Beyond the Netflix Naija handle: Here’s why Netflix was in town

Yesterday, Netflix announced its presence in Nigeria with the post below on its new Netflix Naija (@NetflixNaija) Twitter handle. And social media erupted – mostly with joy.

The official Netflix Naija handle

After allowing Netflix do the honours, social media became awash with posts from Nollywood actors, directors and producers which told us why Netflix was in town.

It wasn’t just to unveil the Netflix Naija social media accounts. But to make a bigger announcement regarding Netflix’s first Nigerian Original Series.

According to Deadline, Netflix has ordered its ‘first Nigerian Original from “Vaya” Director Akin Omotoso.’ Deadline also reports that it is a six-part series yet-to-be-titled that will be directed by Akin, Daniel Oriahi and CJ Obasi.

Akin Omotoso broke the news with this Instagram post

Wondering why Kate Henshaw wore that statement-making fascinator?

Ms Henshaw will play a lead role alongside Ade Laoye in the series which is set in contemporary Nigeria and shot in Lagos.

Akin Omotoso also shared this on Instagram

The story

It tells the story of Kemi, a goddess reincarnated as a human to avenge her sister’s death. But first, she must learn how to use and harness her superpowers to defeat her enemies and save her family from destruction.

Henshaw and Omotoso are no strangers. The Nollywood actress starred in Omotoso’s 2019 drama, “The Ghost and the House of Truth.” Although the movie had mixed reviews, it was unanimously agreed that Henshaw put up quite the show as Officer Stainless.

This original series however, looks to be paranormal towing similar lines as the much acclaimed “Atlantics.” We’re keeping our eyes peeled.

It’s Nigeria’s time

It’s been over a year since Genevieve Nnaji’s “Lionheart” was released as the first Netflix Original movie from Nigeria. Since then, we have seen South Africa’s “Shadow,” and tomorrow, “Queen Sono” will start streaming on Netflix.

If you are already a Netflix subscriber, you might have received an email informing customers that billings will be charged in Naira effective March. The launch of dedicated Nigeria social media handles is another mark of localisation. These show that Netflix is now ready to focus on Nigeria as one of its key markets in Africa. And we’re better for it.

As one social media user said, Nigerian filmmakers have a ‘golden opportunity’ to tell our stories to the world. Let’s hope they do not blow it!

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About the author

A lover of the arts who sees film and television through the eyes of the Nigerian viewer.