EbonyLife talks up ‘Afro-genres’ at Mipcom
MIPCOM: African channel EbonyLife Media is at the Mipcom market here in Cannes looking to work with international partners on a range of drama projects it is billing as ‘Afro-genres’.
EbonyLife has spent the past few years teaming up with international partners to develop and evolve its original African content. In 2014, the company partnered with Disney to produce Desperate Housewives Africa, which was based on the US drama and became a major hit across Africa.
Since then, EbonyLife has produced more than 5,000 hours of entertainment and reality programmes through EbonyLife Studios. Furthermore, its Nigerian movie franchise The Wedding Party has emerged as a major favourite.
In March 2018, the company struck a three-project deal with Sony Pictures Television to produce dramas including The Dahomey Warriors. EbonyLife also acquired a licence to produce gameshow The Dating Game Nigeria.
The company is now at Mipcom looking to continue this strategy of teaming with international partners. In addition, EbonyLife CEO Mo Abudu will give a keynote address on the significance of EbonyLife’s Afro genres at Content London, which takes place in the UK capital from November 27 to 30 this year.
EbonyLife is in discussions with international partners over various coproduction projects, and is offering producers and distributors distinct content formats, scripts and concepts in the form of series, movies and shows that are ready to be developed.
To meet the demands of audiences, the EbonyLife research team has been developing content in four major areas under the overall ‘Afro-genre’ label.
Afro-history deals with stories related to myths and legends from the African continent such as The Dahomey Warriors, a series about a young girl who faces adversity when she joins the renowned female warriors who guard the king in the 18th century West African kingdom of Dahomey.
Afro-futurism explores a futuristic Africa using science-fiction and adventures to tell stories. One of such project is Nigeria 2099.
Afropolitan refers to series that reflect African issues, contemporary African life and African drama generally. Legal drama Castle & Castle is one example.
Afro-impact encompasses drama related to current events that reflect societal issues such as the war against modern slavery and terrorism. Human-trafficking film Oloture comes under this label.
EbonyLife Media said it was able to convert African stories into a language understood globally. Its partnership with international studios is aimed at brining these concepts to life.