Hausa-language Nigerian family entertainment and lifestyle television channel Arewa24 has announced the launch of a new original drama and film production division.
The move will allow Arewa24 to leverage its own production resources and expertise, the Kano-based company said, as well as look to partner with top creative talent from around the world.
Furthermore, it aims to team up with the global streaming services to develop and produce a slate of scripted narrative programming.
The company, which broadcasts across Nigeria and into other parts of West and North Africa, India and Saudi Arabia, will also tell authentic African stories from Northern Nigeria and West Africa in both the Hausa language and in English.
The new division will be headed by Evans Ejioju, an experienced industry veteran who has been the exec producer on hit political thriller Kwana Casa’in (aka 90 Days) since its first season.
He is joined by Salisu Balabare, the current director of Kwana Casa’in and longtime director of the Dadin Kowa drama series, who will oversee the creative direction of the new division.
Bob Reid, the Emmy-winning former exec producer at Discovery Networks and the former exec VP and programming executive at The Africa Channel in the US, will serve as production consultant and exec producer of Arewa24’s original drama and film productions.
“Arewa24 has been developing some of the finest Nigerian writers, producers, directors, editors and actors since the channel launched eight years ago,” said Arewa24’s CEO Jacob Arback.
“We are now positioned to be a major pan-African producer of scripted, authentic African content – for Nigeria, for Africa and for viewers in the West who are becoming more and more exposed to the unique and compelling stories being told in high-quality dramas and films from the continent.
“Our goal is not just to create ever more popular and successful dramas for our core Hausa-speaking audiences. Some of what we produce might not air first on Arewa24. We plan to create a slate of content that appeals to viewers throughout Africa and the rest of the world.
“The new production division will enable us to tailor content to suit those broader targeted audiences. To do that, we plan to produce authentic African content in English as well as in Hausa and take on more provocative subject matter across a wide range of programme genres.”
The drama series already produced and broadcast by Arewa24 include Dadin Kowa, which is in its 25th season, and Kwana Casa’in, which recently wrapped production on its seventh season.
According to the TV channel, several new original drama series are currently in development and the company will be debuting its first originally produced premier feature film in Q4 of this year.
Arewa24 reaches more than 40 million Hausa speakers in Nigeria and West Africa through its Eutelsat satellite free-to-air channel; on the StarTimes pay TV bouquet; Multichoice pay TV platforms DStv and GOtv; pay TV platform TSTV; and the Canal+ pay TV service in Niger, Chad and Cameroon.