Today in #TheLagosReview

Fictional Nation of Wakanda
Removed From U.S. Trade List

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) said it removed the fictional country of Wakanda from an online list of nations that have free trade agreements with the United States on Thursday.

The Kingdom of Wakanda is the home of Black Panther, the Marvel superhero, and is portrayed in comic books and the 2018 blockbuster movie as an isolated African nation with the most powerful technology on the planet.

“While we removed the Kingdom of Wakanda from our list of US free trade partners, our relationship will always be strong #WakandaForever,” the USDA tweeted from its official account.

The agency did not immediately respond to questions.

A spokesman told The Washington Post that inclusion of the mythical African nation from the universe of Marvel superheroes was a mistake made as part of a test officials were running.

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Opera Mini in music download deal with Mdundo

Global web operator Opera has partnered with Mdundo, an African music sharing platform, in an agreement that will see the latter’s users gain access and listen to and download music listed on the platform for free.

Users of Opera Mini web browser will have access to music of different genres and from various artists who hail from Kenya, Nigeria, Ghana, Tanzania, South Africa, Uganda, Mozambique, Zambia and Zimbabwe. Opera Mini users will tap Mdundo’s music library which features 100 most popular songs in each country.

Opera Mini is a data-saving browser with about 100 million users around the world.

“Mdundo has changed the way people listen to music on their smartphones. Now with Mdundo support in Opera Mini, music lovers can access a catalogue that includes the best local artists, the most popular songs in their country, and the fastest growing independent local artist platform,” said Product Director of Opera Mini Africa, Michael Gray.

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Source: businessdailyafrica com

Film One announces major fund to improve Nollywood films

FilmOne Entertainment, on Thursday, announced the launch of the first-ever international capital fund created specially for investment in a slate of Nigerian films.

The company is in partnership with Huahua Media, a Chinese company known for investing in ‘Godzilla: King of the Monsters’, ‘Transformers: The Last Knight’ and ‘Star Trek Beyond’, as well as AY’s next movie, ’30 Days in China’, and Empire Entertainment (South Africa), a leading African distributor representing major Hollywood studios to provide better access to international markets.

Both companies will assist in identifying the films with the most potential for theatrical release and box office success in global markets.

On hand to witness the signing of the historic agreement by executives of Huahua and FilmOne was Mr. Chu Maoming, Consul General, People’s Republic of China and Mrs. Uju Emagha, Zonal Coordinator, National Film and Videos Censors Board, representing the Executive Director, Alhaji Adedayo Thomas. Mr. Kefei Wang, CEO, Huahua Media; Mr. Johnny Fu Cong, Huahua Media; Mr. Kene Okwuosa, Co-Founder, FilmOne; Mr. Moses Babatope, Co-Founder, FilmOne; and Mr. Chinaza Onuzo, Director, FilmOne, all participated
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Odunlade Adekola’s new film ‘Ajanaku’ tops trending list on YouTube

Popular Yoruba actor, Odunlade Adekola’s new film, ‘Ajanaku’ is currently at the top of the trending list on YouTube.

The Yoruba film, which was written, directed and produced by the renowned actor was premiered on Dec. 13 and it has over 420 views in the first six days on YouTube.

The film ‘Ajanaku,’ tells the story of Dr Ajanaku, a worthy unorthodox healer, a role played by Adekola.

Ajanaku(Adekola) believed so much in his ancestral powers but in this chosen path, there were lots of battles to be fought to remain relevant.

The film features Yemi Solade, Odunlade Adekola, and Ireti Osayemi, Eniola Ajao, Bolaji Amusan aka Mr. Latin and Babatunde Aderinoye.

According to him, the film also features some of the students from his acting academy, Odunlade Adekola Film and Production Academy (OAFP).

Adekola a Nigeria actor, singer, film-maker, producer and director, gained popularity with his lead role in Ishola Durojaye’s 2003 movie ‘Asiri Gomina Wa’.

Adekola is a prolific movie producer, who has produced mostly Yoruba films and currently the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Odunlade Adekola Film Production(OAFP).

Through his production company, he has been able to produce several movies in Nigeria and has acted in multiple Nollywood movies.

The most notable movie he has produced is “Adebayo Aremu” which he also acted in as a lead character.

The renowned Yoruba actor, began his acting career professionally in 1996 .

Then he joined the Association of Nigeria Theatre Arts Practitioners, under the tutelage of the late Nollywood actor and producer, Isola Durojaiye, also known as Alasari.

Adekola has acted, scripted, produced and directed several Yoruba films over the years which include Omo Colonel, Aroba, Oro, Sunday Dagboru, Monday omo adugbo, Taxi Driver: Oko Ashewo, Eku Meji, Kurukuru, Sunday gboku gboku, Adura, etc.

In December 2015, he marked his entrance into the Nigerian music industry.

Adekola in the cause of his acting career, won several awards in Nigeria, which include Best Actor in Yoruba at the Africa Movie Academy Awards in April 2014, Best Actor of the Year at the City People Entertainment Awards in 2009.

In 2011, he won the Best Actor of the Year at the City People Entertainment Awards and in 2014, he won the Best Actor (Yoruba) at the City People Entertainment Awards.

In 2015, he won the Best Actor in a Leading Role at the City People Entertainment Awards and Best Actor of the Year at the African Magic Viewers Choice Awards.

Odunlade Adekola is currently one of the most talented actors, who is married to Ruth Abosede Adekola and the marriage is blessed with beautiful children.

SIMStheMovie premieres this Sunday

Story story oo… a young wealthy Pastor who is desired by most of the single ladies in his congregation suddenly loses his wife to suicide and his church is thrown into wahala as the elders attempt to choose a new wife in a bid to restore order and sanity. Who go be the new wife ooo? Hmm.

Stepping Into Maggie’s Shoe (SIMS) is a must-watch film about love, forgiveness, adultery, scandal, betrayal and faith. Starring @femijacobs @opeyemiakintunde @lizameye @olayodejuliana @euchariaanunobi @mikeabdulnaija @kayodebabs @uchemacauley.

Poduced by @opeyemiakintunde and Directed by @davidkolaokeowo.
Executive producer @veronicafolorunsho

Oya follow @simsthemovie now now for a chance to win a ticket to the premiere and other freebies on Sunday 22nd December at Oriental Hotel. Featuring @tope_alabi_ @nosaalways, @midnightcrewng @bidemiolaoba, @beejaysaxb, @spiritofsaco and many more.

Kpali is an eloquent commentary on millennial angst – Toni Kan

Forget the acting.

Forget the hype.

Go see Kplai the movie for the aerial shots that make Lagos look nothing like the chaotic urban conurbation we all love to hate.

Ladi Johnson and his DoP get full marks for producing a crisp, visually stunning film.

But movies are much more than cinematography and visual clarity. Movies have to be visceral and relatable and realistic in a way that approaches verisimilitude.

Kpali ticks all those boxes as a movie revolving around a 20 something year old Amaka Kalayo whose sedate London life is set on a roller coaster when her bosses inform her that she has 30 days to close a big deal or lose not just her job but her Kpali; her visa, work permit and right to live and work in the UK.

Thrust into this career maelstrom, Amaka departs for Nigeria with her oyibo male colleague in tow. They arrive Lagos and for some curious reason head together to Amaka’s family home and thus ensues the comedy of errors that is almost always at the heart of a true rom-com.

Kpali is funny, quirky, relatable and clear in the audience it addresses itself to.

It has Nkem “Osuafia” Owoh as well as Seyi law for the laughs. When Amaka’s colleague introduces himself as Jake Hunter, Nkem Owoh’s character asks – “Who is the hunted?”

But it is not the ha-ha moments that hold the most appeal, it is those moments where the actors throw a curveball, where you, as the audience, has been led a certain way and then surprised by something least expected.

A case in point is where Jidenna looks deep in Amaka’s eyes on their first date and while you are cringing and hoping he doesn’t say “I love you” or “I want to marry you” he says something completely asinine but which cracks every one up.

This is a movie for naija millennials, young career minded Nigerians living within or outside the country and trying to find that elusive balance between work and living. They are educated, well-travelled, savvy and eloquent in the lingo of the woke generation.

But no matter how world savvy they are, they remain at the core, Nigerians who have to answer to their parents and bring a man or woman to perpetuate the family line.

Kpali is exciting to watch because it presents a movie that proceeds along multiple narrative strands. This is important in holding audience attention. There is the work angle with Amaka running against the clock to get the deal sealed but thrown into the mix is the emotional angle as Amaka begins to catch feelings not just for one but two men and then there is the IJGB angle, with Amaka as a potential “I Just Got Back” whose encounter with Nigeria begins to give her a fresh perspective to things.

By proceeding along these disparate trajectories, Kpali addresses itself to multiple audiences many of whom will find at least one strand appealing enough to go see the movie.

Ms. Okojie is a delight as leading lady. Her choice of outfits are spot on especially for a corporate highflier something Nollywood hardly ever gets right and her face is a study in emotional turmoil from hearing the news to running into Jake Hunter at the airport to taking a call from her parents, her pretty face is a mobile signboard of emotions.

Her attempts to get past IK Osakioduwa’s character is ennobling because it quickly helps situate her in a different context where she is seen as not just a pretty face but one with brains and business savvy.

The key message though is that when the world seems to be crashing all around you, take out time and seek a change of scene. It often provides fresh perspectives. Amaka is suddenly no longer all about work. She is finally stopping to smell the roses and let the petals of her heart unfurl to the kiss of the sun of love. Where does she find love? Who does she choose between the two men who make her heart go boom? Head to the cinema.

But Kpali is not a perfect film. There are contrived scenes especially when she gets her phone snatched. You have to wonder why she had to wind her window down or that market scene where Jake buys that hideous bag.

But as Nollywood movies go, this is a feel good romp and a very relatable movie that will appeal to millennials who are battling that transition from dependency to independence while evading that pesky question – Nne, when are you getting married?

Kpali hits cinemas, nationwide, today December 20, 2019


FirstBank has announced its sponsorship of an array of initiatives to empower the society as well as promote the growth and development of entertainment genres including music, fashion and arts in the country. The yearly partnership tagged FirstBankIssaVybe which kicked off in 2018, is designed by the Bank to create an enthralling and enabling experience for Nigerians especially the young ones in the Yuletide season to bond with family and friends, whilst connecting with their favourite superstars.

From the exciting Alternative Sound 4.0, held at Terra Culture on 5 December 2019 to the unforgettable “An Evening with FBNHoldings” held on 13 December, 2019 to the pleasure overload of Island Block Party at Oniru Lagos on 14 December, lucky customers and followers of the Bank’s social media handles were given free tickets to have loads of fun!

Also, in the bouquet of fun extravaganza was Teni – The Billionaire Experience musical concert held at Eko Hotel on Monday, 16 December 2019 which had many customers thrilled to the finest of tunes by the Billionaire crooner and other guest artistes present.

Youth and teenage fashion lovers are not left out; as with Street Souk, they were exposed to the current trends in the world of creativity in the fashion industry. The event held on Wednesday, 18 December 2019. Keen on getting exposed to the best and latest designs, wears and fabrics in fashion, then the African Fashion Week Nigeria would be your port of call. The event, billed for 20 – 21 December 2019 attracts leading players in the fashion industry and promises to deepen the fashion appetite and interest of participants.

On the 27th of December, it would be the turn of Davido’s Good Time Concert to take Centre Stage and provide opportunities for FirstBank customers to win tickets to have a good time this season. FirstBank will then round up the year in grand style with the much anticipated concert with the Future Live in Concert scheduled for 29 December 2019 at the Eko hotel.

On the Bank’s commitment to vybing the society in December, the Group Head, Marketing & Corporate Communications said “2019 has indeed been a significant year for the FirstBank family being our 125th –anniversary with the celebratory theme ‘Woven into the Fabric of Society’. DecemberIsAVybe is an avenue for us to appreciate our stakeholders for their support by promoting and providing opportunities to grow entertainment industry and empowering young people as jobs are created in this period. It’s an opportunity for those who cannot afford passes to attend key events through giveaways. It is our way of further showing that we are indeed well woven into the fabric of society.”

To win tickets for any of these events, join the conversation ‘#DecemberIsAVybe’ by following FirstBank on any of its respective social media handles; @firstbanknigeria on Instagram; @firstbankngr on twitter and FirstBankofNigeriaLimited on Facebook.

About FirstBank:

First Bank of Nigeria Limited (FirstBank) is the premier Bank in West Africa and the leading banking services solutions provider in Nigeria for 125 years. With some 15 million customer accounts, FirstBank provides a comprehensive range of retail and corporate financial services with over 750 business locations.

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