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“Funmilayo Ransome Kuti” Biopic U-turns Prime Video Deal, Sets Nationwide Cinema Debut May 17th

The Story ⚡

An encompassing biopic on the life of the fearless leader, Funmilayo Ransome-Kuti, originally acquired by the Japa streaming service is now heading for a theatrical first release.

Tell Me More

The Funmilayo Ransome-Kuti biopic is ready to hit the big screens. Written by Tunde Babalola and directed by Bolanle Austen Peters in 2022, the feature follows a  fearless Nigerian female leader who sparks a revolution against colonialism and patriarchy, forever transforming the destiny of her nation.

The biopic picks Iyimide Ayo-Olumoko, Kehinde Bankole and Joke Silva to play the eponymous role with other cast members including Ibrahim Suleiman, Omowunmi Dada, Patrick Diabuah, Keppy Ekpeyoung, Adunni Ade, Adebayo Salami, Prince Jide Kosoko, Dele Odule, & Shawn Faqua.

The biopic is centred around the life of Funmilayo Ransome-Kuti, the women’s activist who created the Abeokuta’s Women’s Union that started the battle against colonial and traditional rulers, who were against fairness and justice.

Its exhibition run, handled by Film One, will begin May 17th 2024.

Prime Video Deal

According to sources familiar with the matter, the FRK biopic had been acquired by the streaming service last year.  The deal talks had begun before the BAP production company made an Oscar attempt( Best International Film) for the consideration of the Nigeria Official Screening Committee (NOSC) towards the 96th Academy Awards.  Whilst it made the top 3 upon the voting process, the film was bested by CJ Obasi’s Mami Wata who repped Nigeria as an Oscar submission.

The producer of FRK seems to have made a turn from this Prime Video offer and has now set sights on taking the title as a theatrical first.

This U-TURN comes at a time when the streamer has decreased its investment in the African market and laid off its Nigerian executive team in the London office with less than 2 years in operation.

New Poster Controversy

The theatrical poster for the film seems to be generating buzz for the title.

As the genre of the film says it’s a biopic, movie audiences were expecting a poster with only a female reassertion. However, that wasn’t the case as the release poster had the key characters in the title making an appearance, not just the female leads.

This new design is simply a part of the whole as a variety of posters had earlier been released and was made for a wide target audience pull and marketing material when used as standees in cinema halls.

In Summary

People generally know Funmilayo Ransome-Kuti as the first Nigerian woman to drive a car but this biopic will change that.

Nominated for AMVCA 10 Best Movie and winner of Best Movie Writing at AFRIFF 2023, Funmilayo Ransome Kuti heads to the big screens from May 17th as a consumer appeal test for Nigerian biopics.

Thanks for Reading. covers the big creators and players in the African film/TV industry and how they do business. 

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