Rema is introduced by Mavin Records
When Don Jazzy announced that Mavin Records had signed a 19-year-old rapper named Rema, no one anticipated the commotion that would follow. The young rapper/singer debuted with a self-titled E.P that has quickly settled him into a league of his own. It’s been 9 months and Rema is now a global force. Barack Obama likes his music; and 2 weeks ago, Rolling Stone magazine listed Iron Man (a song off his first E.P) as one of the Best 50 Songs of 2019.
Beyonce features a number of Nigerian artists on a Lion King album
In July, Beyonce released a compilation of music inspired by the 2019 photorealistic remake of that enduring Disney classic The Lion King. The album featured a number of artists specifically curated by her, including Tiwa Savage, Mr Eazi, Wizkid, Burna Boy, Tekno and Yemi Alade.
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Beyonce’s Lion King album is Grammy-nominated for Best Pop Vocal Album
Beyonce’s Lion King inspired album earned itself a Grammy nomination, ahead of the 62nd Grammy Awards Ceremony that will hold on the 26th of January, 2020. The Grammy nomination means everyone that contributed to the production of the Lion King album will share in the honour a win will bring. The list of Nigerian contributors includes Burna Boy, Tekno, Tiwa Savage, Wizkid, Yemi Alade, Mr Eazi, Sarz (songwriter), Northboi (producer), and Bankulli (songwriter).
Living In Bondage gets a reboot
The original was a 1992 film, one of the first to be commercially successful in Nigeria. Ramsey Nouah ambitiously set out to create a reboot that would connect a younger generation of Nigerians to the film, and he succeeded. The reboot, Living In Bondage: Breaking Free, grossed 50 million naira in its opening week.
Burna Boy’s African Giant album is nominated for a Grammy
In the midst of several other nominations and wins this year (AFRIMMA Artist/Song of the Year, sold-out Apollo Theater, Wembley Arena, Partille Arena, BET Best International Act, Coachella show, etc.) Burna Boy’s African Giant earned a Grammy nomination for Best World Music Album.
Lionheart is considered and dropped by the Oscar Academy
The Nigerian Oscar Selection Committee picked Lionheart, a film directed by Genevieve Nnaji, to represent Nigeria in the Best International Film category, and submitted it to the Oscar Academy. After viewing the film, the Oscar Academy rejected it stating that the film didn’t meet requirements for qualification. We celebrated when it was selected, and fumed when the Oscar Academy turned it down.
Chimamanda is awarded the UN Global Leadership prize
In recognition of her work in highlighting gender issues and racism, Chimamanda was awarded the UN Foundation’s Global Leadership prize in November. She is the first Nigerian to receive this.
Lola Shoneyin and Ake Festival are featured on CNN African Voices
Lola Shoneyin has been blazing a trail with the annual Ake Festival she founded in 2013. She was featured on CNN’s African Voices this month, a show that highlights some of the most innovative and impactful individuals on the continent.
Arit Okpo becomes the new host of CNN African voices
Arit Okpo is a Nigerian journalist, TV presenter, documentary filmmaker, producer and voice-over talent, mostly known for her time on Ebony Life TV. She became the new host of CNN’s African voices in August.
Filmmaking teenagers from Kaduna go viral
A group of teenage filmmakers in Kaduna who call themselves The Critics Company, went viral when a Reuters video showing their creativity and resourcefulness started circulating on social media. The teenagers were using an old laptop, a broken smartphone and a green screen to make dystopian action films.
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Abba T. Makama premieres at TIFF
Director Abba T. Makama’s latest feature-length film, an experimental piece of work called The Lost Okoroshi, made its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival in September. TIFF is one of the most prestigious film festivals in the world.
Youneek Studios brings African mythology to life in Nigerian animation film, Malika
Youneek Studios released a short animation film based in 15th Century West Africa. The storyline was based on pre-released graphic novels, and the animation film featured Adesua Etomi as the voice of the main character, Malika, a warrior queen struggling to keep an empire together.
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