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Nollywood Filmmakers On Hollywood Reporter’s Power List

NOLLYWOOD filmmakers Mo Abudu, Funke Akindele, and Jade Osiberu have been honoured in The Hollywood Reporter’s esteemed list of the 40 Most Powerful Women in International Film. This annual list recognises women who are revolutionising the global film industry by bringing diverse stories to international audiences and nurturing emerging talents amidst a challenging market.

The Hollywood Reporter praised these African filmmakers for their contributions to cinema, highlighting their compelling stories and exceptional productions.


Mo Abudu (CEO, EbonyLife Media)

Despite challenges in Africa’s production industry, such as Amazon Prime Video’s exit from the African originals business, Mo Abudu has continued to flourish. A pioneer in African media, her recent project, the short film Dust to Dreams directed by Idris Elba, secured funding from the African Export-Import Bank’s $1bn Creative Africa film fund.

Emphasising the importance of diverse narratives, Abudu stated, ‘We need a systemic shift towards inclusion. Diverse storytelling isn’t just about representation; it’s about unlocking a wealth of untapped creative potential.’

Funke Akindele (Producer, Film One Entertainment)

Funke Akindele, who expanded her roles from actor, writer, director, and producer to politician by running in the 2023 Lagos state gubernatorial elections, has seen significant success despite her party’s loss. Her latest comedy, A Tribe Called Judah, which she wrote, directed, produced, and starred in, became Nigeria’s highest-grossing film, earning $1.2 million.

Jade Osiberu (Founder, Greoh Studios)

Jade Osiberu, a prominent Nigerian producer-director, created the acclaimed crime thriller Gangs of Lagos for Amazon. Her upcoming film, Everything Scatter, depicts the lives of five young individuals amidst a day of protests in Lagos.

Reacting to the recognition, Mo Abudu expressed her elation, saying, ‘This recognition is a massive win for Nigeria! Seeing our nation celebrated for its incredible storytelling potential is so inspiring. I’m incredibly proud to be part of a movement pushing for a more inclusive film industry that embraces the power of diverse stories.’

Other filmmakers featured in the list include Maren Ade and Janine Jankowski, co-founders of Komplizen Film (Germany), Lila Avilés of Limerencia Films (Mexico), Farhana Bhula, Head of Creative at Film4 (U.K.), and Clémence de Lampugnano, Artistic Adviser at TF1 Film Production (France).

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