Africa is Next on Netflix’s Challenge List

Some weeks ago, out of late night curiosity, boredom and interest, I was going through Netflix’s job search page hoping I’d find an internship space or even a job category that fits my type – greatest procrastinator?, Unsuccessfully managed a blog page on things he claims to love? and other things you can characterize me as. That yielded to nothing of course.
Interestingly, I found this job which I can’t really remember how it was tagged. But the job description and requirements, I remember so well and can summarize a bit here.
The job requirement states ‘years of vast experience and knowledge in movies and entertainment in Africa’, ‘Years of experience in negotiation for acquisition of movie rights” and so on and so forth.
That could have been my job, but no, I’m not experienced and I don’t have the education. Which comes to my excuse to why I have been AWOL for a while. I’ve been busy with school for some semester project like that, which only clears half my reasons/excuse though. Man needs to get the education for a Netflix-like job. Yeah, you’ve been seeing me on twitter and all around. But writing for y’all on this blog is a different soul and mind something compared to trash ground,twitter. Next year is going to be better. Issa Christmas promise!

As I started writing this article, I couldn’t remember what the job was called on the Netflix job page. As I wrote down the requirements, tiny bits started dropping in my head. It’s something like ‘Content Acquisition manager for Africa’ or so.

Flash forward to weeks after, Netflix’s VP for international original programming, Erik Barmack, announces that Netflix would be looking into commissioning new stuffs like series and movies in Africa in 2019 which would serve as a first for the company in original acquisition. Although international rights to already completed projects like Lion Heart by Genevieve Nnaji and Vaya, a south African production by Nigerian director, Akin Omotoso were purchased some months ago.

Definitely, someone got the hotcake job. I’m not crying. I’m actually happy. Someone’s warming the seat for me.
Few days ago, popular south African actress, Pearl Thusi who I first got to know on Quantico announced a new Netflix series titled Queen Sono, which would serve as a first in the pipeline of many hopefully. This is a great thing for the industry in Africa in terms of funding, promotion and audience reach as Netflix gets to carry the responsibility.

https://twitter.com/PearlThusi/status/1072031139198582784

As she announced on twitter, the series Queen Sono is going to be a spy show with a female lead trying to balance work and her personal life. Bleh! Boring!
The decision to go with a spy show as a first production coming from Africa is a weird choice for me. As I think there are other interesting stories that could be told from this dear colourful region. We wouldn’t want to see same old recycled westernized stories that we’re all tired of seeing as premise of shows in a new region filled with countless and endless forms of exciting stories which the world could use to take a break from the western world of reboots.

A story of Sense8’s Caphus’ life in Kenya wouldn’t be a bad story to start with. Going deeper into his daily life is a great storytelling opportunity. With an already acquired audience with Sense8, they get to just grow things from there through fans who’ve even been crying for more Sense8 episodes. But what do I know? I’ve no years of acquisition and negotiation experience sadly.

Nevertheless, it’s still great news which we should be grateful and glad about. Not trying to bury the project before it’s born, but with new competition in the streaming service world coming for Netflix next year, it’d be advisable to dive into new unexplored fertile lands for stories that have potential to bring in new customers, than recycling same old western “spy trying to balance work and personal life” shit.

I’m particularly looking forward to projects that’d be coming out of my homeland, Nigeria. The world don’t know what they’re in for. Watch out!

Currently on Netflix are these Nigerian movies: Wedding Party 1, Green White Green, Fifty, Lunch Time Heroes, Gbomo Gbomo Express among a whole bunch of others. Genevieve Nnaji’s Lion Heart drops on January 4 on Netflix.

 

Bis Bald!

4 comments

  1. Nice step from Netflix, but I’d say video streaming is actually a has a long way to go in this part of the world due to variety of reasons we both know already. it’s a great step in the right direction though.

    Like

  2. Nice step from Netflix, but I’d say video streaming actually has a long way to go in this part of the world due to variety of reasons we both know already. it’s a great step in the right direction though.

    Liked by 1 person

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