Last year, Nollywood got a new lease of life when star actress, Genevieve Nnaji clinched a mouth watering deal reportedly worth $3.8 million, courtesy of online streaming platform, Netflix, which bought her directorial debut, Lion Heart.
However, as you read this piece, pirates have descended on the movie like hungry vultures. Motorists or commuters in Lagos can get a copy of the film for as low as N150, and checks revealed that the quality is equally at par with the real product. Also, at various bus stops in the city, vendors are doing brisk business, as the movie is in high demand.
Meanwhile, the question on every one’s lips is: how will Netflix react? Could it affect other deals with Nigerian filmmakers? Or could Netflix blacklist Nigeria?
Commenting, popular moviemaker, Eddy Ugboma, said: “Genevieve’s film, Lion Heart, was pirated because they withheld it for too long. Maybe, they did that with the hope of selling the film as well. If it is pirated, then I’m sorry for her and her financier; it could be very painful. If it is not pirated then it is not a good film.”
On his part, journalist turned-moviemaker, Samuel Olatunji, said: “It’s painful this has happened. The producer of Lion Heart will lose money. Piracy is theft and theft leads to loss of revenue and discourages investors from investing further in the industry.”
Attempts to reach Genevieve for comment were not successful.