By Greg Palmer:
Fifty, the Box Office smash hit from EbonyLife Films, will this week close its remarkable four-month cinema run in Nigeria. The much-talked about story of a pivotal week in the lives of four successful African Women in 21st Century Lagos has redefined return on investment metrics in the African film industry.
It is estimated that through various revenue generating streams, the film has grossed overN400 million.
In partnership with Film One Distribution, FIFTY made nearly N100 million through Box Office takings alone. Premiere Sponsorship/ Partnerships; Private screenings; a first-of-its-kind deal with internet streaming provider, Netflix; in-flight entertainment deals and Video-on-Demand (VOD) are among the other revenue streams.
Speaking on FIFTY’s cinema run, executive producer, Mo Abudu, said “we started our cinema run in early December 2015 and four months later the film continues to resonate with moviegoers across the country. We are extremely proud and it is testament that Nigerians do support their own.”
The movie’s revenue intake leverages on a unique business model not previously explored in the Nigerian Film Industry. This model serves as proof to various stakeholders – producers, directors and investors – an unorthodox promotional mix combined with high quality production yields measurable results.
FIFTY enjoyed tremendous support from The Lagos State Government, The Federal Government, Corporate and Social Nigeria. Industry captains – Aliko Dangote, Tony Elumelu, Herbert Wigwe amongst many attended the premiere; Music superstars Banky W and Waje surprised fans with Cinema ‘Meet & Greet’ in malls across the country.
A ‘Win Big with FIFTY’ promo was run nationwide with audiences walking away with weekly prizes including WAKANOW holidays, SPAR vouchers, Flat screen TVs courtesy of KONGA and more. The Grand Prize of a Brand new Mercedes Benz B-class courtesy Skymit Motors will be presented to a winner in April 2016.
FIFTY has enjoyed rave reviews and international acclaim since it was first screened at The BFI London Film Festival 2015 including BBC, CNN, Vogue, and Essence and other national online and print titles.
The success of FIFTY has spawned a television series; the movie executives announced that they would extend the movie’s success onto the small screen. The TV show will continue the premise that the movie set up – a week in the lives of 4 African Women approaching the golden age of ‘Fifty.’ Details of whether the lead characters will reprise their film roles will be revealed in due course. Season 1 of FIFTY: The TV series is set for production in Q4 2016, writing has already commenced.
“I really enjoyed watching Fifty and it was great to watch it with such an enthusiastic audience. It was funny, full of melodrama and disarmingly touching and courageous at the same time – a side of Lagos you don’t often get to see and a really original film.” said Charlotte Moore, Controller BBC
For Ojoma Ochai, Director, British Council “Thanks again for the invitation to see FIFTY. It was an amazing film – the music, costumes, story, and the elegance with which the plot was delivered. I loved it”