Promotional image for "Iyanu," Lion Forge Entertainment. ​
Promotional image for "Iyanu," Lion Forge Entertainment.

Creator of "Iyanu" Graphic Novels, Roye Okupe, Inks Deal on Series' Television Rights

Lion Forge Entertainment announces pioneering new partnership with noted Nigerian creator and producer Roye Okupe to produce adaptations of the "Iyanu" series.

Lion Forge Entertainment is adapting Okupe's best-selling graphic novels — originally published through Dark Horse Comics, into spellbinding TV, film, and gaming experiences. Furthermore, it lays the foundation for an exciting collaboration on Lion Forge's original ventures, with the possibility of Okupe contributing his talents as a writer and director.

The partnership also broadens Lion Forge's "Iyanu" rights, now encompassing live-action adaptations, thereby opening a treasure trove of opportunities to breathe life into this remarkable heroine on the big screen. Currently, production is in full swing for the animated series, eagerly awaited on Cartoon Network and Max. The worldwide premiere of this highly-anticipated series is just around the corner at MIPCOM, promising a tantalizing glimpse into the enthralling world of "Iyanu," where an epic superhero saga is intricately woven into the vibrant tapestry of Nigerian culture, music, and mythology. The unveiling event at MIPCOM is expected to be nothing short of spectacular. In addition, Roye Okupe will delve into the depths of "Iyanu" during Dark Horse's "World of Iyanu" panel at New York Comic Con this Sunday, offering an exclusive first look.

David Steward II, the founder and CEO of Lion Forge Entertainment, expressed his admiration for Roye Okupe, describing him as an exceptional creator, writer, and director, with an unwavering dedication to crafting stories that resonate with audiences from all walks of life. Steward highlighted the alignment of Okupe's creative vision with Lion Forge's mission of providing diverse, culturally enriched narratives that ensure young viewers can see themselves represented on screen. He emphasized Lion Forge's profound honor in embarking on this collaborative journey with Roye, exploring the vast potential within the YouNeek YouNiverse.

Okupe reciprocated the enthusiasm, expressing his delight in considering Lion Forge Entertainment his creative home. He noted the exceptional support the studio has provided for his vision of "Iyanu" and the YouNeek YouNiverse. He eagerly anticipates a close partnership with Lion Forge to breathe life into these stories, strengthening their commitment to authentically representing Nigerian and African narratives. This collaboration is not limited to existing works but extends to new, original projects within the YouNeek YouNiverse and Lion Forge's portfolio of exciting originals.

This first-look deal with Okupe is the latest in a series of strategic moves for Lion Forge as they continue to elevate their creative pursuits. Over the past six months, the studio has bolstered its senior executive team, launched an international distribution division, established a strategic global content partnership with advertising giant Dentsu, and inked a multi-title development agreement with Penguin Young Readers for an array of children's film and television projects.