News

Nigerian Filmmaker Tunde Kelani Combats Nollywood's Piracy Problems With His Own Streaming Network

Nigerian filmmaker Tunde Kelani launches his own streaming network as a way of combating Nollywood's piracy problems.


Longtime Nigerian filmmaker Tunde Kelani– otherwise known as TK– has consolidated his extensive library of films and TV shows into an online streaming network. Tunde Kelani TV, which launched last Friday, will serve as a “home of premium indigenous entertaining content and cultural themes from Africa and the diaspora, optimized for web and mobile devices.”

Among the movies and series currently available for streaming are Kelani's 2011 drama MAAMi, the 2011/2013 2-part love story Oleku, and the "filmed play" Yeepa. As of now there's no fee associated with the website.

According to Shadow & Act, TK has long been a vocal opponent of piracy, specifically in Nollywood.

"It is an attempt to respond to the yearnings of our teeming fans of rich African themed contents on the go," Kelani says. "Distributing films or other contents physically are becoming increasingly difficult, revenues are lost on a daily basis and content owners are at the mercy of the menacing activities of pirates. I think it is just natural, expedient and sensible to take contents closer to the consumers on demand and in terms that suit all the parties involved."

Music

6 Samples From 'Éthiopiques' in Hip-Hop

A brief history of Ethio-jazz cultural exchange featuring songs by Nas & Damian Marley, K'naan, Madlib and more.

This article was originally published on OkayAfrica in March, 2017. We're republishing it here for our Crossroads series.

It's 2000 something. I'm holed up in my bedroom searching for samples to chop up on Fruity Loops. While deep into the free-market jungle of Amazon's suggested music section, I stumble across a compilation of Ethiopian music with faded pictures of nine guys jamming in white suit jackets. I press play on the 30 second sample.

My mind races with the opportunities these breakbeats offered a budding beat maker. Catchy organs, swinging horns, funky guitar riffs, soulful melodies and grainy and pained vocalists swoon over love lost and gained. Sung in my mother tongue—Amharic—this was a far cry from the corny synthesizer music of the 1990s that my parents played on Saturday mornings. I could actually sample this shit.

The next day, I burn a CD and pop it into my dad's car. His eyes light up when the first notes ooze out of the speakers. “Where did you get this?" He asks puzzlingly. “The internet," I respond smiling.

In the 1970s my dad was one of thousands of high school students in Addis Ababa protesting the monarchy. The protests eventually created instability which lead to a coup d'état. The monarchy was overthrown and a Marxist styled military junta composed of low ranking officers called the Derg came to power. The new regime subsequently banned music they deemed to be counter revolutionary. When the Derg came into power, Amha Eshete, a pioneering record producer and founder of Ahma Records, fled to the US and the master recordings of his label's tracks somehow ended up in a warehouse in Greece.

Keep reading... Show less

get okayafrica in your inbox

popular.

How Nigerian Streetwear Brand, Daltimore, is Rising To Celebrity Status

We spoke with founder and creative director David Omigie about expression through clothing and that #BBNaija pic.