AY Makun's success in the Nigerian film industry happened faster than normal. Now how did Makun get here in such a short period of time?
His success in the Nigerian film industry happened faster than normal. In five years, he has released three successful comedy movies, establishing himself as an auteur, who can deliver at the box office.
While some might say his movies have ever enjoyed that much critical acclaim, the filmmaker has consistently brought in the numbers - groundbreaking numbers.
Three years ago, a first-time producer created what became the highest grossing Nollywood movie with 137 million naira, and even found its way into the Guinness Book of Record.
That movie was “30 Days in Atlanta” - a romantic comedy about the adventures of a familiar and viral character, Akpors.
In 2016, he followed the remarkable success of “30 Days in Atlanta” with “A Trip to Jamaica,” another comedy movie that once again, followed the adventures of Akpors. The movie grossed 178 million naira, and is currently the third highest grossing Nollywood movie ever.
Of course, we have no glimpse into the system of measurement behind this box office claim, but, the available figures portray Makun as a game changer.
Now how did Makun get here in such a short period of time? Well, if you ask the filmmaker, he would attribute his success to ‘grace,’ ‘passion’ and ‘hardwork.’
And while the above factors played and still play a huge role in the success of his brand, his rapid success in the Nigerian film industry can be attributed to his already existing inane fanbase and his business expertise.
Before his debut into the film industry, Makun already had a big potential audience from his thriving comedy career and annual live shows. He was already a successful stand-up comedian with numerous sold-out live shows to his name.
To make it in the already crowded industry, Makun chose the right genre (comedy) and took advantage of Nigerians love for slapstick.
He also chose an already popular character for his movies. For years, Akpors was a viral character that appealed to a demographically wide audience
For all his movies, Makun has an interesting marketing strategy which he uses to drum up excitement; he fills his movies with an exciting A-List cast.
His movies are led by stars, who have an undeniable cult following; veterans like Richard Mofe-Damijo, Ramsey Nouah, Mercy Johnson, Funke Akindele and Nse Ikpe-Etim, Makun undoubtedly relies on his cast to sell his movies.
His latest endeavor, “10 Days in Sun City”, shot in South Africa recently hit the cinemas. It seems to be happening all over again - say hi to the big numbers.
With the right amount of hype, star power and marketing strategy, AY Makun is successfully outdoing Nollywood.