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Nigerian cinemas gross ₦7.2 billion in 2023, Akindele’s film contributes 14%

Over 14% of the total gross was earned by Akindele’s film, which has become the first Nollywood film to hit one billion naira in the cinema.

Nigerian cinemas gross ₦7.2 billion in 2023, Akindele’s film contributes 14% (The Guardian Nigeria)

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the earnings are over 416 million naira more than in 2022 with a 7% year-on-year increase in market share.

However, while 2022 gross was earned from 64 locations, there was a total of 70 locations in 2023. According to data insights from The Industry, a journal by film insights publication, In Nollywood, over 14% of the total gross was earned by Funke Akindele’s 'A Tribe Called Judah’, which has become the first Nollywood film to hit one billion naira in the cinema.

The journal noted that the revenue growth mostly hinged on increased ticket prices, is not happening at the same pace as admissions growth, which is still significantly low. Despite the success of ‘A Tribe Called Judah’, Akindele’s previous film, Omo Ghetto: The Saga (2020) currently holds the record for the most admissions recorded for a Nollywood film at 449,901.

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The project was largely responsible for bringing the audience back to Nigerian cinemas after lockdown and converting new audiences.

If released in the same period as A Tribe Called Judah, with an average ticket price at ₦3,700, it’d have made over ₦1.6bn which raises the question of ticket prices and actual cinema habit growth, despite yearly increase in gross revenues. Ticket prices are at ₦7,000 in most cinemas in city centres.

“In a similar context, the first Black Panther movie, released in 2018, had over 200,000 admissions more than Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.

“The latter went on to break the record for the first film to gross one billion naira in West Africa, a feat aided by increased ticket prices and more screening locations.

“The former grossed over 800 million naira at the time. In 2018, there were 48 locations, the number grew to 64 by 2022,” the journal stated.

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It also stated that cinemas have been hanging on by raising prices at a wild rate, causing audiences to think through their decisions more intently than before.

NAN reports that nine other films grossed over 50 million naira in the cinemas in 2023. They are Malaika, Ada Omo Daddy, Orisa, Merry Men 3, Kesari, Something Like Gold, The Kujus Again, Afamefuna and A Weekend To Forget.

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