Lagos, Nigeria – After a record-breaking run at the box office, Nigeria’s first million-dollar movie, The Wedding Party, has come to Netflix due to growing demand from Nollywood fans worldwide.
When it was first released in cinemas in December 2016, no one knew whether this muchhyped romantic comedy would live up to expectations. However, within two weeks, it had smashed the Nollywood box-office record of N178.5 million and kept cinemas full until well after Valentine’s Day. By early March, it had added over N270 million and become the highest-grossing Nollywood film in history with N453 million.
With its release on Netflix, The Wedding Party is set to thrill Nigerians and other Africans in the diaspora who have been asking about possible cinema release. Enthusiastic fans give multiple reasons for the film’s appeal, but they all seem to agree on a few key ingredients: a good script, a romantic storyline, strong family themes, beautiful sets, gorgeous costumes, lots of laughs, and characters that they can relate to. Moreover, everyone identifies with the lavish Nigerian wedding, contentious relatives and almost-chaotic proceedings.
The story follows the challenges faced by reformed playboy, Dozie, and his virgin bride, Dunni, as they try to tie the knot in a lavish wedding celebration. However, before they can emerge as a couple, they have to overcome a hostile mother-in-law, a sexy ex-girlfriend who’s still besotted, an indiscreet best man, gate-crashers from the village and a trigger-happy thief.
Mo Abudu, Executive Producer of The Wedding Party, is excited to see the reaction of audiences outside Nigeria. “We set out, quite deliberately, to make a high-quality film that Africans would be proud of. This is a process we started with Fifty (also on Netflix), the debut feature from EbonyLife Films, which was one of the highest-grossing movies of 2015 and the only Nigerian title screened at the BFI London Film Festival that year.”
Fan of the genre will notice that The Wedding Party avoids the technical glitches that affect most Nollywood productions, in terms of continuity, editing, cinematography and the soundtrack, thereby increasing its appeal. The cast give superb performances, with relative newcomers like Banky W and Adesua Etomi, looking comfortable alongside veteran actors Richard Mofe-Damijo, Ireti Doyle and the comedy genius of Sola Sobowale.
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