Thursday, May 30, 2024

Cannes Film Festival: Funke Akindele to Keynote at NIFS

This year’s NIFS@Cannes keynote will be delivered by the iconic and award-winning Queen of Nigerian Box Office and CEO of Funke Ayotunde Akindele Network (FAAN), whose box office records is not limited to Nigeria only but the entire West Africa. 

Funke Akindele has been and still remains a very solid and bankable powerhouse producer/director in Nollywood. From captivating audiences on Nigerian TV to making waves in Nollywood and becoming Nigeria’s Box Office Queen by her latest feat of breaking the box office with her December 2023 release, ‘A Tribe Called Judah’, grossing one billion naira in its first three weeks of release and later closing at 1.4 billion. Her film ‘Battle on Buka Street’ grossed over 660 million naira, solidifying its position as the second highest-grossing Nollywood movie. Additionally, ‘Omo Ghetto; The Saga’ achieved the remarkable feat of becoming the third highest-grossing Nollywood movie, grossing about 628 million naira within its first four weeks.

Funke Akindele’s journey is nothing short of visionary and extraordinary – consistently upping her game and breaking her own industry’s all-time high records for Nigerian films. Funke has also successfully collaborated with other professionals, starring in box office hits such as A Trip to Jamaica, Isoken, and Your Excellency. Through her success over the years, she has gathered a strong followership on social media with a whopping 16.7 million followers.

Starting with her breakout role in ‘I Need to Know’ back in ’97, Funke has made a mark on the entertainment industry. Who could forget the sensational ‘Jenifa’ franchise that evolved into the series ‘Jenifa’s Diaries’ and kept viewers entertained. 

Funke’s talents extend beyond acting; she’s also a director, entrepreneur, and an award-winning producer with acclaimed projects like ‘She Must Be Obeyed,’ ‘Your Excellency,’ ‘Omo Ghetto,’ ‘Battle on Buka Street,’ and the latest ‘A Tribe Called Judah’.

Read Also: Nollywood: Funke Akindele-Bello’s Omo Ghetto becomes highest-grossing movie

Funke has and still remains an inspiration to many up-and-coming filmmakers, especially to female filmmakers, to break boundaries and ceilings of limitations. Her three films in the pandemic era are the highest-grossing African films according to Comscore, which gave out awards at the META Cinema Forum for this feat. In addition, her films have also made international box office records, achieving the highest-grossing feats in the U.K and U.S. for ‘A Tribe Called Judah’ and ‘Battle on Buka Street’.

Spotlighting her in this year’s NIFS@Cannes at a global center stage aims to broaden her global reach while aiming for major international co-production opportunities and collaborations presented at the 77th Edition of the Cannes International Film Festival, especially for her upcoming 2025 projects.

Funke remains a national treasure to the Nigerian film industry and is getting more recognition not only in Nollywood but also in the global film industry, as she has remained committed to telling authentic and original African stories for significant impact and elevation of the richness of African talent to the world.

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