By Caleb Melilink-Smith

Nollywood is a world-renouned film center based in Africa (specifically Nigeria) similar to Hollywood or Bollywod in India. The difference between Nollywood and other industries is that many people have never heard of Nollywood, despite it being the third largest producer in the world of feature films.

     The Nollywood film industry focuses on very small budgets and producing films incredibly fast. The production of an average Nollywood film takes only 10 days and 15 thousand dollars. To put this in perspective, the recent film, Guardians of the Galaxy,  took two years and 170 million dollars to make. This industry also creates about 500-1000 films per year, most of which go straight to DVD or VHS, from 300 producers selling about 50,000 copies per film.

The Nollywood industry also faces unique problems that usually do not arise in the Hollywood industry. The productions are harassed by gangs and thugs, extorted for money, and many movie stars act in several films at a time. This can often lead to scheduling problems, and considering filming only lasts 10 days delays are incredibly inconvenient.

Nollywood films have become popular in Nigerian culture because their themes usually focus on problems the people of Nigeria face daily such as crooked leadership, prostitution, and HIV/AIDS. The films are also successful due to crime; many Nigerians stay inside at night due to gangs making traveling difficult, so the films give people something to do.

One must wonder how this industry will progress with its current audience limited to Nigeria. Still, the internet has helped it grow, along with an attempt to reduce piracy and gain support from the Nigerian government. As one of Africa’s fastest growing markets, it is imperative for those involved in film to keep an eye on this industry and its development. Nollywood will continue to grow as it continues to bring and circulate money through Nigeria; now the only question is how big and how fast.