Nollywood's post-pandemic success, rakes in N1.26 billion in Q1 2022 – Businessday

While movie ticket sales were certainly improved at the tail end of 2021, Nollywood box office revenues for the first quarter of 2022 have shown a steady rise amid a new landscape dominated by streaming services. According to data sources from insightful cinema, Nollywood’s box office revenue for Q1 2022 trumped that of 2021 by 50 percent earning over N1.26 billion at the box office, a staggering post-pandemic record when compared to N843 million for Q1 2021.
Kevin Luther Apaa’s ‘Dinner at my place (2022)’ stood out among its other first-quarter releases crossing N11 million on the opening weekend followed by A Simple Lie (2022). Apaa released a short film version of the movie in 2019 which won a few awards and from the success of that with an estimated budget of N32.5 million ($78,000), made the feature film version for the silver screens.
The pandemic which started at the end of the first quarter of 2020 brought a halt to what was a promising start of a new decade and at movie cinemas, the promise of a good year was already coming to pass. The first quarter of 2020 (N1.40 billion) had already slightly surpassed the previous year’s Q1 Box office revenue( N1.39 billion) and raised the hopes of filmmakers and cinema outlets.
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As the pandemic began, the film industry began to see a downward spiral in revenue and by the end of March 2020 recorded a total of N28 million 7-day gross. Despite the low returns, Q1 2020 maintained its stand as the highest-grossing quarter ever but the damage the pandemic was to bring thereafter was imminent affecting the rest of the year and the first quarter of 2021.
Despite the heroics of Omo Ghetto: The Saga at the end of 2020, the box office in the first quarter of 2021 performed poorly raking in only N843 million, which was only 60 percent of 2020’s total gross of N1.4 billion.
For moviegoers, December 2021 marked the conclusion of the pandemic era and the beginning of a new age in 2022. Despite the fact that total box office results for Q1 2021 were fairly low, they improved towards the end of the year, and Q4 2021 ended up being the most successful quarter in three years, with over N1.5 billion in returns.
Hollywood blockbusters such as Spiderman: No Way Home, which became the biggest movie in Nigerian cinemas, and The King’s Man, with a supporting Nollywood film that included Aki and Pawpaw, and Christmas in Miami, which had a huge success in December 2021 and spilled over into 2022, played a big role in the nudge.
Depending on the industry every distributor knows the ideal date to release movies that would bring in the huge numbers box office-wise. In many countries, the beginning of summer is the catch and for Nollywood it’s Christmas.
Data suggest that the box office in January is impacted by movies released in December depending on how well they did at Christmas. According to Insightful between 2019 and 2022, all of the top 10 grossing movies in January except Bad Boys For Life (2020) were released in December of the previous year.
The data provided might not give us a true sense of how Q2 would turn out, but upcoming Nollywood movies like ‘Ile Owo(House of money)’, ‘Choke’, ‘A true blue June’ alongside Hollywood movie influencers like Top Gun; Maverick, Thor Love and Thunder, Jurassic World Dominion and Lightyear are set to pull moviegoers to boost box office revenue during the quarter.
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Business Day, established in 2001, is a daily business newspaper based in Lagos. It is the only Nigerian newspaper with a bureau in Accra, Ghana. It has both daily and Sunday titles. It circulates in Nigeria and Ghana
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