Film Business

Too Arrogant For Nollywood? Genevieve Nnaji Sets the Record Straight. Denies Calling Nollywood “Bland” and “Mediocre.”

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Genevieve Nnaji was allegedly, in recent times, interviewed by the Punch Newspaper. Upon being asked why she is barely see on the big screens these days, she allegedly replied that she no longer appeared as much because she now curates scripts sent her way.

She also allegedly claimed Nollywood was “bland and mediocre.” An industry colleague upset with her comments had a few words to say to her. Well Nnaji has now responded to the comments and also indicates she did never even made the alleged statements.

First, good for her. Nnaji, needless, to say needs to control her personal brand. Already, there is so much discussion and statements about her relevance in the industry given her diminishing role on the big screens.

Second,  almost ten years ago, when I met Nnaji at a Nollywood event I helped co-organize in the USA, she was explicit she wanted to be a film director because she believed we needed more women in those roles in Nollywood. She said it so boldly the room applauded her. Fast forward now, many like Stephanie Linus (Okereke), Rita Dominic and even Ini Edo have gone behind the cameras. What’s the hold up on Nnaji’s end? I’d like to see her move forward with more diverse roles in the industry, not just waiting on scripts from others or endorsement deals from brands.



“I guess I haven’t found the right script yet. Creativity and depth are the qualities that I look out for in a script. In the beginning, the movie industry emphasised quantity but things are changing and there is an improvement in trend. I am among the people who advocate for the improvement of the industry. So said, I am constantly watching out for the kind of stories I take part in. I am in support of movies that show a great deal of professionalism and creativity. Having practiced my art in international & professionally produced stories like ‘Ije’; ‘Mirror boy;’ and ‘Tango with me’, I don’t think I can return to the blandness and mediocrity that characterized Nollywood in the past.” – Genevieve Nnaji | Punch Newspaper

“Genevieve has just insulted the industry that made her who she is today and what effort has she made to help improve Nollywood? Those days in Enugu when Genevieve was growing in Nollywood, our movies were not rubbish; she has grown now, made money, fame, popularity e.t.c, how much has she invested in this Industry that made her? All the while she was busy waiting for Titanic scripts, Nollywood was trying their best to keep the flag flying waiting for her to come back and take the industry to the next level. Artistes should stop biting the fingers that fed them. We are watching and waiting for them to bring down heaven. We made them stars; we are waiting for them to come back and take the industry to the next level. Instead of blasting Nollywood, come and improve Nollywood.” Mac Collins Chidebe

Nnaji’s Response
“I never called my industry bland and mediocre. Truth or not, they were NOT MY WORDS. As a person/writer, you can “assume” what you like about my thought process but DO not project those thoughts as “quotes” by me.

It’s distasteful, insensitive and quite unprofessional. It’s insulting to those limited few working hard to make a difference in the industry. I am a product of Nollywood and my loyalty remains unshaken.”


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Africa Music Law™

AFRICA MUSIC LAW™ (AML) is a pioneering music business and entertainment law blog and podcast show by Fashion and Entertainment Lawyer Ms. Uduak Oduok empowering the African artist and Africa's rapidly evolving entertainment industry through brilliant music business and entertainment law commentary and analysis, industry news, and exclusive interviews.

Credited for several firsts in the fashion and entertainment industry, Ms. Uduak is also a Partner and Co-Founder of Ebitu Law Group, P.C. where she handles her law firm’s intellectual property law, media, business, fashion, and entertainment law practice areas. She has litigated a wide variety of cases in California courts and handled a variety of entertainment deals for clients in the USA, Africa, and Asia.

Her work and contributions to the creative industry have been recognized by numerous organizations including the National Bar Association, The American University School of Law and featured in prestigious legal publications in the USA including ABA Journal and The California Lawyer Magazine. She is also an Adjunct Professor at the prestigious Academy of Arts University in San Francisco.
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