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Film industry in anglophone West-Africa - statistics & facts

The film industry in West-Africa is booming, with Nigerian productions being the largest in the region and in all of Africa. In terms of revenue, Nigeria generates the largest share of box office revenue in anglophone West Africa. The high percentage is directly related to the large population of Nigeria (over 200 million people), compared to the smaller populations of Liberia and Ghana. In 2019, the box office revenue originating from Liberia, Ghana, and Nigeria amounted to approximately 16 million U.S. dollars, with a total of over five million admissions. Hollywood movies hold most of the revenue across Liberia, Ghana, and Nigeria. Nevertheless, Nollywood movies represent the second most valuable cinematography productions in this region.

The largest cinemas in anglophone West-Africa are mostly located in Nigeria and Ghana, while in Liberia no movie theater has more than 500 seats. As of 2019, the biggest movie theaters were in the capital cities of Abuja and in Accra, two sites of Silverbird Cinemas. In fact, many large movie theaters belong to the chain Silverbird Cinemas. Some other large cinema chains across anglophone West-Africa are Lighthouse, Filmhouse, and Genesis. In 2019, the average price for a movie ticket across Liberia, Ghana, and Nigeria was 3.44 U.S. dollars. The tickets are, in relation to people's average salaries, quite expensive. For instance, in Nigeria, the minimum living wage is estimated to be around 110 U.S. dollars per month. Similarly, in Ghana the average wage is roughly 155 U.S. dollars.

In 2019, most of the titles released across anglophone West-Africa were produced by Nollywood. Hollywood and Bollywood movies were the second and third most popular productions in this region. The same year, the most successful Nollywood movie in anglophone West-Africa was Living in Bondage (Breaking Free). This Nigerian production recorded a gross box office revenue of over 400 thousand U.S. dollars in Liberia, Ghana, and Nigeria. Some other best-selling motion pictures from Nollywood were Merry Men 2, Bling Lagosians, and Your Excellency, each of which gained more then 300 U.S. thousand dollars in box office revenue. However, Hollywood movies were more profitable by far. In 2019, the most successful Hollywood production among audiences was Avengers: Endgame. This Disney production recorded a gross box office revenue of some 1.5 million U.S. dollars in the region. The Lion King and Fast & Furious: Hobbs & Shaw, also Disney productions, followed.

The film industry represents an important source of income and employment for West-Africa. According to recent data from 2020, the whole sector of arts, entertainment, and recreation accounted for 0.22 percent of Nigeria's GDP. Nollywood has also received some financial support such as loans and grants by the Nigerian government. The grants were supported by the government's Project Act Nollywood, an investment aiming to gain better productions, distribution networks, and capacity building. Furthermore, this sector employed over five thousand people in Ghana. One other source of revenue comes from advertising in cinematography productions. In Ghana and Nigeria, the has increased in recent years.

Film industry in anglophone West-Africa

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