Life in Lagos: The Rising Stars of Nollywood Films

*****

Beads of sweat ran from Ewe’s glossy, hairless head, down his bare chest, and over his portly belly. Between swigs from an unmarked plastic bottle and drags from his cigarette, he barked orders at actors, the soundman, the light engineers, the make-up artists, and occasionally the photographer: me. All of us were crammed into a tiny, stuffy living room for a scene of his latest Nollywood film, Who Is the Stupid Wife?

Nollywood is Nigeria’s film industry. It’s big. Nigerian cinema grew quickly in the 1990s and 2000s. It is now the second largest film industry in the world in terms of number of films produced each year—an estimated 200 films a month, placing it ahead of the United States and

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