President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has felicitated with ace actress and producer Funke Akindele over her blockbuster, A Tribe Called Judah, becoming the first Nigerian film to gross N1 billion.
Akindele broke the news on her Instagram page as she shared the one billion naira feat flier, writing excitedly, “Thank You LORD!!!, Thank NIGERIA!! Thank you GHANA!!”
The movie was released in cinemas on December 15, 2023 and continued to break records, becoming the first to gross over N133 million in its opening weekend.
A Tribe Called Judah became the highest-grossing Nollywood film for the year 2023 after grossing over N613 million within the first 14 days of its release.
Earlier, it had made history on January 2 as the highest-grossing Nollywood film ever with a reported N854 million at the box office within 18 days in the cinemas.
This feat has surpassed Akindele’s previous films Battle on Buka Street (N668.4 million), and Omo Ghetto (N636.1 million) which now sit as the second and third highest grossing films at the Nigerian box office respectively.
A Tribe Called Judah was directed by Adeoluwa Owu, popularly known as Captain Degzy, and was distributed by FilmOne Entertainment.
The star-studded movie features seasoned actors such as Ikpe Etim, Funke Akindele, Timini Egbuson, Ebelle Okaro, Uzor Arukwe, Genoveva Umeh, and Nosa Rex.
Others are Boma Akpore, Ebele Okaro-Onyiuke, Etinosa Idemudia, Fathia Balogun, Jide Achufusi, Olayode Juliana, Olumide Oworu, Paschaline Alex, Tobi Makinde, Uzor Arukwe and Yvonne Jegede.
According to Akindele, the plot of the film revolves around a woman called Jedidah Judah, who has five sons from five different men, all belonging to different tribes.
She said: “The story is so dear to my heart and it has a part of my late mum in it, and it represents the struggles faced by many single parents and mothers in society.”
The movie is currently showing in cinemas in Ghana and the United Kingdom.
While congratulating her, President Tinubu commended her for her contributions to the growth of the industry.
In a statement by his spokesman, Chief Ajuri Ngelale, the president extolled the creative industry’s pivotal place as a medium not only for artistic expression but also a source of enormous soft power and viable export.
He said: “The creative industry is one of the high-employment sectors, providing jobs for our able and talented youths. It is an industry that is crucial to my administration.
“I salute Nigerians for their enduring support and patronage of home-grown creative efforts.
“We will provide a conducive environment for the industry to thrive further.”