The 2018 Hollywood film, “Black Panther“, which was based on a fictional African country, Wakanda, became a big blockbuster success, and there has been an increased effort to highlight African Superheroes since then.
Nigeria’s Comic Republic, an independent comic book publisher, has inked a production deal with Emagine Content and JackieBoy Entertainment to adapt its catalogue of African superheroes for film and television.
They want to tell African stories uniquely.
“It’s a great time to be alive. We are in a world where diversity has taken centre stage”, said Jide Martin, CEO of Comic Republic. “We are thrilled to be working with Emagine Content and Jackie Boy to bring our heroes and stories to the big screen but mostly because we get the chance to be a part of black history.”
The collaboration’s first project is a feature film adaptation titled “Ireti“, whom the companies describe as the first “African female superhero.” According to the companies, the new project would “portray a positive global influence of Africa and negate previous misconceptions.”
As reported by Hollywood Reporter, Comic Republic has published African-themed titles such as “Ireti”, which tells the story of a university student in Ibadan, Nigeria who is endowed with superpowers, “Aje“, a fantasy title inspired by Yoruba spirituality and mysticism, and “The Vanguards“, which features an Avengers-style team of superheroes. The majority of the titles in the publisher’s catalogue are based on traditional African mythology, folktales, and culture.
“This deal is a major push towards diversity on the silver screen for black superheroes,” added Emagine CEO, Ben Phelps. “The time is now to showcase heroes of all different backgrounds…The ability to create role models for future generations to come is a unique opportunity that comes with an important responsibility to make sure the storytelling is authentic. For us, finding a partnership that is looking to be a disruptive force with good morals is everything.”