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‘The Musical controversy’ House of Oduduwa, Austen-Peters battle for Moremi soul

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A controversy is brewing between the House of Oduduwa and Bolanle Austen-Peters Productions over the intellectual right to the Moremi the Musical.

Recall that Bolanle Austen-Peters, despite objections from the House of Oduduwa, announced the successful screen of the controversial stage play with almost about 40,000 views.

According to a statement signed by the producer of Moremi the Musical, Joseph Umoibom, while reiterating that it ownership belongs to BAP, stated that the stage play was its own contribution in ameliorating the effect of coronavirus lockdown.

“It was like our own CSR to Nigerians and, more importantly, a gift to our teeming fans all over the world and to the cast and crew of the play whose sweat and labour of love have once again been appreciated by the wonderful comments while the streaming was on.

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“We have the right on the intellectual property ownership of the play, as the signed MoU is a legal document that clearly stipulates the rights and entitlements of the collaborating parties on the project,” he said.

But the House of Oduduwa thought otherwise.

The House of Oduduwa insisted that Bolanle Austen-Peters didn’t have the right to stream the stage online as IP right wasn’t part of the signed agreement.

“Mrs Bolanle Austen- Peters did not tell the world the full story of her infringement of Intellectual Property Rights in ‘Moremi The Musical’ written, produced and performed under an agreement between Bolanle Austen Peters Productions (BAP) and House of Oduduwa Foundation (HoOF).

“In September 2018, the two parties entered into an agreement where BAP was commissioned to adapt and deliver the Moremi script for stage performance of Moremi The Musical in Nigeria and abroad,” HoOF claimed.

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It was also alleged that BAP was fully paid for delivering the stage performances including payment for the use of its TerraKulture venue.

“In due recourse to Mrs. Austen-Peters, the play was billed to continue in December 2019. However, Mrs. Bolanle Austen-Peters refused to participate because she was busy with other plans. We pleaded with her to no avail. We had paid for the venue. She told us to cancel. We had no other choice than to commission another production company with their own choreography, music and direction to deliver the stage performance at InterContinental, at an additional huge cost to HoOF.

“The question we asked ourselves was; should we be stuck with Mrs. Austen-Peters’ personal programmes or preferences when we knew we own the intellectual property rights and we could commission new production, especially after her refusal?”

That was the disagreement HoOF had with BAP or so it thought it was the only disagreement.

“Little did we know she could go as far as embarking on streaming the play on YouTube when she knew that was far outside her domain because she did not own the IP rights.”

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The HoOF lamented that it was unfortunate for a professional to act in such a way and unapologetically breach an agreement.

“It is unfortunate that those who ought to know better can chose to embark on actions in breach of the law.

“For the avoidance of doubt, BAP does not own the intellectual property rights in Moremi The Musical and clearly she could not have owned the rights in the original script or the trademark – “Queen Moremi Ajansoro” belonging to the HoOF, neither does she have the right to exploit the work in the digital media as she has flagrantly done in what she has called her ‘version of the play’.

“No ethical entity in the creative or any industry at all would tread that path in infringement of Intellectual Property Rights if they are not under the impression that they are above the law.

“It is now her lot to rush to the public arena to justify her unlawful and illegal act.”

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The HoOF threatened not to let such attitude fly by without due action.

“We promise every well-meaning lover of arts that we will not allow this unlawful act to stand, not to the utter disdain on the office of Ooni & the House of Oduduwa Foundation,” the statement read.

How this friction will pan out, the coming days is pregnant.

The House of Oduduwa Foundation in an ongoing commitment to relentless service to humanity, is a vocal advocate for the less privileged, driven by His Imperial Majesty, Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi, Ojaja II.

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Double Tees Productions Unveils ‘Aiyefele’ – A Cinematic Masterpiece of Resilience and Redemption

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Double Tees Productions, a renowned film production company, is delighted to announce the upcoming cinema release of its highly anticipated epic film, “Aiyefele.”

Scheduled to premiere on April 5, 2024, at Odeon Cinema in major cities across the United Kingdom, “Aiyefele” promises audiences an unforgettable cinematic experience filled with emotion, intrigue, and profound storytelling.

Set against the backdrop of colonial Nigeria and 18th-century England, “Aiyefele” unfolds the captivating narrative of a community teetering on the brink of despair. Plagued by a devastating epidemic, the inhabitants grapple with the clash between their traditional beliefs and the “visitor ”
The community faces existential threats, battling against self-destructive customs and malevolent forces, until an unexpected figure emerges to lead them towards liberation and hope.

Featuring a stellar ensemble cast comprising esteemed actors from the UK and Nigeria, including Odun Adekola, Mercy Aigbe, Femi Branch, Lucien Morgan, Desiree Faust, Bimbo Oshin, Biola Adebayo, Rotimi Salami, Dapo Opayinka, and Lara Aiyeomoni, “Aiyefele” promises to immerse audiences in a world of profound loss, sacrifice, and self-reflection.

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Toyin Moore and Tayo Utomi, passionate independent producers known for their commitment to thought-provoking storytelling, spearhead the project.

With a dedication to artistic excellence, “Aiyefele” pushes the boundaries of cinema, offering viewers a transformative cinematic experience.

The distribution of “Aiyefele” is managed by Evrit Films, ensuring widespread accessibility to audiences across the UK.

Film Credits:

Executive Producers: Oluwatoyin Moore, Omotayo Utomi
Director: Seun Olaiya
Original Story: Toyin Moore
Director of Photography (DOP): Babatunde Taiwo
Script: Moshood Yakubu Olawale
Linear Producer: Olakunle Olabode

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UK Unit:

Producer: Toyin Moore
Director: Niyi Towolawi
Director of Photography (DOP): Babatunde Michael

For media inquiries and further information, please contact:

Tayo Utomi
Phone: +447506008654
Email: Tayoutomi@gmail.com

Toyin Moore
Phone: +447496115260
Email: oyemi10770@gmail.com

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K1 to Tinubu: Nigerians are crying, suffering, wailing daily over high cost of food, poor living condition

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Renowned musician King Wasiu Ayinde, popularly known as K1, has made an appeal to President Bola Tinubu, urging him to address the challenges faced by Nigerians amidst the soaring cost of living, food, and essential items.

K1, a staunch supporter of President Tinubu and the All Progressives Congress (APC), played a pivotal role in Tinubu’s presidential victory, leveraging his influence in entertainment and social circles.

In an open letter addressed to the President and also in a video, K1 emphasized the urgent need for a reassessment of economic policies to alleviate the burdens of ordinary Nigerians.

The musician particularly highlighted the alarming depreciation of the Naira against the U.S. dollar, which has contributed significantly to the prevailing economic hardships.

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Expressing concern over the mounting socio-economic cries and sufferings of the populace, K1 urged President Tinubu to implement measures that would provide relief to the common man.

He underscored the disillusionment among voters who, having supported Tinubu in the 2023 elections, now felt disheartened by the lack of visible improvements in their daily lives.

Acknowledging the accusations directed at him for influencing people’s votes, K1 remained optimistic that President Tinubu would soon enact policies to reverse the current tide.

Despite the criticisms, the musician reaffirmed his belief in Tinubu’s leadership and expressed hope that the president would prioritize the welfare of the Nigerian people.

As K1 urged a review of economic strategies, he also stressed the importance of pushing out palliatives to cushion the impact on citizens.

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The open letter served as both a plea and a call to action, encouraging President Tinubu to address the concerns of a nation in distress and reaffirm the faith placed in his leadership during the electoral process.

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Showmax unveils refreshed brand, expanded content lineup across Africa

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Showmax, the popular streaming service in Africa, has introduced its enhanced platform, featuring a refreshed brand and a vast content lineup, signaling a new era for viewers on the continent. This development comes ten months after MultiChoice, Comcast’s NBCUniversal, and Sky announced a collaborative streaming vision for Africa.

The revamped Showmax app is set to be available in app stores starting January 23, 2024, as part of a phased rollout across 44 markets. The streaming platform aims to offer an unparalleled streaming experience, with a focus on both local and international content.

A significant highlight is the introduction of the world’s first standalone Premier League plan for mobile, known as Showmax Premier League. Priced at just N2,900 a month, this plan will provide access to all 380 Premier League games, offering a game-changing product for football enthusiasts across Africa.

Showmax offers two additional plans: Showmax Entertainment on mobile for N1,200 a month and Showmax Entertainment for N2,500 a month. The diverse plans cater to various preferences and viewing habits, making streaming accessible to a broader audience.

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Opeoluwa Filani, the GM of Showmax Nigeria, emphasized the strategic pricing of the Showmax Premier League plan, aligning with the massive smartphone penetration and the significant football fanbase in Africa. Richard Masters, CEO of the Premier League, expressed delight at the initiative, recognizing Africa’s importance to the Premier League.

At the core of Showmax’s streaming ambitions is a robust technical platform built to scale. Leveraging the Peacock streaming platform, which is active in over 70 countries, Showmax benefits from a world-class infrastructure that has successfully delivered major events, including the Super Bowl, FIFA World Cup, Olympics, and WrestleMania.

Showmax’s content library is set to expand with the introduction of 21 new Showmax Originals in February, including five Nigerian Originals. The platform aims to produce over 1,300 hours of original content in the coming year, marking a 150% increase in production output.

Showmax’s partnership with Comcast’s NBCUniversal and Sky ensures access to a diverse range of international content, including titles from Universal Pictures, Focus Features, NBC, Peacock, DreamWorks Animation, and Telemundo. The content lineup spans movies, drama series, and original productions.

John Ugbe, CEO of West Africa at MultiChoice, emphasized Showmax’s focus on the African market, building on MultiChoice’s deep understanding of the continent. The streaming service aims to revolutionize streaming in Africa in 2024, with competitive pricing, offline viewing options, and a growing network of payment options.

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Existing Showmax customers will receive information on accessing the new app, with the complete rollout scheduled to be completed by February 12, 2024. Showmax’s commitment to delivering quality content and a seamless streaming experience positions it as a leading player in the African streaming landscape.

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