In celebration of the International Women’s Day, Pulse Movies highlight some of the most inspiring female directors and producers who are making impact in Nollywood industry, in no particular order.

Mo Abudu

Ever since Mo Abudu ventured into filmmaking, she has turned herself into a reputable auteur and a force on both the big screen.

Mo Abudu is the Chief Executive Officer of EbonyLife TV and films. [Instagram/MoAbudu]
Mo Abudu is the Chief Executive Officer of EbonyLife TV and films. [Instagram/MoAbudu]

Her magic wand produced top Nollywood blockbusters like ‘The Wedding Party’ franchise, ‘Fifty,’ ‘The Royal Hotel Hibiscus.’ Abudu was also responsible for some TV production that includes ‘The Governor,’ ‘Desperate Housewives Africa,’ ‘Sons of the Caliphate,’ and ‘Fifty the Series.’

‘The Wedding Party’ and ‘The Wedding Party: Destination Dubai,’ which grossed hundreds of millions of Naira, are huge success currently ranking as the top two highest grossing Nollywood movies.

In 2017, Abudu was mentioned in The Hollywood Reporter’s annual list of the ‘25 Most Powerful Women in Global Television alongside Angelica Guerra (Latin America), Jane Tranter and Julie Gardner(United Kingdom).

In 2018, Abudu made headlines again with ‘Chief Daddy’ after which she got herself a seat as one of the academy directors for the prestigious Emmys.

Biola Alabi

Biola Alabi is notable for spearheading the berth of one of Africa’s biggest movie awards, Africa Magic Viewers Choice Awards, while she worked with Multichoice Nigeria.

Managing partner at Biola Alabi Media Consulting Firm, Biola Alabi
Managing partner at Biola Alabi Media Consulting Firm, Biola Alabi

After her exit from the cable TV company, Alabi began working on her production house, Biola Alabi Media. The company delved into movie production and have successfully found space as a major player in the industry.

With the production of ‘Banana Island Ghost’ and ‘Lara & the beat,’ the company has made an impactful contribution to Nollywood.

Alabi went a step further to host a TV show on Arise Network. She has since been a host of the TV station coverage of the Academy Awards, Oscars since 2017.

Kemi Adetiba

Kemi Adetiba carved a niche for herself after shot series of music videos for top Nigerian musicians that included Olamide and Niyola.

Kemi Adetiba has become a leading light for several female filmmakers with her success.
Kemi Adetiba has become a leading light for several female filmmakers with her success.

A graduate of the New York Film Academy, Adetiba has worked as an On-Air Presenter, TV show host before she started shooting music videos.

A filmmaker, and television director whose works have appeared on Channel O, MTV Base, Soundcity TV, and BET, Kemi Adetiba made her entry into Nollywood when she worked on ‘Wedding Party 1’ for EbonyLife films.

Adetiba was also responsible for some issue based series and documentaries that include ‘Brotherhood’ and ‘King Women.’

The success of the feature film saw her making her second feature film, ‘King Of Boys,’ a political thriller that ruled 2018.

Aside from breaking her own record with ‘The Wedding Party 1,’ Adetiba was listed as a game changer in 2019.

According to a Nigerian economist, Bismarck Rewane, Kemi Adetiba amongst the 15 people who he believes will shape the country’s economy.

Tope Oshin

Tope Oshin was the only female director on M-Net’s hit soap opera ‘Tinsel’ in its first five seasons – she shot about 350 episodes of the show.

Tope Oshin's movies in 2018 got several movie awards nominations.
Tope Oshin’s movies in 2018 got several movie awards nominations.

She has produced and directed several acclaimed movies such as ‘Fifty,’ ‘Journey to Self,’ ‘In Line’ among others.

She is also known for directing series such as ‘Hush,’ ‘Hotel Majestic,’ ‘The Apprentice Africa,’ ‘Shuga’ (Season 3 and 6).

Oshin has also directed several short films including ‘The Young Smoker’, ‘Till Death Do Us Part’ and ‘New Horizons.’

In 2016, she directed the documentary, “Amaka’s Kin: The Women Of Nollywood,” a memorial to influential filmmaker Amaka Igwe, who died in 2014, and had before her death, paved the way for most female filmmakers.

In 2017, she shot the critically acclaimed movie, ‘We don’t live here anymore’ and in 2018, she returned to the cinemas with ‘Up North.’

Genevieve Nnaji

Genevieve Nnaji is one of the accomplished Nigerian movie stars with mentions in international media.

Genevieve Nnaji made a first with her movie, 'Lionheart,' which was released in 2018.[YouTube/MPM Premium]
Genevieve Nnaji made a first with her movie, ‘Lionheart,’ which was released in 2018.[YouTube/MPM Premium]

The actress has featured in over 200 movies since her career kicked off 20 years ago. She also featured in the film ‘Half of a Yellow Sun’ based on Chimamanda Ngozi’s book of the same name about the Nigerian-Biafran War from 1967-70.

In 2015, Nnaji made her debut as a producer when she co-produced ‘Road to yesterday’ which she also featured in.

In 2018, she made her directorial debut with the movie, ‘Lionheart.’ The movie became the first Nollywood movie to be acquired by Netflix before release. It was premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival and got good reviews.

Nnaji has since signed a management deal with a top US talent management firm and has been working on new grounds to break into Hollywood.

Bolanle Austen-Peters

The managing director and founder of renowned Arts and Cultural organisation, Terra Culture, Bolanle Austen-Peters ventured into filmmaking with “93 Days,” a stirring depiction of how the deadly Ebola virus was contained in Lagos.

Bolanle Austen-Peters' directorial debut, 'The Blings Lagosians' features top Nollywood actors. [Instagram/TheBlingsLagosians]
Bolanle Austen-Peters’ directorial debut, ‘The Blings Lagosians’ features top Nollywood actors. [Instagram/TheBlingsLagosians]

Bolanle Austen-Peters Production is popular for producing critically acclaimed musicals such as “SARO the Musical,” “WAKAA!” and “FELA and the Kalakuta Queens.”

In 2018, Bolanle Austen-Peters took it a notch higher as she made her directorial debut by shooting her second feature film, ‘The Blings Lagosians.’

Biodun Stephens

Biodun Stephens resigned her job as an On-Air Presenter to study filmmaking and scriptwriting at the London film academy.

Biodun Stephens is a filmmaker and writer that has been impacting the Nigerian movie industry. [Biodun Stephens]
Biodun Stephens is a filmmaker and writer that has been impacting the Nigerian movie industry. [Biodun Stephens]

Upon her return, she immersed herself into making a change in Nollywood and partnered with Koga Entertainment to make the movie, ‘The Visit,’ which went on to open doors for her.

Working with several individuals, Stephens made headlines again with the interesting drama, ‘Picture Perfect’ in 2017.

In 2018, Stephens joins Tope Oshin as one of the female filmmakers working with M-Net and Multichoice Nigeria to create content for Africa Magic.

Stephens is billed to released a faith-based feature film, ‘Joba’ in 2019.



Credit: pulse.ng

In an Instagram post, the director of ‘Wedding Party 1’ expressed how emotional she got finding out the success of her movie.

She wrote,

If you know the journey it took to get here, you’ll understand why I’m emotional right now. God. Is. The. Greatest!!! #Hardwork#Consistency #GraceOfGod
#KOBFEVER #KOBSeason#KOBStillNumberOne Congratulations to the cast, the crew and everyone that has shown us goodwill!!!

The filmmaker went further to note that the movie starring Sola Sobowale, Reminisce, IllBliss, Toni Tones and Adesua Etomi-Wellington has remained on the number one spot for the seven weeks.

Adetiba also announced that the movie is the fourth highest grossing Nollywood movie of all time and the longest running film at the number one spot in Nigerian territory.

Credit: pulse.ng

Over the weekend, Stephanie Linus was invited to speak to the students at Dillard University

The filmmaker, human rights advocate and actress was invited to celebrate the school’s annual Ray Charles Week.

During her visit, she gave a lecture on “The Emergence of African Storytellers and Their New Narrative” and also screened her self-produced and directed movie ‘Dry’ which focuses on fistula and the practice of under-age marriage among young women.

The award-winning actress told the group of young college students at Dillard University in New Orleans:

You have the power to change the narrative of every wrong representation of who you think you are. There is so much you can achieve by telling a story. When I think of a story, I think of it as a connection between myself and my audience, an opportunity for me to take them on a journey that inspires them to learn about themselves and the world around them.

Speaking at the Ray Charles Week hosted by Dillard University Ray Charles Program, Dillard University Film and Dillard University African World Student Organization, the filmmaker encouraged the college students to tap into the power of the media and growth in technology to create a new narrative for themselves.

The media is such a powerful tool of influence that if used properly, can bring about a positive change in almost every sphere of life. It is time for you to look inside yourselves and see the gaps within your society, and find ways to fill these gaps with your narratives. I ask you here today, what is your story? What is that new narrative you desire when you think of black people and black history and what kind of impact do you want it to create?

She encouraged the students to be fearless about telling their stories, adding that by doing so, they could create a better representation of themselves and who they ought to be.

Credit: Bella Naija

Nollywood actress and film maker, Stephanie Okereke Linus has been invited to screen her movie, ‘Dry’ which was produced in 2014, at 2018 Ray Charles Week which will hold at the Dillard University, New Orleans, Lousiana, U.S.A on the 25th and 26th of October, 2018.


Stephanie Linus will also give a lecture at the university on Thursday, 25th of October, 2018 while the movie screening will be on Friday, 26th of October, 2018.


Stephanie will be speaking on “The Emergence of African Storytellers and Their New Narrative” at Dillard University. Stephanie will also be joining a list of speakers from previous editions, which includes Denzel Washington and Tunde Wey.

The movie ‘Dry’ was mostly shot in the Northern part of Nigeria and produced in 2014.
Credit: fabwoman.ng

Shonda Rhimes is on one of the eight covers for Elle‘s Women in Hollywood issue and the television producer – who is behind shows like Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal – spoke about how she’s making TV that represents everyone, talking to her daughters about success and more.

Read excerpts below.

On her deal with Netflix: I keep hearing about how I got lured away as if somebody wagged a piece of candy in front of me. But really, it was me deciding I had a vision, and [Netflix’s chief content officer] Ted Sarandos shared that vision. I wanted to be able to decide what kind of shows we were going to make and how we were going to make them. So to have that kind of power has been an amazing experience so far. It’s also a little bit like Christmas because there’s a very ‘Yes, we can’ attitude. Almost so much that we have to be careful what we ask for, like, ‘Don’t ask for the moon, because they will build you the moon.’

On making shows with representation:It’s hugely important, but I didn’t know how conscious it was until I was inducted into the Television Academy Hall of Fame. I was trying to figure out my speech, and I realized it was about how you cannot be what you cannot see. I talked about having grown up watching Oprah every single day of my life. How this was a woman of color, who did not look a certain way, who was [based in] Chicago, and who took over the world through television, basically. When I started writing TV shows, I wanted to represent everybody, because it should look like the real world. It should feel normal when you turn on the television and see people who look like you.

On what she tells her daughters about success: For a long time, my oldest daughter thought I was a doctor, because I was always at work, and it was a hospital. Now she’s 16, so she doesn’t think that anymore. My little ones are six and four and think there’s a land called Shonda. They don’t really understand how it relates to their mother, but it’s nice that they understand that women go to work and enjoy it and that you can have a business and be in charge.

For more from Shonda, visit  Elle.com!

Credit: Bella Naija

Nigerian-American, Nkechi Okoro Carroll is the showrunner of All American, the CW acclaimed new teen drama.

Nkechi Okoro Carroll took over as showrunner after the show’s creator, April Blair stepped aside last week for personal reasons. Nkechi plans to take charge of the storytelling by getting the show to tackle serious issues, ranging from gang violence to NFL protests.

Nkechi grew up in four different countries, Nigeria, Cote D’Ivoire, England and the US. She created several short films that were featured in film festivals on multiple continents, including Africa, Europe and North America.

The success of her short films caught the attention of certain executives in Hollywood, which moved her from working as a senior trader and analyst to taking on several roles at the Fox Broadcasting Company — from story editor for Bones to producer of Rosewood and The Resident.

According to her, when she read the script for All American, she believed in it and wanted to see it through:

“As the mother of two black boys, I want to see this show on television. So I’ve been involved since the start, and when April stepped down and Greg asked if I would be interested in stepping up into the showrunner position, I was happy and excited to do it.

We’ve got an amazing creative team here, and we look forward to continuing to tell these stories that I think haven’t really been told on network TV.”

Daniel Ezra and Samantha Logan in ‘All American’(Photo: Jesse Giddings/The CW)

All American is based on the real events of former pro football player, Spencer Paysinger’s life, and the show follows Spencer (Daniel Ezra), a rising football star from who is recruited by the football coach at a prestigious high school, introducing him to a world vastly different from his.

But Spencer isn’t leaving his home behind ­– he’ll live and study in Beverly Hills during the week, then go home to Crenshaw on weekends, creating a more complex fish-out-of-water story, in which they show the ups and downs of both worlds.

My love for Funke Akindele really knows no bound since the ‘Jenifa’s diary’ has found its way to our screen,tabs,phones and laptops giving us reasons to forget Nigeria’s economic recession while it last. And yes! The mimics too, its trending.

But beyond the comedy is a bundle of life lessons. The theme song about Jenifa as a go-getter and her willingness to be at her best, of course beyond the gender borders,financial or social disability is a reason to succeed. Be your best overcome hurdles, set a path to tread for younger women and let your success be a force to motivate other women.

Woman! Thou art loosed! How many times you have failed isn’t an excuse not to try again. Always see a reason to succeed amidst pointers of failure.Be your own Jenifa! Make mistakes,learn from them and set the records straight for good.

And Kudos to Funke Akindele, you’ve done well ma’am.


With Love As Usual,


Are you bothered about women that has broken your desired record? Not to worry, do your best and you will shine as you and not them. Believe in yourself and Success will be your companion.