'Iwaju' New Disney Animation:Kugali New Series Premieres in Lagos 2 - Nollywire

‘IWÁJÚ:’ Disney Animation/Kugali New Series World Premiere

'Iwájú' Series Set to Debut Across Africa on Disney Channel This April

LAGOS, Nigeria. Last night marked the world premiere of Walt Disney Animation Studios and Pan-African entertainment company Kugali’s highly anticipated series ‘Iwájú’ in Lagos, Nigeria.

The premiere took place at the Filmhouse Cinemas IMAX Lekki, just ahead of today’s launch on Disney+ of all six episodes. Notable attendees included the director, Olufikayo Ziki Adeola, production designer Hamid Ibrahim, cultural consultant Tolu Olowofoyeku, and music composer Ré Olunuga.

The event also saw the presence of special industry guests and celebrities, along with the voice cast members, including Ireti Doyle, Chioma ‘Chigul’ Omeruah, Kehinde Bankole, Bisola Aiyeola, Femi Branch, Simisola Gbadamosi, Toyin Oshinaike, and Obi Maduegbuna.

‘Iwájú’ unfolds in futuristic Lagos, Nigeria, and narrates the captivating coming-of-age tale of Tola (voiced by Simisola Gbadamosi), a young girl from the affluent island, and her best friend Kole (voiced by Siji Soetan), a self-taught tech expert. Together, they unravel the secrets and dangers hidden within their contrasting worlds.

The Kugali filmmakers deliver a unique journey into the world of ‘Iwájú,’ brimming with distinctive visual elements and technological advancements inspired by the spirit of Lagos. Produced by Disney Animation’s Christina Chen and featuring a screenplay by Adeola and Halima Hudson, ‘Iwájú’ also boasts the voices of Dayo Okeniyi, Shaffy Bello, and Weruche Opia.

Series Distribution Across Africa

‘Iwájú’ is scheduled to air across Africa on Disney Channel, available on the DStv platform (Channel 303), starting this April and May. This distribution strategy ensures that audiences throughout the continent can enjoy the series, especially in territories where Disney+ is not accessible. Director Olufikayo Ziki Adeola shared, “We crafted ‘Iwájú’ as a love letter to Lagos, Nigeria, and an homage to the rich legacy of African storytelling. We’re thrilled to share this series, hoping it inspires more Africans worldwide to share their stories and shape our collective narrative.”

Soundtrack Release on Digital Platforms, March 1

The authentic African-influenced music for the series is composed by the renowned Nigerian composer Ré Olunuga, known for his work on the 2022 Disney+ original movie ‘Rise’ and the BBC film ‘Girl.’ Olunuga expressed, “In addition to Tola’s adventurous spirit, Kole’s ingenuity, and the many other fun and beautiful emotional threads explored in ‘Iwájú,’ the score is steeped in my deep love for Lagos and its multiplicitous layers.” The soundtrack, delving into themes of family, friendship, and ingenuity, will be available digitally on March 1.

“Disney Iwájú: Rising Chef” Game Available, February 28

Coinciding with the debut of the Disney+ series, an all-new game inspired by ‘Iwájú’ titled “Disney Iwájú: Rising Chef” will be available on iOS and Android starting Feb. 28. Developed by Maliyo Games in collaboration with Disney and Kugali, the game invites players to explore authentic African delicacies through a fast-paced and accessible cooking experience. Players can advance their culinary skills, become the top chef in Lagos, and take charge of the fanciest restaurant in town.

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