#019: One Lionhearted Babe

  • One Lionhearted Babe

Netflix has acquired world-wide rights to Lionheart, comedy-drama movie directed by Nigerian actress and superstar, Genevieve Nnaji. Lionheart debuted at 2018 Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) earlier this month, and is the first Netflix original movie out of Nollywood. 

With a cast of Nollywood heavyweights like Pete Edochie and Nkem Owoh, the movie is bound to outperform in streams. Both the terms of the deal and the exact Netflix streaming date are yet to be announced. As a bonafide (and unashamed) Nollywood consumer, I particularly love contemporary blogs and pages like nolly.babes that celebrate the women of classic Nollywood – Genevieve of course is the top babe.

Watch the Lionheart trailer here

Read for:  “If we have to fight this war, we have to fight it together, unless we want to lose.”



  • Delicious Development!

The Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Soybean Research (SIL) is constantly seeking innovative ways to include soy into local Mozambican cuisine to improve the desirability and profitability of the crop in Mozambique. What better way than through cookbooks? 

Nina Furstenau, Soybean Innovation Lab (SIL) researcher, worked with local women in Rotanda (Mozambique) to develop an easily understandable cookbook, titled Tasty Mozambique!, which centers on the inclusion of soy into local Mozambican dishes. In the book, the local women discuss each dish, its importance to their culture and nourishment, and provide pictorial instructions on how to make each dish. Delicious!

Read for“[Emilia's] favorite food is sadza, made with corn the traditional way with freshly pounded corn flour. When asked what she thought about substituting one cup soy flour to three cups corn flour in the sadza to add protein to the staple, Emilia tips her head, intrigued. The soy biscuits called Spare Change that they make in Sussundenga, she says, would be good to know how to make, some for her family and some to sell"



  • A Very Confused President

President Magufuli of Tanzania has a very strange obsession with pregnancy - and its prevention. His most recent public gaffe (of which there are several) is declaring that birth control users are lazy because they do not want to work hard and feed a large family. If you're wondering the exact problem with not wanting a big family in one of the poorest countries on Earth (or in any country on Earth, to be fair)... you are amongst the sensible.

The president's line of thinking would perhaps not be so odd, if he had not previously publicly stated that schoolgirls who got pregnant would be banned from public schools and not allowed to return. There was no punishment stated for those who got the girls pregnant; also no comments on the benefits of birth control in these scenarios. The president's rhetoric is not only incredibly dangerous and unfair, but also contradictory. Which one is it Mr President - should people use birth control or not? 

Activists in Tanzania don't find this as amusing as I am forcing myself to - and have hit back against the president's comments. Although Tanzania ratified the Maputo Protocol, access to birth control and reproductive health services are still limited.

Read for“You people of Meatu keep livestock. You are good farmers. You can feed your children. Why would you opt for birth control? These are my views, but I don’t see any need for birth control in Tanzania”



  • Rafiki Gets A Chance

The Kenyan government have lifted the ban on Rafiki, a lesbian romance movie directed by Wanuri Kahiu. Rafiki was the first Kenyan movie to ever be premiered at Cannes Film Festival. The movie was directed by a woman (Waniru Kahiu) and adapted from Jambula Tree, a short story by Ugandan writer, Monica Arac de Nyeko. Kenya had banned the movie for "moral subversiveness", thus preventing it from being considered in the 2019 Oscars, as the film had to be released in Kenya for official consideration.

After a court case, the ban against Rafiki has been temporarily lifted in Kenya, finally making it eligible for entry to the Best Foreign Language film in 2019 Academy Awards.
Read for“The court ruling delighted the filmmakers but angered the Kenya Film Classification Board, which banned the movie in April on the grounds that it promotes homosexuality, which is a criminal offence under a colonial-era law.”


  • Bimpe Onakoya for NYFW

This feel-good piece from Refinery29 covers the rise and rise of Bimpe Onakoya, a Nigerian makeup artist. This year, Bimpe was the first Nigerian makeup artist to lead a show at New York Fashion Week, heading up backstage makeup for LaQuan Smith. In the Nigerian makeup and fashion scene, Bimpe is renowned - having done seemingly everything from weddings to Nigeria Fashion Week. I love to see her getting her roses on an even bigger stage (or should I say runway)!

Read for"People used to ask me, 'Apart from makeup, what else do you do?' And I would respond, 'Makeup.' Then, they'd ask me if it pays the bills" 




Nneoma Nwankwo