Nollywood or Hollywood, Who Won the Battle in February as Moviegoers Spent N412m in Nigerian Cinemas


Movie theatre attendance in Nigerian cinemas is booming. This has been evident in recent stats and the February cinema stats by the Cinema Exhibitors Association of Nigeria (CEAN) is no different. Moviegoers in Nigeria spent N412,048,699 at cinemas in the month of February.

Although this is a drop from the N551.9 million (N551,996,781‬) spent in theatres all over the country in January, it’s a massive improvement year-on-year. In February 2019, Nigerians spent only N267 million at cinemas, but the 2020 stat show 35.25% increase from 2019.

This increase indicates that Nigerians are beginning to appreciate cinemas more. 360,928 persons visited Nigerian cinemas to watch the top 20 movies in February 2020 compared to the over 200,000 who did in February 2019.

This increase was not unexpected though. As we predicted, February which is associated with love, saw many people stroll to the cinemas to have a delightful time with their loved ones.

This is evident in the 3rd week grossing over N109m, which was the highest weekly grossing in the month. Over the Valentine weekend (February 14 – 16), Nigerian cinemas raked in over N80.2m as attendance also surged.

Other weeks also had good entries, with cinema operators making over N80m each week.

Even the last weekend of the month (February 28 – March 1), saw cinema operators rake in N46.5m from moviegoers.

Cinema Movies: Nollywood or Hollywood, which is currently King?

Amidst the whole rise in Cinema attendance and earnings, one question continues to linger in the hearts of many – which movies do Nigerian moviegoers view the most?

The battle, of course, has always been between the locally produced movies (Nollywood) and its Hollywood counterparts. Other movie industries like Gollywood and Bollywood have always tried but never pulled the waves in the country’s cinemas as much as the latter.

While the belief that Nigerians prefer foreign movies to local ones is true, the stats, however, shows that the difference isn’t much. And contrary to popular opinion, Nigerians actually do watch Nollywood movies.

In February 2020, cinema operators made N217m from Hollywood movie attendance. While for Nollywood, they made N168m. Together, they accounted for about 94% of the total grossing in February.

Other movie industries, Gollywood, Bollywood etc, accounted for just N25m of the earnings.

Hollywood movie, Bad Boys For Life, which was the highest watched movie in February, raked in N77m. And since its release in January, the movie has grossed N166m.

Image result for bad boys for life movie
Will Smith and Martin Lawrence in the movie, Bad Boys for Life.

Nollywood’s Sugar Rush, despite being released in December 2019, still finds itself in the top 4 films in the country. Since its release, the movie has made N275m in Nigerian cinemas.

Nollywood or Hollywood? Who Won the Battle in February as Moviegoers Spent N412m in Nigerian Cinemas
The Jade Osiberu movie, Sugar Rush, has been doing well in Nigerian cinemas.

Of recent, the gap between Hollywood movies and Nollywood movies are beginning to close up as more Nollywood movies feature prominently on the top 20 movies list.

Thus while it is true that Nigerians still watch more Hollywood movies, it is also to be emphasised that Nigerians also watch Nollywood movies well – should it meet their criteria for a good movie.

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