Nigerian filmmaker and producer Funke Akindele has once again made history with her latest movie project, “A Tribe Called Judah” – Just 20 days after its release in cinemas, the movie has grossed over N1 billion in ticket sales making it the fastest Nollywood movie to record this feat. It has also become the highest-grossing Nollywood movie of all time and has made the Nigerian filmmaker the highest-grossing Nollywood director of all time. 

This action-packed comedy features an impressive ensemble cast, including Funke Akindele, Timini Egbuson, Jidekene Achufusi, Uzee Usman, Tobi Makinde, and Olumide Oworu. The storyline follows a family embarking on a heist to rob a luxury furniture store, only to unexpectedly encounter armed robbers already inside the mall.

Distributed nationwide by FilmOne Entertainment, this cinematic spectacle began its theatrical run on December 15, 2023, surpassing the previous record ticket numbers set by films like Sugar Rush and King. It achieved an impressive feat with 231,053 admissions and an astounding N1.02 billion in gross earnings, solidifying its place as a blockbuster success. 

Nigerian Box Office Timeline of A Tribe Called Judah

Analyzing the box office figures, according to updates shared by the Nigerian box office on X, the financial performance of “A Tribe Called Judah” unfolds as follows:

  • Notably, within a brief three-week period, the film achieved a remarkable milestone, surpassing the admission records set by blockbuster hits like Sugar Rush (229,060) and King of Boys (220,565).
  • In its initial fifteen days, concluding on December 30, the movie had already secured an impressive N780 million, maintaining an exceptional daily gross ranging from N55 million to N75 million during the festive season. It swiftly recorded approximately N60 million within the first 48 hours of its release.
  • Within just two weeks, the earnings had reached N613 million, and more recently, it surged to N854 million. By January 3, the film experienced further growth, grossing an impressive N997 million in ticket sales before ultimately crossing the remarkable milestone of over N1 billion.
Cinematic Triumph and Industry Impact

Not a stranger to breaking Nollywood records, Funke Akindele has previously achieved record breaking numbers with films like “Omo Ghetto: The Saga” grossing N636 million in 2020, and “Battle on Buka Street” at N668 million in 2022. In the realm of Nollywood’s milestones, “A Tribe of Judah” outperforms previous record holders, showcasing the film’s exceptional appeal to audiences and its ability to captivate the market. The billion-naira record, previously held by Hollywood’s “Black Panther 2” at N1.04 billion, marks a significant milestone for the Nigerian movie industry

Speaking on the movie project, Akindele noted that there’s often a stigmatisation surrounding women who have children out of wedlock as they get labelled with unprintable names with the assumption that their children will amount to nothing.  “The film also sheds some focus on rebellious children. When they start out being rebellious, their families tend to give up on them. However, it is important to look for something special in your children; help them nurture their talents, and they will become great with it.” She added that the movie will resonate with people from all walks of life, stating that she made sure ‘everybody was represented in it’

Comparisons with other successful Nollywood releases highlight the unprecedented nature of Funke Akindele’s achievement, solidifying her status as a trailblazing filmmaker. The significance of the film’s resounding success extends beyond individual accolades, signifying a new era in Nollywood where box office records are shattered and industry standards are redefined. “A Tribe Called Judah” not only establishes itself as a cultural phenomenon but also contributes to the ongoing growth and evolution of the Nigerian film industry, asserting its dominance on both national and global stages. The film’s accomplishment resonates as a testament to the potential and impact of Nollywood in the larger cinematic landscape. 

Industry Impact

The monumental success of Funke Akindele’s “A Tribe Called Judah” goes beyond individual accolades, significantly influencing Nollywood’s global standing. The film’s extraordinary box office performance serves as a powerful statement, showcasing the commercial viability and creative prowess of Nigerian cinema on an international scale. This success contributes to enhancing the reputation of Nollywood as a dynamic and influential player in the global film industry. 

In a statement on the box office record achieved by A Tribe Called Judah, the Group CEO of Filmhouse Group, Kene Okwuosa said, “We are witnessing a golden era for Nigerian cinema, and Funke Akindele’s “A Tribe Called Judah” reaching the 1 billion Naira mark is evidence that despite the stiff competition from international streaming platforms, our local content continues to thrive, engaging audiences on a grand scale.”

The impact on future projects and filmmakers within the industry is substantial. “A Tribe Called Judah” not only sets a new benchmark for box office success but also establishes a precedent for ambitious storytelling and production quality. The film’s triumph inspires a new wave of creativity and encourages filmmakers to aim for greater heights in their cinematic endeavors. As a result, this success is likely to usher in a period of increased investment, innovation, and artistic exploration within the Nollywood landscape

Funke Akindele’s contribution to the industry has garnered widespread recognition and accolades. Her achievement as the highest-grossing Nollywood director of all time highlights her as a trailblazer and visionary within the film community. This recognition not only celebrates her individual accomplishment but also elevates her as a symbol of inspiration for aspiring filmmakers, reinforcing the belief in the limitless potential of Nigerian cinema on the global stage.

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