Walt Disney Animation Studios and the Pan-African British-based entertainment company Kugali Media is set to debut their first Nigerian animated series “Iwaju”.
Ziki Nelson, the creator of the story, announced that the series will debut on a yet-to-be-announced date in Lagos.
“Iwaju”, which means “future” is set in a futuristic version of Lagos, Nigeria and follows two kids, Tola and Kole, who grow up on opposite sides of a city sharply divided by the haves and have-nots.
Their friendship is tested by Bode, a tech pioneer whose futuristic advances hide a criminal underworld he runs with an iron fist.
A sneak preview of the series shows an Afrofuturist tale that Nelson says will have plenty of colour and action, and like so many Disney tales, there’s an animal companion along for the ride in the form of a robotic salamander named Otin.
But the series also tackles social theme facing Lagos in real-life, most notably the widening inequality facing its residents.
According to reports, Iwájú will explore themes of inequality and class divide, which director and Kugali co-founder Ziki Nelson described as “the everyday reality of life in Nigeria and other parts of the world”.
It will also explore how those issues affect everyday society, as well as “challenging the status quo”.
Nelson also described the show as about “inspiration, or aspiration and desire, to try and engineer society for living in a more positive way”.