EbonyLife CEO Mo Abudu Writes & Directs Two Short Films About “Taboo” Subject Of Mental Health In Nigeria; Projects Selected For Cannes & Martha’s Vineyard African Film Fest

Mo Abudu, the CEO of EbonyLife Media, has stepped into the writing and directing spaces, having completed two short films – Iyawo Mi and Her Perfect Life – the former of which will screen at the Cannes Film Festival’s Short Film Corner this month. Both projects have also been selected for the Martha’s Vineyard African American Film Festival in August.

The Nigerian media mogul, who has spent the last decade building pan-African outfit EbonyLife Media into one of the most dynamic companies on the continent, will launch the two projects through her new banner Mo Abudu Films. Both films address mental health issues from a Nigerian perspective, a subject which is considered a taboo topic in the country and throughout Africa.

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Iyawo Mi is described as a heart-wrenching story of a young married man named Kunle, who lives in the impoverished downtown area of Lagos. One evening he comes home to find his wife Eniola has gone mad, hallucinating and threatening to kill everyone. The short examines how Kunle takes matters into his own hands leading to tragic consequences. Lateef Abedimeji, Bolaji Ogunmola and Segun Arinze star with Jude Chukwuka, Koye Kekere-Ekun and Blessing Obasi in supporting roles.

Her Perfect Life is the story of Onajite Johnson Ibrahim, a woman whom everyone in Lagos wants to emulate. At 39, she has achieved what most women 20 years her senior would be proud of: a flourishing career, a growing business, a loving husband, and two bright and beautiful children. But despite the picture-perfect exterior, she wants to end it all. The film features Pearl Thusi and Joseph Benjamin in leading roles, with Omowunmi Dada, Uzo Osimkpa, Mary Lazarus, and Christian Paul in supporting roles.

“It is my fervent belief that true artistic expression demands absolute freedom and it is with great pleasure that I have taken the leap of faith to direct my first two short films with the launch of Mo Abudu Films,” said Abudu. “I am thrilled and honored to have both of my short films selected to screen at the prestigious Martha’s Vineyard African American Film Festival, an important festival for Black film and Black perspective, which is also an Oscar-qualifying festival. This recognition means a lot to me as a filmmaker and as a story teller.”

She added: “I am also excited to showcase my short film Iyawo Mi at the Short Film Corner during the Cannes Film Festival, a global stage that brings together filmmakers from around the world. This is an incredible opportunity to share my vision and my stories with a wider audience, and to contribute to the vibrant and diverse landscape of world cinema.”

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