Cover

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Title page, Copyright, Dedication

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Contents

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Preface and Acknowledgments

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pp. xi-xxii

Before embarking on a detailed investigation of Nollywood stardom, it is necessary to acknowledge some of the historical, political, and cultural reasons for the absence of conventionally defined film stars from the firmament of classical African cinema. If one of Nollywood’s outstanding contributions...

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A Note on Orthography and Taxonomy

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pp. xxv-xxvii

In this book, which traces the development of Nollywood stardom across a variety of platforms, I employ full diacritics in order to identify Yorùbá words and phrases according to standard Yorùbá orthography. That these diacritics rarely appear in Nollywood promotional materials—or even onscreen...

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Introduction: Global Stars in Nigeria’s Postindependence Firmament—From Ossie Davis to Doctor Bello

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pp. 1-28

Shot in Nigeria and New York, and featuring African and American performers, the Nollywood-Hollywood coproduction Doctor Bello (Tony Abulu, 2012) had its world premiere at the Kennedy Center in Washington, where the question of stardom’s transnational reach inspired a series...

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1. From Yorùbá to YouTube: Studying Nollywood’s Star System

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pp. 29-67

When Nollywood star Omotola Jalade-Ekeinde was shooting the VH1 drama series Hit the Floor in February, 2013, she started live-tweeting from the set, describing the Paramount lot and calling her colleague Kimberly Elise “a beautiful Method actor.” That tweet in particular seemed to say so...

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2. Glittering Video: Format, Fashion, and the Materiality of Nollywood Stardom

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pp. 68-115

There is a moment on Omotola Jalade-Ekeinde’s reality television series, Omotola: The Real Me, when the Nollywood star addresses the intense public backlash against the dress that she wore to the 2011 Grammy Awards in Los Angeles. Making history as the first Nollywood star to grace the Grammy...

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3. A Mobile Glow: Nollywood Stardom and Corporate Globalism

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pp. 116-163

A woman proudly hoists a BlackBerry in what appears to be a promo for the phone but is in fact a poster for a film. In another image, the same woman is holding a similar phone, only this time the ad has nothing to do with a movie. It is a flyer for a particular cell-phone service plan, and it first appeared...

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4. When Stars Collide: Lady Gaga and the Pirating of a Globalized Persona

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pp. 164-211

Despite Tonto Dikeh’s boastful claims of complete autonomy, star-making remains a collaborative process. So, of course, do attempts to dramatize individual star personae. In 2011, several of the talents behind the BlackBerry Babes trilogy reunited for a project called Lady Gaga.1 As he had done with...

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5. Nollywood’s Progeny: Stardom and the Politics of Youth Empowerment

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pp. 212-249

Once Oge Okoye had achieved star status, producers worked to solidify her specific star qualities by casting her in a series of similarly themed films. That, of course, is partly how Nollywood’s star system functions—through a process of conscious accretion. Indeed, film roles tend to multiply in...

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6. Professionalizing Childhood: Nollywood and the New Youth Transnationalism

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pp. 250-293

It would be difficult to overstate the paradoxical dilemmas facing African child performers, who tend to inspire hope while evoking fear. Over the past several years, I have encountered numerous Nollywood fans who criticize the industry for, in their eyes, failing to facilitate child stardom, and...

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Afterword: Honoring Nollywood Stars

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pp. 294-300

Now that Nollywood has succeeded in supplying a long roster of African movie stars, it is worth reflecting upon those stars’ semiotic effects. That the industry’s onscreen talents are globally famous is not arguable; Omotola Jalade-Ekeinde’s reality series receives approximately 150 million...

Notes

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pp. 301-312

Bibliography

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pp. 313-330

Filmography

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pp. 331-336

Index

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pp. 337-349