My 5 Favourite Nigerian Animation Shorts

As long as I can remember I've always wanted to make an animated short film, and maybe after, a feature film. I recall watching Final Fantasy: Advent Children and totally losing it, years later after working with various studios ( In other words, a group of dudes who come together and decide to make something) my respect for Nigerian animators who produce content through thick and thin has grown. Below is a list of my favorite animation shorts created by Nigerian individuals considering the time and resources used to produce most of these shorts.

P.S Kindly note that this is a personal list and there's some bias to it :-)

5. EXO

E.X.O is a superhero story about redemption set in futuristic 2025 Africa. This short Animation was made to create awareness of the then launched comic book franchise and has so far garnered alot of attention from various people around the world. E.X.O as a comic incorporates a bit of everything Nigerian into it, from style, fashion and humor to more intricate themes that reflect the situation of the country and world around it.

4. Area (Series)

Coming with extremely funny, quirky and unconventional humor that showcases the everyday lives of the average Nigerian, the Area series has been hailed as the South park of Nigeria. It's simple art and animation style serves not as a deterrent but as a vehicle to push our Nigerian humor further. Using Nintendo Wii in the game console war as an analogy, Area creates it's own spot a midst other competing Nigerian animations. While others may seek a thrilling deep story or try to push art to another level, Area has one goal and it achieves it in every episode. It makes you laugh out loud. Always.

3. The Sim

Prior to the release of The Sim, I came across several concept art and coming soon promos (like we all do) on social media. Of course I ignored any possibilities of this wonderful animation coming out until it was released on November 2014. The Sim tells the story of a young Girl caught in a computer simulation who must fight her way through to survive.

This minimalist 3d animation finds its strength in its amazing camera work and fight sequences. Its so hard to be convinced that the bulk of work, including modelling texturing, lighting, Animation and rendering where done by a single person. If there is one way to produce a kick-ass animation without depending on fancy computers with good processing power, this sure is.

2. Iwa

Iwa is a student short film created by comic artist and animator Kenneth Coker. The short, as abstract and ambiguous as its title (I still don't have one clear definition of the yoruba word) somewhat narrates the story of creation in a stylistic way. Iwa stands as a piece of art itself as every frame could pass as an A abstract artwork. The dark and cool color palette accompanied by the gritty and/or cosmic like texture creates a feel similar to most of Kenneth's comic work such as Light Sweet Crude and Jupiter Jonah. Iwa was created 9 years ago before most of us even dreamed of picking up a wacom pen, still this animation piece stands strong in its old age as one of those few digital works that we can be proud of.

1. Wale and Ovie

Face it! We Nigerians love to have a good laugh regardless of our sociopolitical and economic situation. Orange studios takes cognizance of that and the fact that dance is a major part of the Nigerian culture.

In a time where everyone is trying to create some type of deep, intricate 'game of thrones' kind of plot, people seem to forget that the simpler things could be as interesting to, and this short dance animation reminds us of that. Fuel prices might be high and the Naira might be fluctuating up and down like a twerking behind on vine, but still in the midst of all this, no true Nigerian turns down a good dance song.


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