ROK, the award-winning Nigerian film studio and entertainment brand, will launch across Africa on the DStv platform on 1 November 2016, on channel 168. The Lagos-based film studio, renowned for its original TV series and Nollywood movies, will join the DStv family, bringing original content to 52 countries, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
The new channel will launch with ROK Studios’ exclusively-produced content, including Festac Town, Banks Chronicles and Bloodline. ROK will be available to DStv Premium, DStv Compact Plus and DStv Compact customers. Some of the ROK content will also be available on the DStv Catch-Up service.
Nigerian cinema, known colloquially as Nollywood, is the second largest film industry in the world, in terms of production output. In its short history, ROK has become one of the industry’s most prolific producers of new, original content, with arguably Africa’s most extensive Nollywood catalogue of 12 TV series and more than 150 movies.
The new, exclusively Nollywood channel will be fully programmed, produced and developed in-house, by ROK’s Lagos-based team. Mary Njoku, award-winning Nollywood actress and film producer who has spent over 12 years at the heart of Nigerian filmmaking, will head the channel, which will also be supported by IROKO, the VC-backed African technology and entertainment broadcaster and content distributor.
Speaking on the launch, ROK CEO Mary Njoku says: “Joining the DStv family is the next step in ROK’s evolution as Nollywood’s leading film production house and brand. Broadcasting our original content to millions of movie fans across the African continent, on a platform as far-reaching and illustrious as DStv, is an exhilarating prospect.
“What lies beneath every ROK production, the ROK brand, be it movies or TV series, is our fanatical love of African storytelling; we want to relate amazing African stories that our fans can recognise, be swept away by and be entertained with. We work with Nigeria’s most exceptional talent, in front of and behind the camera, and we continue to push the boundaries in terms of production values. This has given us the edge, in our short history, and has helped us build a fanbase around the world. ROK on DStv allows us to bring ROK to every corner of the continent and connect viewers with content they love”.
“One of the cornerstones of our customer promise is to deliver content that our customers love and enjoy, and that is why we’re excited to introduce ROK which will boost DStv’s local content offering and showcase even more African stories made in Africa, for us Africans,” says the managing director of MultiChoice Nigeria, John Ugbe. “This will ensure that our offering keeps the art of storytelling alive on the continent which, will in turn help to grow Africa’s creative industries like Nollywood into vibrant, economic powerhouses.”
Since its launch in 2013, ROK Studios has produced some of Nollywood’s most talked about originals, including Festac Town, Single Ladies, Stalemate, Banks Chronicles and Bloodline. The channel launches with these blockbuster titles, and going forward, ROK viewers on DStv will be the first to watch new and exclusive homegrown ROK content, before it goes anywhere else.
Nollywood is the world’s second largest film industry in terms of output, producing approximately 50 films a week and employs over one million people in Nigeria, and contributes 1.42 per cent of Nigeria’s GDP. Prominent themes in Nollywood films include family, religion, love and betrayal.