There’s so much background to the indie drama Nigerian Prince, but here’s what you need to know: the movie is the directorial debut from Faraday Okoro, the Nigerian-American filmmaker who received a $1 million grant from AT&T’s Untold Stories program to make the film. Making its premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival earlier this year, Nigerian Prince is the visual equivalent to Tricia Nwaubani’s erstwhile novel I Do Not Come To You By Chance.
The international hype around Nigerian Prince has yet to infiltrate the mainstream, in part because there wasn’t a trailer. Now Vertical Entertainment, the American film company distributing the movie, recently released one yesterday and it looks intriguing in a way that induces anticipation. Internet scamming or 419 scams is an ecosphere that has merged with our national identity, and Okoro’s Nigerian Prince draws from it like a lifeblood.
“Anyone can fall for scams…” Chinaza Uche as Pius says to Antonio J Bell’s Eze. Both men are cousins. After Eze’s mothers sends him to Nigeria against his will, Eze looks like a fish out of water but he’s soon anchored by the enterprising Pius. Eze is set on going back to Nigeria that all he wants is a return ticket to America. Together with Pius, they scam unsuspecting foreigners in order to raise the money for Eze’s travel expense. But the trailer shows things getting a little ugly, or maybe very ugly, we really can’t tell.
Everything is set up perfectly to go against the scamming duo, because there’s a scene that shows Pius in the custody of the police. Executive produced by Spike Lee and Sam Pollard, and with screenplay by Andrew Long, Nigerian Prince also stars Bimbo Manuel, Tina Mba, Craig Scott, Dean Cameron and others. Nigerian Prince will be released in select American theaters and will be available across all AT&T video platforms on October 19, including DirectTV and DirectTV Now.
When Bernard Dayo isn’t writing about pop culture, he’s watching horror movies, anime and trying to pretend his addiction to Netflix isn’t a serious condition.