Mo Abudu, an entrepreneur with a predilection for television, launched EbonyLife TV, Africa’s first global black entertainment and lifestyle network, in 2013. Her primary goal for the channel was to make a more positive narrative around Africa.
What followed was a string of inspirational series just like the Governor, about Nigeria’s first female state governor; Desperate Housewives Africa, supported Disney’s original series; and Sons of the Caliphate, a drama about the rivalry between rich and powerful families in northern Nigeria’ and chateau & Castle, Africa’s first premium legal series among others.
In her quest to vary global perceptions about Africa, Abudu took the plunge into filmmaking with the creation of EbonyLife Films in 2014. She executive produced Fifty, directed by Biyi Bandele, produced by Tope Oshin Ogun, and starring Nse Ikpe-Etim, Ireti Doyle, Omoni Oboli, and Dakore Akande.
Fifty was Nigeria’s highest-grossing drama and no 1 film in 2015. Fifty was also the sole Nigerian film selected to screen at the 59th BFI London festival. Fifty was acquired by Netflix in 2015.
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In 2016, Abudu co-executive produced the marriage Party, directed by Kemi Adetiba and starring Adesua Etomi, Banky Wellington, Richard Mofe Damijo, Sola Sobowale, Iretiola Doyle, Alibaba Akporobome, Zainab Balogun, Beverly Naya, Somkele Iyamah, Enyinna Nwigwe, Daniella Down, and Stephen Damien.
The marriage Party premiered at The Toronto International festival in 2016 and have become the highest-grossing title of all time at the Nigerian box office. In 2017, the marriage Party was acquired by Netflix.
In 2017, Abudu co-executive produced the marriage Party 2: Destination Dubai, directed by Niyi Akinmolayan and featuring the first movie’s main cast. The sequel surpassed the first movie in terms of domestic and international revenues, making the marriage Party 2: Destination Dubai the highest-grossing Nollywood film of all time.
In 2017, Abudu executive produced The Royal Hibiscus Hotel, directed by Ishaya Bako and featuring an ensemble cast that included Zainab Balogun, Kenneth Okolie, Deyemi Okanlawon, Joke Silva, Olu Jacobs, Jide Kosoko, Rachel Oniga, Kemi Lala Akindoju, and Ini Dima-Okojie.
The Royal Hibiscus Hotel made its debut at the Toronto International festival in 2017. it had been the sole Nigerian selection and one among only three African features within the times Cinema category, which spotlights 48 of the simplest new films worldwide.
The Royal Hibiscus Hotel was recognized as a “Hidden Gem” by the Toronto International festival. In 2018, Amazon Prime licensed The Royal Hibiscus Hotel for audiences outside Africa.
In 2018, Abudu executive produced Chief Daddy, directed by Niyi Akinmolayan featuring a star-studded cast including Richard Mofe Damijo, Ajoke Silva, Dakore Akande, Funke Akindele, Kate Henshaw, Falz, Rachel Oniga, Nkem Owoh, Patience Ozokwor amongst others. Chief Daddy was the ‘Official no 1 Nollywood film of 2018’ and therefore the third-highest grossing Nigerian film. In 2019, Netflix acquired ‘Chief Daddy’ after weeks in cinemas.
Abudu executive produced the new film Oloture, a feature a few young, naive, female journalist goes undercover to show the shady business of human trafficking in Nigeria and encounters a brutal underworld.
The film was directed by Kenneth Gyang and starring Sharon Ooja, Omoni Oboli, Blossom Chukwujekwu, Omowunmi Dada, Kemi “Lala” Akindoju, Wofai Fada, Bukola Oladipupo, Pearl Okorie, Ikechukwu Onanaku, David Jones David, Sambasa Nzeribe, and Omawumi Megbele.
In 2018, Sony Pictures Television (SPT) announced that that they had concluded a three-year affect EbonyLife TV that might include co-production of The Dahomey Warriors, a series about the legendary Amazons who took on French colonialists during a 19th-century West African kingdom.
As CEO of EbonyLife Media, Abudu has made her mark through various endeavors within the corporate world, and Forbes described her as “Africa’s Most Successful Woman” while CNN said she was “Africa’s Queen of Media who conquered the continent.”
Abudu oversees all five divisions of EbonyLife Media, which incorporates EbonyLife TV, EbonyLife Films, EbonyLife ON, EbonyLife Studios, and EbonyLife Productions Limited (UK). Opening summer 2019, EbonyLife Place, a luxury entertainment resort will feature a boutique hotel, gourmet restaurant and luxury 5-screen multiplex within the heart of Victoria Island in Lagos.
Abudu is very wanted for her knowledge of the African and global creative industry. She has spoken at the Wharton School of Business, Cambridge University Judge School of Business, and Harvard University, and she or he has received many international recognitions.
She was listed in Hollywood Reporter’s 25 Most Powerful Women in Global Television in 2013 and 2017. Abudu received an Honorary Doctorate Degree (Honorius Causa) from Babcock University, Nigeria’s premier private university.
In 2018, the University of Westminster awarded Mo an academic degree of Doctor of Arts, in recognition of her outstanding services to broadcasting and enterprise in Nigeria. within the same year, Abudu was appointed a Director of the International Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, the organization liable for staging the planet famous International Emmy Awards.
She was named on The Power list 2018, an annual list of the UK’s top 100 most influential people of African and Caribbean heritage. Abudu was nominated to function a member of the Advisory Group on Technology and Creatively for Nigeria in 2018 also.
Abudu is about to be awarded the 2019 Médailles d’Honneur in Cannes at the Marche International des Programmes de Television (MIPTV). She is one among the 4 recipients of the award, which she is going to receive in April 2019. Abudu is represented by the Creative Artists Agency (CAA).
Abudu began her career within the UK as a recruitment consultant in 1987 and went on to figure for the Starform Group and ExxonMobil (Nigeria) as head of Human Resources and Training. She left in 2000 to determine Vic Lawrence & Associates Limited, a specialist human resources development company. While running VLA, Abudu developed an executive training center at the Protea Hotel in Oakwood Park, Lagos.
Abudu attended Ridgeway School, Mid Kent College, and West Kent College. She earned her MA in Human Resources Development from the University of Westminster in London. Abudu has two children: a daughter Temidayo, who may be a film and television producer, and a son Adekoyejo, who may be a budding art consultant.
Mo Abudu Trivia Issues:
- Her early years were spent mainly within the UK, where she was born and raised. She worked her way through college, attending the Ridgeway School, Mid Kent College and West Kent College.
- She was recognized by Forbes magazine because the ‘first African woman to launch a pan-African TV channel’, also as by CNN, who mentioned her as ‘Africa’s Queen of Media who conquered the continent’.
- Mo’s family roots are in Ondo Town, within the south-west of Nigeria. She is that the eldest of three sisters. Mo lost her father at the age of 11. She has two children – daughter Temidayo and son Adekoyejo.
- She went on to receive an MA in Human Resources Development from the University of Westminster in London. She was conferred with an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters (Honoris Causa) by Babcock University in 2014.
- At age 19, she was selected to be the brand ambassador for AVON Cosmetics for the African market.
Mo Abudu‘s Personal Quotes:
- If you’ll think it, you’ll do it!
- Never stop dreaming; it is your one right nobody can deduct, wherever you’re.
- Always remember that folks judge you supported their own standards, so always look carefully at those judging you.
- Never underestimate your competitors. Keep being the benchmark they’re trying to beat.
- Share your recipe of success with others; we all have our unique blueprint.
- If your dreams don’t scare you, they’re not large enough