Kenya’s First Netflix Original series
Star-studded Kenya’s first Netflix Original series, Country Queen, premiered on Friday to great audience reviews.
County Queen’s story revolves around the life of Akisa, played by Melissa Kiplagat, A Nairobi event planner who returns to her village after 10 years, to confront her past — and an unscrupulous mining company that threatens to destroy her home.
The story setting is in rural Eastern Kenya, Ukambani and it was refreshing to see the film embrace the diversity of Kenya and move away from the usual central Kenya setting.
Netflix, the world’s largest streaming video service, in 2019 announced plans to commission original shows from Africa. In the same year, the company hired Kenya’s Writer and producer Dorothy Ghettuba, as its manager for International Originals.
The Boy who Harnessed the Wind, based in Malawi, but featuring Kenyan actors, including the star actor Maxwell Simba, who plays William, is among the African films commissioned by Netflix.
Netflix also bought Nollywood’s movie, Lionheart, by Genevieve Nnaji in September 2018.
In May this year, Netflix also signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Ministry of ICT that will see the platform inject Ksh 33 million to enhance skill capacity in Kenya’s TV and film industry, as part of its investment in local content.
Netflix, the world’s largest streaming video service, will sponsor Kenyans for film and TV-focused courses in local colleges and universities abroad through a Sh33 million fund. The platform will also help produce three Kenyan movies, which are reportedly already in different stages of production while their licensed local titles are being reviewed by Netflix.
Country Queen Reviews
Kirigo Euna: Country queen is such an amazing series. Great writing, excellent casting. Absolutely love the opening sequence and the montage track is unforgettable. A captivating story, of what many African countries are going through, foreigners exploit a country with the help of few corrupt government leaders at the expense of its citizens. Great performance by Kenya’s best Nia Githinji Melvin Alusa Joel Otukho Carolyne Midimo Nini Wacera Kamau Wandung’u Jacquey ‘Wilbroda’ Nyaminde Raymond Ofula Isaya Evans Charlie Karumi and the entire cast. I Binge watched the entire series in one sitting. Great job Vincent Mbaya .NetflixLooking forward to new episodes.
Kipchumba Kipwambok:Well, it looks like we are finally showcasing our amazing talents in acting and scriptwriting on Netflix . Country Queen is well written and very informative series out of Kenya yet.
Great to see women and especially girl child taking their rightful place in family inheritance and decision-making. Unfortunately, child labour is thriving in our country. I hope this amazing work will shade light on these human rights abuses.
Worth your time for sure.
Bob Mulei: Manzee Country Queen is super lit. You have to check it out.
Netflix did a great job in their very first Kenyan series, I love it and can’t wait for more
Usikose kuwatch hata nikama hautaamini umeshootiwa hapa ukambani. #KenyaIsQueen
Josephine Cherotich: I enjoyed our own series, made in Kenya
Netflix to Inject Sh33 Million in Kenya’s Film Industry