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How a comment earned Ugandan Animator a big deal with Disney

In December last year 2020, American animation company Disney announced it was partnering with an African story telling company Kugali to produce an animated science fiction series ‘Iwaju’.

This came after one of the co-founders of Kugali, a Ugandan Animator Hamid Ibrahim made a pledge to the BBC in an interview that his team's work was “going to kick Disney's ass”.

While appearing on RX Radio on the Groove with Crystal Show on Tuesday evening, Hamid revealed that although the comment seemed like a self-praising egotistical statement, it certainly caught Disney's attention who contacted them for a collaboration.

"I am proud to say that an African company like ours is the first to step in this big door," he said.

Iwaju will be a long-form series "steeped in science fiction" based in the futuristic Lagos Nigeria.

Hamid, along with two Nigerian friends Ziki Nelson and Tolu Olowofoyeku created the company Kugali to tell stories inspired by African culture using comic books, art and augmented reality.

"Africa is known for arriving late for everything. This time, we are the first to collaborate with Disney and I hope that this opportunity will open doors for other African producers," Hamid said in a chart with Crystal Newman on the Groove Cafe hour.

The Groove with Crystal show runs every day on RX Radio from 3pm to 7pm hosted by Chrystal Newman. The show has a segment, 'Groove Cafe' that gives an opportunity for inspiring listeners to share their stories.

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