Nollywood actress Toyin Abraham revealed on Tuesday that piracy of her latest movie, ‘Malaika,’ has taken a toll on her mental health, leading to panic attacks and hospitalization. The actress, known for her contributions to the Nigerian film industry, spoke with journalists in Lagos after the police apprehended five suspects involved in the alleged piracy of her movie.
The Federal Criminal Investigation Department (FCID) in Lagos arrested the suspects, including two women, for conspiracy, infringement of intellectual property, piracy, and cyber-related crimes related to the unlawful distribution of ‘Malaika’ on cyberspace.
Toyin Abraham and Seun Olayemi, the co-producer of ‘Malaika,’ lodged a criminal complaint, stating that the movie, initially released for cinema viewing on December 21, 2023, was criminally pirated. The suspects had reportedly uploaded the movie to their website, creating a streaming web link for global viewers.
The actress, who spent about N500 million on the project, commended the police for taking action against piracy, emphasizing her commitment to fighting against those infringing on artists’ works. Abraham expressed her gratitude to AIG Idowu Owohunwa, in charge of FCID Alagbon, for collaborating with the movie industry and the Nigerian Copyright Commission to combat piracy.
In a separate press briefing, Toyin Abraham shared her distressing experience upon discovering the unauthorized dissemination of “Malaika” on Telegram channels. The multimillion-naira project, anticipated to be a career milestone, faced unauthorized distribution across social media platforms, leaving the filmmaker emotionally devastated. Abraham, visibly distressed, revealed days of uncontrollable tears, panic attacks, and hospitalization, emphasizing the financial and creative toll of piracy on her and the film’s entire team.