How Basketmouth Landed Showmax’s First Original Comedy

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How Basketmouth Landed Showmax’s First Original Comedy

Basketmouth has become a household name in Nigeria and his name is synonymous with comedy in the country. This is why when it was announced that he has landed Showmax’s first original comedy series, Ghana Jollof, it received widespread acceptance with many on social media expressing their desire to see it as soon as it was released. This is not surprising because Basketmouth has already earned that pedigree as Nigeria’s most creative and versatile comedian.

Basketmouth is not someone that does things in halves; he has consistently over the years shown his artistic dexterity in movie, music and comedy shows. Born Bright Okpocha on September 14 1978 in Lagos state, Basketmouth attended primary and secondary school in Lagos before moving to Benin where he studied Sociology and Anthropology at the University of Benin.

He began his artistic sojourn in 1991 as a drummer. Three years later, he switched to rap with the formation of a group named “Da Psychophats”.  group was dissolved and he formed another one named “Da Oddz” with his brother, Godwin.

Basketmouth ultimately dropped his rap ambition and focused on his comedy rising to become Nigeria’s most influential and notable comedian. 

He is one of the few Nigerian comedians to have international comedy tours. He has sold out Indigo at The O2 many times since 2010 and went on to sell out the Eventim Apollo Hammersmith. He became the only Nigerian comedian to have sold out the SSE Arena, Wembley in 2017.

As a testament to his brilliance, Basketmouth won the National Comedy Award and the awards for Best Stand-up Comedian of the Year in 2005 and 2006. 

He also hosted the MTV Base Big Friday show from 2012 to 2017. He started producing his award-winning TV series, “My Flatmates” in 2013. In 2014, he headlined his own show, ‘Just For Laughs’ on Comedy Central and has continued to do skits and a few other appearances on the channel since then.

In December 2020, Basketmouth began his comedy web series titled “Papa Benji”. 

Ghana Jollof might soon best be described as Baskemouth’s biggest project and perhaps the most innovative. Interested participants were asked to post a two-minute video on Instagram for an audition. 

The comedy series, Ghana Jollof,  which was filmed in Lagos and Accra stars Basketmouth, who also doubles as Executive Producer, comedian/actor Buchi, AMVCA-winning comedian, Funnybone, actor Uzor Arukwe, who starred as the dreaded crime boss, Knight, in Sugar Rush and popular YouTuber, Akah Nnani.

Joselyn Dumas, a nominee for the Africa Movie Academy Award (AMAA), heartthrobs Mawuli Gavor and James Gardiner bring in the Ghanaian touch to the series alongside the ‘Queen of Ghana comedy’, Jacinta Ocansey, popular reality star Portia Freelove, model and actress Brihanna Kinte, veteran actor Jackson Albert Davies, actress Korkor Oyeba Mensah, and multiple-award-winning comedian/actor, Kalybos. 

Ghana Jollof‘s humour lies in relatable everyday events peculiar to the Nigerian and Ghanaian cultures. It adopts a creative style where the actors address the viewers by providing a personal commentary on events in the series. From the students in UNILAG trying to size each other up on the first day in the hostel to the young lady with multiple boyfriends, Basketmouth has truly brought his A-game to the screen combining his expertise as a master comedian with his dexterity as a producer. The series is truly worth its hype.

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