Comedian Oluwatosin Kupoluyi, aka Xtreme, has said humor is the ingredient that keeps people sane in Nigeria’s troubled times.
Xtreme, who made the statement in an interview with Midweek Entertainment, said that with the right support and structures in place, the Nigerian comedy industry would thrive, adding that 2023 would be a transformative year for comedians to push their art to a global audience.
He said: “You can’t tell me, we are making meaningful content that will appeal to the standards of Netflix, Amazon and other international distribution companies. We comedians are making more efforts to distribute our stand-up shows and series to international distribution companies like Netflix, Amazon.
“The Nigerian comedy industry has not achieved this recognition as the country’s top comedians are hardly known beyond national borders. Some comedians already have specials on Netflix, but we need to explore and master this platform more.
“Everyone is an online comedian now. New media pranks are on the rise and quickly gaining popularity on social media and even threatening the business of stand-up comedians. The art of stand-up comedy is struggling in Nigeria, especially with comedians choosing to go the Instagram route.
“Unfortunately, comedians do not receive royalties for their creative works. Thus, the “monkey dey work, baboon dey chop” scenario becomes famous, because any comedian can rehearse a joke as if it were their own.
“Humour is an essential ingredient to keep Nigerians sane in these difficult times and I hope that with the right support and structures, the industry will thrive.”
Explaining how his career began, Xtreme said his friends and family realized he had a sense of humour, adding that through hard work and consistency he was able to push himself to the level he achieved.
Xtreme’s first attempt at creating professional television content was Chronicles of Solo, which was licensed to DSTV’s Africa Magic cable channel.