Stories

Worlds collide! Hacking telenovelas to promote family planning in Africa

Kampala, Uganda Cultural November 8 @ 5:29am

The success of telenovelas in Sub-Saharan Africa is well noted. When one scrappy NGO wanted to make its own telenovela to show strong women and promote contraception, it found that it was too expensive. So they turned the model on its head! Rather than film their own telenovela, they acquired the rights to a Venezuelan telenovela with the goal to recut, rescript and redub it to create a different story altogether. This “hacked” or “remixed” telenovela (titled “Love and Wealth”) is being produced right now in Kampala by a team of Ugandan editors. They did research with fans of telenovelas in Tanzania, Uganda and Malawi to find out what people like or don’t like about telenovelas and are incorporating that into the remix. Their plan is to distribute it to as many tv stations in as many countries as possible, and hope to get the lowest “cost per impression” of any social issue telenovela ever made. The show will premier in early 2020 and could transform the way that broadcast television is used in Sub-Saharan Africa for social issues.

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