Walt Disney Animation Studios is teaming up with Pan-African comic book entertainment company Kugali to create a new original series called Iwájú, which will debut on Disney+ in 2022.
WDAS chief creative officer Jennifer Lee made the announcement this week, citing Kugali founders Tolu Olowofoyeku, Ziki Nelson and Hamid Ibrahim’s dream to bring African stories—created by African artists—to the world through comics and animation.
“Developing Iwájú with Tolu, Ziki and Hamid is not only a first-of-its-kind collaboration for Walt Disney Animation Studios,” said Lee, “but a personal pleasure for all of us who have the opportunity to work with them. The story Kugali is telling is powerful and dynamic, and we can’t wait to help realize their series through the talents of our Disney Animation artists.”
The long-form series, steeped in science fiction, is set in Lagos, Nigeria, exploring deep themes of class, innocence and challenging the status quo.
“This show will combine Disney’s magic and animation expertise with Kugali’s fire and storytelling authenticity,” says director Ziki Nelson. “Iwájú represents a personal childhood dream of mine to tell my story and that of my people.”