Monica Swaida, a Nigerian-American showbiz entrepreneur, has launched a documentary series called ‘Tales of Our Legend’ on Amazon Prime.
The series aims to tell the stories of African legends who have made an impact in society but have been forgotten or neglected in Nigeria.
Swaida said she was inspired to create the series after meeting some of the legends during a movie production in Nigeria in 2019. She said she was shocked to see how they were living and how they were not appreciated in their own country, while they were still celebrated in the diaspora.
She said she felt the need to document their stories and share them with the world, because if they did not tell their stories, no one else would. She said she wanted to enlighten Nigerians and make them fall in love with their history and culture.
The series features interviews with 25 legends, some of whom have passed away. Some of these legends featured included Rachel Oniga, Tee Mac, Bongos Igwue, Sadiq Daba, and Sani Bello, among others. Swaida said she funded the project herself and shot it in different parts of Nigeria. She said she plans to continue the series and document more legends.
“We did our first episode in 2020 but we didn’t have the market and after trying so much, we decided to partner with Amazon in America and started showing on January 1, 2024. We have the first season out while the second season is ready. The mission is to ensure our people get to see the documentary and acquaint themselves with our past legends, the ones who are dead and equally the ones currently alive and who need to be celebrated. Someone must document this, hence why I have decided to shoulder the responsibility, financially and generally,” she said.
Swaida, who also produced and starred in the film ‘Esohe’, said the series was her way of giving back to her society. She said she has been in the entertainment industry since she was 14, working as a backup singer for legendary musicians like Majek Fashek, Sonny Okosun, and Evi Edna Ogoli. She said she loves music, movies, and insurance equally.
‘Tales of Our Legend’ is currently streaming on Amazon Prime.