A new original documentary from HBO is coming titled, The Legend of the Underground.
This 90-minute film is set to examine systemic discrimination in Nigeria and the country’s Anti-LGBTQ laws. The documentary tells the struggle against discrimination, through the lens of the youth going through it.
These young people are challenging ideas of gender, conformity, and civil rights in Nigeria.
According to HBO, the documentary follows two tight-knit groups of chosen families. In New York, Micheal Ighodaro lives with his Nigerian friends and works to advocate for the people and the communities he left behind. Attacked for his identity while in Nigeria.
Meanwhile in Nigeria, a circle of friends struggle with the option to either search for a safe haven abroad, or to stay and fight a system that seeks to silence them.
A statement from HBO reads,
The Legend of the Underground paints a portrait of a new generation that uses social media, underground radio, and any other resources at their disposal to fight for their rights of personal expression.
Through bold creativity, they work to spark a cultural revolution that would challenge the ideals of gender, conformity, and civil rights in Nigeria.
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See the trailer below
In 2013, Nigeria enacted the anti-LGBTQ law — the Same-Sex Marriage (Prohibition) Bill (SSMPA). In the years since, this law has led to harassment, imprisonment, extortion, and also violence against anyone seen as not conforming to societal and cultural norms.
Nneka Onuorah and Giselle Bailey are the directors of the documentary. Also, Mike Jackson, John Legend, Ty Stiklorius, and Austyn Biggers of Get Lifted Film Co, make up the executive producers.
For HBO the senior producer is Sara Rodriguez; with executive producers Nancy Abraham, Lisa Heller.
The Legend of the Underground is coming to HBO on June 29, 2021.
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