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In Nigeria, film stars deploy to plead for election peace

In Nigeria, film stars deploy to plead for election peace

In this photo taken on Feb. 18, 2019, performers record a music video calling for a peaceful election, at a golf resort outside of Kano, northern Nigeria.  AP

KANO, Nigeria — As emergencies go, it had a catchy tune. Faced with a Nigerian election that could spiral into violence, some in the popular film industry known as Kannywood gathered this week to shoot an urgent music video appealing to the country for peace.

On an impromptu set outside the northern city of Kano, young women smiled and swiveled in unison as male dancers sashayed by. A singer gestured at the camera and lip-synced a plea for Africa’s largest democracy to keep its cool.

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Within hours, the video was edited and blasted across social media for Nigeria’s some 190 million people and a vast diaspora that enjoys homegrown film industry Nollywood — considered the world’s third-largest behind Hollywood and Bollywood — and Kannywood, its northern wing, named for its location in Kano. /ee

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