Renowned Nollywood actress Toyin Abraham has opened up about her recent hospitalization, a consequence of the distress caused by the unauthorized sharing of her latest cinematic venture, “Malaika.” The meticulously crafted film, with a substantial budget, had its exclusive cinema release on December 15, 2023.
In a press conference held at the Federal Investigation Department of the Nigeria Police Force in Alagbon, Ikoyi, on Wednesday, Abraham recounted the emotional turmoil she experienced upon stumbling upon her movie circulating illegally on social media platforms.
“I saw my movie and another movie, and I was like, am I dreaming? And the next thing, they put it on Telegram, telling people they are going to upload it by 12 pm. I opened the link and I saw Malaika; I wanted to run mad. It was like my whole world was coming to an end in front of me,” shared Abraham with the media.
The esteemed actress, visibly affected, spoke about the toll of the illicit distribution on her mental well-being, stating, “If you look at me, you will know that I am actually not okay. I had to come from the hospital. I have been having panic attacks. It is not easy shooting a movie close to N500 million, and you just see it out there.”
Abraham, who considers the leaked movie a project close to her heart, explained the active role she, along with her management team and Filmone, played in engaging tech experts to combat piracy. They sought assistance from platforms like Google and Telegram to break the links and put an end to the unlawful distribution.
Expressing her commitment to the broader cause of combating piracy in the creative industry, Abraham emphasized that the fight extends beyond her individual projects. She underscored the collective responsibility to shield the entertainment and creative sector from such infringements.
The actress disclosed significant financial losses due to the movie leak, with potential viewers opting to wait for free online releases. Despite the setback, Abraham remains steadfast in her commitment to raising awareness and advocating for a piracy-free creative industry.
“I have lost a lot because even when you go on social media, you will see people saying, oh, we will not go to the cinema. We will wait for the movie to drop. Even fans abroad will say they are waiting for the movie to drop,” she lamented. “It is not about the money now. It is about fighting a particular cause for the entertainment and creative industry, which I am happy about.”