Samantha Iwowo

Dr Samantha Iwowo

  • Principal Academic in Directing Drama for Film and Television
  • Weymouth House W210, Talbot Campus, Fern Barrow, Poole, BH12 5BB
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Samantha Iwowo is a screenwriter, director and researcher, who commenced her career as a commissioned screenwriter with South Africa’s largest cable network, M-Net. Her research and praxis which lie in Postcolonialism with leanings in Transnational-Cinema Studies, support creative industries, cultural heritage, and challenge marginalisation. The outputs from these studies reflect a fusion of her industry practice, scholarship, and education delivery.


Iwowo’s praxis has birth fifty published screenplays, including episodes of Tinsel (2008 - ongoing), Nigeria’s longest-running daily drama series, as well as Oloibiri (2016), the internationally celebrated feature. The film, made in collaboration with Student Emmy and Academy awards winning director, Curtis Graham, and produced by Rogers Ofime, explores extremities of oil exploitation in Nigeria by multinational corporations. Oloibiri premiered at the Cannes Film Festival, in 2015. Another screenplay, Mugabe (2022), is a biography on Zimbabwe’s Ex-President, Robert Mugabe; commissioned by Theatron Media Inc., Canada, it stars British-Nigerian actor, Hakeem Kae-Kazim.

Iwowo has directed five films including Go Get Milk (2015), a short advocacy piece about the teenage knife-crime incidents in South-East London. Another, Paint Brush (forthcoming), is a gender-related drama also about knife-crime. In 2022, she also directed the AHRC-funded film, Articulations of Politics in Nigeria (2022), exploring how Nigerian artists give expression to the politics of the country...


Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person's work contributes towards the following SDGs:

Quality education

"Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all"

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Gender equality

"Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls"

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Decent work and economic growth

"Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all"

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Reduced inequalities

"Reduce inequality within and among countries"

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Sustainable cities and communities

"Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable"

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Peace, justice and strong institutions

"Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels"

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Partnership for the Goals

"Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the Global Partnership for Sustainable Development"

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Journal Articles


  • Iwowo, V., Case, P. and Iwowo, S., 2023. 2023. “Leadership & Culture”, In The SAGE Handbook of Leadership Second Edition. In: Schedlitzki, D., Larsson, M., Carroll, B., Bligh, M. and Epitropaki, O., eds. The SAGE Handbook of Leadership. UK: SAGE.



PhD Students

  • Ucheyamere Chimdiebube Nkwam-Uwaoma, 2024. Horror Film in Nollywood: An Evaluation of Women Portrayal and Participation (2000-2022), (In progress)
  • Rogers Ofime, 2027. Testing the Imaginary of Minimalist Production Model: Intersectionality and Ubuntu, as Disruptors to Hegemonic Entry-Barriers in UK Film Industry., (In progress)
  • Francis Adeyinka Thomas, 2025. Yoruba Neo-Nollywood Film Producing: Challenges and Prospects

Invited Lectures

  • Story Structure and Motifs, Lagos, Nigeria, 22 Apr 2022 more
  • Screenwriting in Africa: Stories, Tools & Future, Lagos, Nigeria, 02 Apr 2022 more
  • Keynote: “Creativity in the New Workplace”., Nigeria, 19 Mar 2022 more
  • “African Cinema, past, present & imagined futures", London South Bank University, London., 01 Jan 2022 more
  • A Postcolonial Review of African Apocalypse, Bristol, UK, 01 Jan 2022 more
  • African Cinema...Colonial Nigeria to Neo-Nollywood, London, UK, 01 Jan 2022 more
  • Birkbeck, University of London, 25 Nov 2019 more
  • "Nollywood as a 'World' Cinema", University of Bristol, 14 Nov 2019 more
  • The Poetics of Mise en Scène, Nigeria, 08 Nov 2019 more
  • Nollywood: From Whence We Came, London Southbank University, 01 Dec 2017 more
  • Production Patterns of Neo-Nollywood, University College London, 15 Mar 2017 more


  • Co-Investigator on the AHRC Project Led By, Dr. Jacqueline Maingard. Title - "Colonial Reels: Histories and Afterlives of Colonial Film Collections" (Grant: £839,632) (AHRC, 01 Apr 2024). Awarded
  • Co-Investigator on the AHRC Project Led By, Dr. Jacqueline Maingard. Title - "Colonial Reels: Histories and Afterlives of Colonial Film Collections" (Grant: £839,632) (AHRC, 01 Apr 2024). Awarded

External Responsibilities

  • University of York, External Examiner (2020-2024)

Journal Reviewing/Refereeing

  • Media Practice and Education, Open peer review, 01 Jan 2021

Public Engagement & Outreach Activities

  • Screening Discussion (14 Oct 2020)
  • Roundtable: Convener, ‘Towards a Sustainable Framework for Transnational Neo-Nollywood’, A Roundtable. University College London (UCL). (06 Jan 2020)
  • Presentation (01 Jul 2019-05 Jul 2019)
  • ‘Nollywood Audiences and Human-Rights Films. Against the Backdrop of the Fela'. Presentation at the seminar, "The Past and Future of Rights Cinema Day", Birckbeck Institute of Moving Images (BIMI) (16 Mar 2019)
  • ArtoP: The Visual Articulations of Politics in Nigeria (04 Mar 2019-06 Mar 2019)
  • A Pre-Screening Introduction of RAGE (1999), at the Afrika Film Festival, Bristol; 2017 (10 Nov 2017)
  • The Past and Future of Rights Cinema, by Birkbeck Institute for the Moving Image

Conference Presentations

  • Royal Anthropological Institute (RAI) Film Festival – 2023, “Redrafting Colonial Legacies of Cinema: Decolonising Film Directing”, In the panel titled, Colonial Film Imaginaries and 21st Century Futures”., 01 Jan 2023, UK
  • 13th iREPRESENT Documentary Film Festival; Panel - CORA Art Stampede, Can the Underserved “Speak”? Questions Situated in a Subaltern Location, 01 Jan 2023, Nigeria
  • SOAS Festival of Ideas: Screen Worlds Filmmaking Showcase, Chair: Film Screening and Q&A of Añuli Agina's Documentary, Behind my Nollywood Screen, 01 Jan 2022, UK
  • PMAPS Colloquium, Cornell University, U.S.A, A Trajectory of Screen Decolonisation: Centring Ubuntu in Film Directing, 01 Jan 2022, U.S.A
  • 12th iREPRESENT Film Festival; Panel, Rep-Orange Festival Exchange, Keynote Lecture: “Creativity in the New Workplace”., 01 Jan 2022, Nigeria
  • Centre for the Study of Emotions and Social Justice (CESJ): Roundtable - Media and Social Stereotypes, Vestigial Presences of Colonial Stereotype: A Postcolonial Analysis of Contemporary African Leadership, and Nollywood (Paper co-presented with Vanessa Iwowo), 01 Jan 2022, UK/Hybrid
  • Centre for the Study of Emotions and Social Justice (CESJ): Roundtable - Media and Social Stereotypes, 01 Jan 2022, Bournemouth University, UK/Hybrid
  • African Apocalypse - Screening and Symposium, A Postcolonial Review of African Apocalypse, 01 Jan 2022, University of Bristol, UK
  • The Stuart-Hall Project - Screening and Roundtable, 01 Jan 2022, UK
  • Decolonising African Cinema: A History, 2021, Moderated the Session titled, “Continuity and Change”, involving the discussants, Balufu Bakupa Kanyinda, Boukary Sawadogo, 21 Oct 2021, United Arab Emirate
  • Fusion Learning Conference: Innovation and Excellence in the Pandemic, “Allyship and Decolonisation of Curriculum”., 28 Jun 2021, Bournemouth
  • Doing Diversity Better Conference, ‘Decolonising the Curricula: A Preface’, 22 Apr 2021, UK
  • Colonial Film Archives: Interrogations and Interventions, Subtext of Colonialism in Nigeria, 2020: A Post-Mortem of the #EndSARS Lekki Toll-Gate Massacre, 19 Mar 2021, UK
  • Women Academic Conference., 'Decolonising the Curricula: A Preface’,, 01 Jan 2021, United Kingdom
  • Social Impact Symposium, "Scripting and Filming Paint Brush – Exploring the Identity of Black, Teenage and Female in a Nigerian Diaspora Community of Peckham in London”, In the panel Fiction Forms and Impact., 01 Jan 2021, Germany
  • 7th Annual Conference of the Association of Communication Scholars & Professionals of Nigeria (ACSPN), in Partnership with UNESCO, ‘Reading Apaye, as Emem-isong’s Construction of Nigerian Female Identity in Media…’, 02 Sep 2020, Virtual
  • CCARHT Symposium: The Several ‘Rs’ of Trafficking, ‘Tackling the Othering of Nigerian Socio-Political Cinema’., 01 Jan 2019, Cambridge, UK
  • Researching Africa Day, Conference; University of Oxford, 'Neo-Nollywood: Exploring the Cinema Movement through Tripartite Lenses', 04 Mar 2017, Oxford



External Media and Press

Broadcast Interview

  • BBC Radio, Solent, UK., ‘Bournemouth University Lecturer, Dr. Samantha Iwowo, on Hattie McDaniel - The First African American to Win an Oscar’., Martin, K, 29 Feb 2020.