BY ESE DIBEBI
The MTV Staying Alive Foundation and MTV Base (DStv channel 322) have confirmed that the world premiere of MTV Shuga (series IV) will be held at the Silverbird Galleria, Lagos, Nigeria on September 10. The sizzling sex and relationships drama and multimedia campaign developed by the MTV Staying Alive Foundation and MTV Base in partnership with NACA, PEPFAR, The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, UNICEF and UNFPA carries important public health messaging aimed at a young audience.
Fusing sexual and other public health messaging with world-class storytelling and appealing, believable characters, MTV Shuga (series 4) picks up the story some months after the end of series 3, exploring a number of themes and storylines that include first sex, grooming of adolescent girls, prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) of HIV, disclosure of HIV status, sexual assault within a relationship, stigma, mentoring, and the use of helplines.
Filmed on location in Lagos earlier this year, MTV Shuga Season IV is scheduled to air on 120 broadcasters across the world, making it the most widely distributed season to date. For the first time, the highly anticipated fourth season will be translated into French and Portuguese language versions, extending the reach of MTV Shuga into Francophone and Lusophone territories.
Last seen with a life-threatening gunshot injury sustained in the dramatic season 3 finale of the TV drama, former ‘runs girl’ Sophie, profoundly affected by her brush with death, and has vowed to turn her life around, working part-time on the NACA 6222 helpline and going out with Leo. Meanwhile businessman Nii, now separated from his wife Malaika (Leonora Okine), has turned his predatory gaze onto a new and younger target. Music promoter Femi should be in the blissful early stages of a blossoming new relationship with Sheila, but stigma rears its ugly head before Femi takes brave steps to confront it… Heavily pregnant Princess is struggling to come to terms with impending motherhood and HIV with the help of mentor Eniola, while Weki is on an emotional roller-coasting trying to keep his HIV+ positive status secret from his girlfriend, Leila as their intimacy develops.
Among the cast attending the red carpet premiere are returning cast members Dorcas Shola Fapson (Sophie), Emmanuel Ikubese (Femi), Sharon Ezeamaka (Princess), Nick Mutuma (Leo), Chris Attoh (Nii), Timini Egbuson (Tobi) and Olumide Oworu (Weki). New cast members Adesua Etomi (Sheila), Peace Hyde (Eniola), Zoe Favour (Mary), Jemima Osunde (Leila), Mohau Mokoatle (Bongi), Tunbosun “Tuby” Aiyedehin (Sheila’s mum), Jude Chukwuka (Sheila’s dad), Kate Adepegba (Sheila’s aunt), Paul Adams (Sheila’s uncle), Ifeanyi Dike Jr (Sheila’s brother), Najite Dede (Mary’s mum) and Olakunle Dada (Mary’s dad) are also expected to attend.
Other famous faces involved in series 4 include Ice Prince, Patoranking and Reminisce, who collaborated to create “Catch Me”, the new theme song for MTV Shuga. Patoranking also appears as himself during episode 1, while Eva Alordiah, M.I. and Jesse Jagz make cameo appearances later in the series.
MTV Shuga (series IV) premieres on MTV Base (ROA) on Sunday, September 13 at 9:30 pm.