Crossover Cinema: A Hybrid Culture


Crossover cinema is used to encapsulate an emerging form of cinema that crosses cultural borders at the stage of conceptualization and production and hence manifests a hybrid cinematic grammar at the textual level, as well as crossing over in terms of its distribution and reception’ (Khorana, 2013)

This idea of ‘Crossover cinema’ has allowed audiences to enhance their understanding of other cultures, through the inclusion of their own cinematic culture as well as others. The representation of diaspora through mainstream media and diasporic media allows those communities to maintain links to their origin whilst increasing their connection to the industrialised worlds and enhancing their confidence in different social situations. Although various positive outcomes exist when it comes to crossover cinema, it may also have a negative impact on an audience’s perception of another culture.


Slumdog Millionaire (2008) is a prominent example of crossover cinema in Western culture. It is seen as an authentic representation of slum life in India from a Western perspective. “Slumdog Millionaire…literally crossed over to the main (nonforeign) group…The film’s cross-cultural affiliations no longer rendered it foreign, and this is an important indicator of its crossover production, content, and appeal.” (Khorana, 2013) The film’s director, Danny Boyle, is of British origin, which seemingly undermined the authenticity of the Indian life, as it contained large amounts of British influence and showed a mostly negative perspective of the Indian culture.

Essentially, whilst crossover films can have a negative impact on the way other cultures are perceived, intercultural communication and understanding can be improved through accurate representation and thus enhance the lives of diasporic communities.


Khorana. S, 2013, ‘Crossover cinema: a conceptual and genealogical overview’, University of Wollongong Research Online, viewed 3 September 16 <http://ro.uow.edu.au/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=2020&context=lhapapers>


Global Film: The Nollywood Industry

In Western culture, a Global film is considered to be a production that is not made in the major western countries, such as the UK, the US, Canada, etc. The emergence of global film industries, such as Nollywood and Korean films, have contributed to the increasing globalisation of film.


Beginning in the early 1990’s, Nollywood has become the second largest film industry in the world, producing over 2000 films a year. These films are relatively low budget, thus producing fairly low quality films that are released straight to video, rather than being released in a cinema. This is due to the feeling of insecurity amongst Nollywood audiences, as there is a lack of safety outside of the home.


These films have become vital to the economic and social growth of Nigeria as well as Africa as a whole, as it has become a cultural phenomenon amongst local audiences. While it has not entirely popularized itself outside of Africa, the production themes and characters have become central to the representation of local audiences in cinematic productions. “While there is no doubt that Nollywood exhibits the hybrid character that is obvious in many forms of African popular arts, it is its acute notation of locality that gives it an unprecedented acceptability as the local cinematic expression in Nigeria and indeed in Africa.” (Okome, 2007) The uniqueness of the production of Nollywood films provides a deeper insight to the Nigerian culture than would otherwise be visible in western culture.

These films ultimately generate a sense of community amongst the creators and audiences of Nigerian cinema, thus allowing it to thrive as a film industry.


Okome. O, 2007, ‘Nollywood: Spectatorship, Audience and the Sites of Consumption’, Postcolonial Text, Vol 3, No 2, viewed 4 September 16 < http://postcolonial.univ-paris13.fr/index.php/pct/article/viewFile/763/425>