By Emmanuel Akitobi | Shadow and Act May 17, 2013 at 12:33PM
The highly anticipated film adaptation of Ivory Coast-born/France-based author Marguerite Abouet's popular graphic novel series, Aya de Yopougon (Aya of Yop City) will open in France on July 17.
Abouet's Aya de Yopougon series, which is illustrated by her husband, Clement Oubrerie, is a global phenomenon that has been translated into numerous languages around the world. The film's premise is as follows:
"Welcome to Yopougon, a working-class neighborhood of Abidjan in the late 70s, renamed Yop City – to sound like an American movie! This is home to Aya and her two friends, Adjoua and Bintou. The're 19-years-old, a time in your life when everything seems possible. But while Aya would like to become a doctor one day, her friends are more into nightclubbing at the local "maquis" and hunting for a husband. Around this dynamic trio, we cross characters with diverse destinies like Ignace, Aya's runaround father who juggles several "offices", and Moussa, the son of the powerful Bonaventure Sissoko who counts on his Toyota to pick up girls. There's also Fanta and Koro, the mothers who try to protect their daughters. Or Grégoire, the "Parisian" who blows his cash at the famous hotel Ivoire. A true chorale comedy, Aya of Yop City is a chronicle of an unexpected Africa, modern and urban."
The film, which will be released by UGC Distribution, features the voice work of Senegalese star Aissa Maiga, amongst others. Needless to say, her involvement alone is enough to make this a must-see for me.
There's no word on whether we'll get a release here in the U.S., but Aya de Yopougon is definitely one to look out for if it comes to your city or gets a DVD release.
Watch the first trailer below, which, unfortunately, isn't subtitled in English. The poster follows: