By Nnamdi Odumody
YouNeek Studios is a creative hub which utilizes graphic novels, animation, video games, and other forms of media to tell extraordinary stories about African heroes, and heroines, that everyone can relate to.
Its goal is to put Africa on the global map in the graphic novels, animation and superhero stories. Its Cofounder and CEO, Adewunmi Roye Okupe, a Bachelor and Master’s Degree holder in Computer Science from George Washington University, was inspired by the Marvel Superhero franchise which led him to found YouNeek Studios in 2012. Through this platform, Roye has written, produced and directed several animated productions, including but not limited to 2D|3D animated short films, TV commercials, show openers, music videos and much more.
In August 2015, Roye released his debut graphic novel titled ‘’E.X.O: The Legend Of Wale Williams Part One – a science fiction superhero series about redemption set in a futuristic 2025 Africa. It tells the story of Wale Williams, a young man who inherits a suit with superpowers after his father goes missing. After been tricked into returning back home to Lagoon City, Nigeria after a five year absence, Wale embarks on a journey to investigate his father’s mysterious disappearance.
Learning the incredible powers of the suit, Wale realizes that he must restore hope to his city by preventing disastrous attacks from Oniku who leads a group of violent extremists known as THE CREED. It earned a 5 star rating on Amazon.com from reviewers, earning number one spot on the Amazon best seller chart in Science Fiction Comics category in May 2016, with features in CNN, Forbes, The New York Times, NBC, The Guardian, ABC7, BBC, The Huffington Post, Mashable, etc.
His sophomore novel, Malika Warrior Queen is about a Malika, a queen of Azzaz and amazon who struggles to keep peace in her ever expanding empire. As a young child, Malika inherited the crown from her father in unusual circumstances splinting their kingdom of Azzaz into two. After years of civil war, Malika united all of Azzaz and expanding it to become one of the greatest empires in all of West Africa. This created enemies within her inner circle and one of the leading superpowers in the world at that time Ming Dynasty of China took notice. Queen Malika now faces a huge task of fighting internal foes to prevent her empire from collapse and safeguarding it from a foreign force which will leave no stone at conquering and exterminating her people.
Windmaker the History of Atala, his third book, was inspired by African mythology. It is about a breathtaking kingdom called Atala. With dragons, mythical relics, a feuding royal family, and magical swords, this book brings suspense to its readers in an inspiring African set up.
The YouNeek African Heroes is an all age coloring and activity book for children aged 0-8 years old. They color the amazing superheroes in its library, enjoy learning about science, history, monuments and mythology linked to Africa while solving mazes, crossword, solving puzzles, etc.
In 2019, YouNeek Studios plans to release Malika Warrior Queen Part 3, Iyanu Child of Wonder – a teenage girl who has no knowledge of her past but discovers that she has powers which rival the divine ones in ancient Yorubaland, E.X.O : The Legend Of Wale Williams Part 4, and Windmaker: Return of a King.
In less than three years, YouNeek Studios has sold over 100,000 books with Hollywood star Jamie Foxx publicly endorsing E.X.O on Facebook, and plans to adapt its YouNeekVerse range of superheroes into big budget movies for the African and global audience.