Kindly tell us all you can about yourself and what you do for a living?
I am a young Actor, Film Maker, model and Host but mostly an Actor and a Film Maker. I’ve starred in a couple of movies, series and short films and I also run a Media Production outfit called House of Baaj Pictures. We received a Zafaa award for best short film in 2015 for the film “Seeing Betrayal” which is free to watch on YouTube as well and currently working on filming a series.
As a person I’m pretty much a simple guy, I love to work, I love my work and I love preparing to work When I’m not working, I love sports, adventure, travelling and most of all, I love watching movies, cartoons, anime and TV series.
ON HIS PERSONALITY
What was your childhood dream and what was life like growing up?
I had a bunch of childhood dreams. I wanted to be a lot of things growing up so I did a lot dabbling. Wanted to be a scientist then a computer engineer, then a basketball player, then an actor, then artist, then a musician and so on and so forth but in all I just wanted to be the best of me. My life growing up was pretty simple, I was raised in a comfortable loving family. I didn’t have everything in the world but I had everything I needed.
Did you face a notable challenge while growing up, who did that influence your personality?
I did, just like everyone else. Apart from the usual travails of finding yourself, maturing and learning to grow, I am from a polygamous family so to speak. Also my parents later split up when I was a teenager which was pretty hard for me at the time, watching a family fall apart but we’ve all come a long way from there and moved on and up, together. Grown to be quiet headstrong and self-reliant in most aspects of my life.
I know you’re a man with many passions. What influenced your career in acting?
Like a lot of young ones I was quite addicted to television. Even though my Dad banned me from watching it and I’d get in trouble for disobeying but it still didn’t stop me. I would spend a lot of time watching movies, cartoons and series that sometimes I wouldn’t even fully understand but I didn’t care. I would see the beauty of these creations and constantly marvel at them. Even though it took a really long time to finally gather the courage to go for it, the seed had been planted really early and it was just a matter of time.
Has it been easy being an actor in Nollywood, what difficulties did you have to contend with?
Nothing in life is ever easy and in Nigeria everything is always hard. It just always feels like everything and anything is working against you. More so in Nollywood. The first issue was believing enough in myself and in my dream to actually go for it then getting support from my family as well which didn’t come easy at all. I worked 9-5 for about 2yrs after leaving school before deciding to go into entertainment fully which was a very risky move. My Mum especially was scared for me but she has always been a woman of faith and has always believed in whatever I choose to set my mind to so she had my back, awesome woman. Started out going for numerous auditions, I’m saying close to a dozen or more a month for about the first 3years of my career. Whilst doing that I focused on improving myself as an actor and as a person. Constantly learning, researching, rehearsing, developing new skills and reinventing myself.
If you could acquire a special skill or power right now, what will it be?
I would really love to be able to play number of musical instruments and speak a lot of languages. Music is just too wonderful and being able to create it is magical to me. Being able to meet and converse with different people with different backgrounds from all around the world would be heaven to me. It’ll feel like an endless exciting adventure. And for Powers, I would love
If you could influence a drastic change in the world, what would you do?
I am very much against the permanent ideologies of the world which are tied to culture, tradition, religion and social beliefs. A lot of unwritten and written laws placed on our lives controlling the way we are expected to live and exist are either outdated, wrong or just an unfair form of control. If I could influence the world which I believe I already am, I’d push for us to live our lives the way that makes us happy as individuals, It wouldn’t cause anyone any harm as it will only promotes the well-being of the planet and people that live in it. Rather than the beliefs and wants of the people in authority or power and that of some ancient civilization’s culture, religion or school of thought.
What do you think is unique about our country, Nigeria?
As a country we have so many resources both in terms of labour and product. We Nigerians are like water and rock at the same time. We can reshape and adapt ourselves to any situation to ensure our survival and we can be dogged as well in not wanting to give up on ourselves. Unfortunately this is also our flaw. The fact that we seem to be able to thrive in the most adverse of conditions has made us not fight for our rights and fight against those who have unjustly taking advantage of us. We are unique because we are so powerful but we knowingly or unknowingly choose to be be weak, gullible and ignorant.
If you had the opportunity to inspire someone with a story from your life’s experience, what would that story be?
A friend of mine had me meet with a young new actor to help him out. I did the best I could. A couple of weeks later he called me up and asked me “What kept you going?”. I had never really been asked that before at the time and never actually thought about it. When I think back to the number of “Nos” and how it looked very unlikely that anything would give, I wondered, what did keep me going!? So I answered him like I was answering myself, “I just wanted to Act”, and he understood.
What I am trying to say is, you have just one life and you have a dream or dreams. The obstacles and disappointments and all will always be there. But what should most importantly be on you mind (and this should never leave you mind and your heart) is WHAT DO YOU WANT TO DO WITH YOUR LIFE? That’s honestly all that matters. Because if you’ve really decided that this is what you want to do, then you can and must spend your life chasing it. Endeavour to achieve it no matter what because there’s nothing else worth doing.
How much effort have you had to put into advancing and developing your career as an actor?
I’ve had to put a whole lot. Starting out, all I had was the passion and the zeal to want to be an Actor and Film maker. I wasn’t particularly even good at it. So I thought to join a film school but I didn’t have enough money at the time. I knew no one in the industry and I didn’t have any personal or family ties to any influential Nollywood figure either. So I knew I was starting from the very bottom but I also knew there’s no where else to go but up. So I began studying off the internet particularly YouTube and also learning from any actor or director I’d meet or work with. Also making connections of my own through the industry. I focused on improving every day, on every project, with every role because I had a very big dream and each time I learnt something new I felt like I had taken one more step to achieving it.
ON HIS CAREER
Kindly give us a list of some of the movies you’ve done.
To name a few A Soldier Story, Road to Yesterday, Four Crooks and a Rookie, 5ive, The Governor, Seeing Betrayal, Studio, Hush, etc. and a number of movies and series yet to be released.
What has been your most gratifying role as an actor? Please give reasons.
At the moment I’d have to say playing Adze Tsenogu on Hush. It was my first time playing a particular character for such a long time as we filmed Hush for about a year. And of all my projects he’s the character the fans have gravitated to the most. He has really had an impact on a lot of people’s lives which in turn has had an impact on mine.
I know it sometimes can be tough, what’s inspires you to go the extra mile and not give up?
It’s a combination of what I’m trying to achieve, which my dreams are and what I want to do. Like I said before I JUST WANT TO ACT. As simple as that maybe it is a bit complex and deep. It’s really all I want to do (so to speak), thus I’d most of the time do anything for it and go any mile to achieve it.. Continue Reading
Photography by Ellis Mbeku for EMSTUDIOSng
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