He is the young man who plays the lead role in the popular soap, Just the two of us and produced by Opa Williams. An emerging face in the industry no doubt, the Agukwu nri, Anambra state born actor takes us down memory lane revealing to us how his love for movies started and also how he has been able to keep his head above board.
How did your movie career take off?
It all started in 1996 in Enugu state when I was still in the higher Institution, in my 200 levels precisely.
A friend of mine had asked me to accompany him to NTA Enugu for an audition and when we got there, the person reading was not giving the director what he wanted so he called me, asked me what I was there for and even though I wasn’t originally part of the cast, he gave me the script to read and the rest they say, is history. However, I started professional acting with the help of Steve Onu (Yaw) who introduced me to Pat Oghre, who later gave me a role in everyday people. This was in 2006.
So how would you describe your growth in the movie industry?
It has been gradual but steady, though not as fast as I would want it to be but I am still moving to a higher ground and I thank God for everything.
Would you say you have gotten your break in the film industry?
wouldn’t say I’ve yet but I think I am still on the verge of a real break but for now the series by Opa Williams called Just the two of us, has brought me a little fame.
What are the determining factors for accepting a script from directors?
It has to be good and sometimes if the pay is right too, all well and good.
How would describe the evolving nature of Nollywood, from the time you started out with your first film till date, including collaborations with Hollywood ?
Nollywood has really evolved from the way it started, even though we are witnessing a small set back but as we speak, more people who have gone abroad for training have come back to reinvent and rejuvenate the industry. We now have a lot of movie series that will match the American series ,I just finished from a set of Ebonylife TV and ‘ the African adaptation of Desperate house wives but ours is Desperate house wives, Africa. Ebonylife TV went down to America to get the franchise to shoot the African version.
What are some of the problems you think are militating against the growth of the movie Industry today?
Well a few of them are greed, incompetence, lack of passion, lack of good and proper organization, and a group of cabal who dictate certain things in the industry.
How many films do you have under your belt?
I’ve not done a lot of films but I’ve done more of soaps and series.The films I’ve done are; B for boy, a short film that was showcased in six film festivals around the world and When dreams fall apart.
Any recognition yet for your work?
None yet but by his special grace, it will happen soon.
Do you have any special or particular set of people you love working with in the industry?
I can work with anybody.
Is acting a temporary thing for you?
No. I intend to continue acting for as long as I can.
Do you have any plans to take your career to your home state?
Well, the thought of taking acting to my home state hasn’t crossed my mind yet but I’ve started featuring in Igbo productions now.
In your opinion, what determines a good movie ?
It should have good suspense and be able to capture its audience within the first 10 minutes, which means the story line should be good and the actors should be on point and the director should also know how to help bring out the best in a story in terms of the visual contents.
Who would you say is the person that has made the biggest Impact on your career in Nollywood ?
Well I would say Opa Williams has made a great deal of impact in my career because he gave me a chance to prove myself. God will bless him for giving me the opportunity to show case myself.
Would you ever act a nude scene?
I would do a romantic semi nude scene for the right prize but not a total strip down for the right prize.
If you are given one chance to meet some of Hollywood’s greatest, who would you love to meet?
I would like to meet Denzel Washington, Will Smith, John Travolta, Bruce Willis, Samuel L Jackson, Alpacino, Keifer Sutherland, Brad Pitt, and Robert Deniro. But Denzel Washington will be my number one pick. He is just an amazing actor.
You are married . How did you meet your wife?
I met her in church on a blessed Sunday morning. It was as if we had known each other for a while. Ironically, I actually went to the church to see another lady who didn’t have my time.
You seem to have a lot of grey hairs on your head yet u look so young. Why is this so?
Well first of all, I don’t have grey hair, what I have I call silver linings which means I am still a young man Grey hair is for old people and I am not old.
Have you had any problems over casting roles because of your grey hair?
None that I can recall.
What fond childhood memories can you readily recall?
My growing up years was fun and interesting. I attended Elizabeth fowler primary school and Yewande memorial primary school. My secondary school was in the sacred heart junior seminary Nsude and St John cross seminary, Nsukka as well as Gbaja boys high school Surulere, Lagos.
Where do you see your career in ten years time?
To the next level by the grace of God. I just pray I can move with the flow and will be part of the new dawn that is coming soon.
What else do you do besides acting?
I model and do some small business by the side.
What lessons has life taught you?
It has taught me to always expect the unexpected, in other words, we can’t have it all.