See Nollywood Life: Rich Industry, Poor Actors and Actresses

See Nollywood Life: Rich Industry, Poor Actors and Actresses

the posh is complete. quick vehicles, large houses, fat financial institution debts and
beautiful ladies…at the least within the motion pictures. however the real lives of many
Nollywood actors and actresses do not reflect what they painting on
monitor.&#a hundred and sixty;The Nation’s Seun Akioye examines the actual lives of the film
stars.

Whoever has seen Kayode Odumosu, known broadly by using his stage
name Pa Kasumu in any of his numerous motion pictures, would imagine the veteran
actor epitomises the most effective life. every now and then, he was the rich and
influential father and at over again, he rose from grass to grace. however
as a rule, he used to be the voice of purpose, wise, a
disciplinarian and a good fellow. Many envied him and concept that Pa
Kasumu, now 60 years previous, must be very rich.

That was Pa Kasumu,
the veteran actor in Nigeria’s make-imagine world known as Nollywood. To
recognize Kayode Odumosu, you’ll have to alight from your day dream of comfy
world of wealth and glamour, the mansion in Lekki, fantastic garments and
simple lifestyles. you’ll have to descend into the regularly bad and
perilous streets of Mushin, a ‘ghetto’ in Lagos where even the common
Nigerian may not ponder as a place of permanent domicile.

Alayaki
boulevard is one of the a whole lot of streets in Mushin. the street begins
from the junction the place Odulami boulevard crosses into it. There are about
70 homes on the street, the majority of them constructed in the ‘face-me-I
face-you’ style which has turn out to be the most popular choice for Lagos
poorest. around 4 pm on Christmas day, a few parties were underway on
Alayaki. Loud fuji tune blared from loud speakers deliberately directed
at the road and passersby.

The inhabitants of this boulevard as
smartly as all of the adjoining ones are tricky-having a look young men and women. As
they danced within the streets to the track from the events, they cursed
each and every other the usage of some of the slangs taken from the songs being relayed.
The previous weren’t spared; some of them engaged the young folks in a game
of wit and argument. This blended with the cacophony of sounds coming
from a few turbines positioned strategically at the back of the rooms,
which full an image of chaos.

the house numbered 9 is a
non-descript storey constructing. but judging from the dilapidated state of
the opposite homes, quantity 9 fares higher and it seems to be cleaner. There
are 12 rooms downstairs and 4 others are joined to the primary house at
the again. There are 10 rooms upstairs; it’s because the primary two
rooms function kitchen. on the again is a one-bed room rental. though
it has its kitchen, the occupants of the room share the toilet and
rest room with other tenants. in this house, tenant number 10 is Kayode
Odumosu, also known as Pa Kasumu.

In October, Pa Kasumu was once in
the information. His household raised an alarm about his failing state of well being
and their incapacity to fund his medical bills. The domestic said he needed
N12million to endure scientific treatment abroad. Failure to raise this
cash would endanger the life of the veteran actor.

Many
Nigerians who heard this had been shocked. however the greatest shock used to be when
the media focused on the home the place the outdated man lives. many do not
keep in mind how this type of man who had lived all his life on the monitor,
bringing pleasure to many homes could be in such terrible state. For them,
N12million is a small deal for Pa Kasumu, but for Kayode Odumosu, it is a
existence-threatening sum.

No Christmas for Pa Kasumu
The
reporter climbed the staircase two at a time and at the prime got here face to
face with a budding early life. On enquiry, he directed the customer to the
closing room by means of the left.

“that’s Pa Kasumu’s room,” he stated.

For
individuals who by no means lived in such apartments, it could be difficult to
appreciate the stipulations under which this veteran actor lives. The
lounge was once crowded, because of the attempting to slot in too many furnishings
in a small house. at the north was once a 14-inch television set, which
stood on a shelf, additionally housing an old VCR video participant and radio– which
from all indications aren’t working.

there were four seats in
the room and on the longest, a toddler slept peacefully oblivious to the
chaos and noise of the environment. A small centre table achieved the
modest furnishing. On the desk was once a black nylon containing bread-the
Agege variant- while behind one of the most seats was once the eating
table moved intently to the wall such that it might probably best accommodate one
chair. The dining table also performed host to a number of books as well as the
microwave.

On the wall were a number of self photographs of Pa Kasumu.
There used to be one with his wife and some other with Chief Lateef Jakande, the
revolutionary 2nd republic governor of Lagos State. every other image
printed Odumosu is a member of the Police community relations Committee
(PCRC).

“Pa Kasumu is on the backroom, that you may watch for him if
you are not in a rush,” his daughter, who obtained the reporter, mentioned.
Twenty minutes later the actor arrived; he appeared to have difficulties
strolling and he may no longer maintain his eyes straight for long.

“You
want to see me? Please look ahead to me, I will have to take my bath,” he
said. the bathtub took a whopping 25 minutes and when he arrived, he had a
white kaftan on and blue slippers. His hair and beard had been finely
combed and he smelled good. He took his seat on some of the single seat
chairs, wiped the water which used to be forming on his brows with his left
hand and apologised for taking goodbye within the bathe.

given that his
illness was disclosed, Pa Kasumu has acquired many guests in this
humble domicile, however on this Christmas day, the previous man was on my own– keep for
a couple of young fans who got here to peer him within the morning. He spent his
Christmas in bed, no feasting, no killing of rooster or any of these
festivities. For the Odumosus, Christmas used to be just every other day.

rich business, bad practitioners
honest
Nollywood actors would admit that the Nigerian film business preceded
the 1992 free up of residing in Bondage by using NEK video hyperlink owned by Kenneth
Nnebue. within the 1960s, 70s and 80s, filmmakers, corresponding to Hubert Ogunde
and Ola Balogun have been concerned with movie manufacturing. but residing in Bondage
set the stage for the blockbuster that’s Nollywood. considering then, film
producers have no longer regarded again, churning out about 2,000 motion pictures a yr. 

In 2008, the United international locations instructional, Scientific and Cultural
enterprise (UNESCO) declared Nigeria’s Nollywood the 2d biggest
movie industry on this planet after India’s Bollywood. The business took
Africa via storm and likewise soon dominated the sector. The Ghanaians, seeing
the large opportunities in Nollywood, joined the bandwagon. these days,
Nollywood is reputed to be worth between $200 and $500 million. proper,
over 21 years, Nollywood had became out a number of millionaires and had
modified the lives of many. but these are primarily the directors and
distributors as a lot of those who act have remained bad and pissed off.
the bulk of those can be considered in the Yoruba portion of Nollywood.

Femi
Brainard, Bayo Bankole, higher known as Alinco, and Wale Adebayo,
better referred to as Sango, are three higher-than-existence Nollywood actors. If
the creative works to their credit are anything else to head by using, they should be
‘swimming in money’. but the reverse is the case as they are barely
managing to live smartly. they are neighbours in Mende, Maryland, Lagos
the place they reside in rented residences. A supply said their properties will not be
one of those modern edifices ceaselessly related to their Maryland
neighbourhood, however old residences in serious need of face-lifts.

but
they are the fortunate ones. a lot of their colleagues cannot even find the money for to
reside in intellectual areas corresponding to Maryland. They live in Lagos suburbs
reminiscent of Alagbado, Ikorodu and Agege. The likes of Babatunde Omidina,
higher often called Baba Suwe, have homes of their own but in Lagos
suburbs. Their properties in Ikorodu don’t measure up to their inputs in
the trade. they have been in the trade for many decades with
little to indicate for it.

The lowly lives of those Nollywood
practitioners are hardly ever identified unless they are plagued with one disease
or the other and need to cry out for monetary lend a hand. That used to be the case
of Ngozi Nwosu, who dazzled within the widespread tv soap opera, Fuji
home of Commotion. for many years, she entertained Nigerians on the
standard exhibit. Then early this yr, news of her disorder filtered in the
media as she begged Nigerians to save lots of her life after she was once diagnosed
with kidney problems. kind-hearted Nigerians raised the N6million needed
for the lifestyles-saving operation in a united kingdom clinic.

She
said of her colleagues: “I don’t have chums within the industry. when you
are rich, they’re your folks, but if you find yourself not, they go away you.
Most of them are a flash within the pan; so, i will be able to’t keep them.”

She
survived the sickness and is now again on the beat. however now not so lucky used to be
prolific actor Enebeli Elebuwa, who died in December 2012 in an Indian
medical institution after he underwent therapy for stroke. for a lot of months, the
actor battled for his existence but used to be at all times hampered by way of money. some of the
most sobering moments of his ordeal was when he used to be proven on a health facility
mattress appealing for funds from variety-hearted Nigerians. It used to be difficult
for many to reconcile this Elebuwa to the one they saw on television
with fast cars, large homes, fat bank bills, pretty ladies and abundant
Moet champagne.

The case of ace Yoruba actor Dento was
coronary heart-wrenching. After many months of being bedridden, he cried out to
Nigerians for a paltry N250, 000. Many Nigerians spoke back with
disbelief firstly however rallied spherical him, but few months into his
therapy, he misplaced the combat.

‘Why we stay poor’
Many
of the actors, particularly these belonging to the Yoruba genre, comfortably
admit that now not all that glitters is gold. Kareem Adepoju, known as Baba
Wande, stated his handiest remorseful about is the terrible remuneration which on a regular basis
followed the laborious work actors put into their work.

“My only
regret is the way we are being treated by means of the marketers. We do loads to
put together a narrative. We search for money to shoot the film and undergo all
types of sufferings at the various areas to shoot a film and at the
finish of it all, attending to the market, you will not be paid; that is my
simplest regret. every so often, I just take a seat back to assume on what can be
carried out as a result of we just toil and we don’t reap the fruit of our toiling.
it’s in reality unhappy.”

Many observers believe Baba Wande over the
remedy regularly meted out to actors, and for the reason that reward for his or her
laborious work is meager, a lot of them live in abject poverty, a pointy
distinction to the roles they painting within the motion pictures. The Nation learnt that
the typical charge of Yoruba actors and actresses ranges between N150,000
and N250,000. and that’s for these on the A-record.

in line with
findings, except for stars equivalent to Adebayo Salami, Funke Akindele, Bukky
Wright and Odunlade Adekola, most other practitioners earn only peanuts
per film. This has made it extremely troublesome for them to live a
reflection of the lives they continue to exist stage in real lifestyles.

Baba
Wande stated: “most of the times, once the ‘area boys’ (side road urchins)
sight you, they are going to rush at you telling you that they wish to ‘devour’ out
of the money you will have made. They always assume that the way we act in
movies is the way in which issues are in real life with us, which isn’t so at
all.”

The lucky few
point out Nollywood actors equivalent to Omotola
Jalade-Ekeinde, Genevieve Nnaji, Mercy Johnson, Richard Mofe-Damijo, who
is now a commissioner in Delta State, Jim Iyke, Desmond Elliot, Kate
Henshaw, Rita Dominic, Ini Edo and some others and now not a couple of in and out
of the trade will agree that these guys are individuals of the elite
membership of Nollywood. Jalade-Ekeinde used to be just lately listed by way of Time as certainly one of
essentially the most influential folks in the world. Nnaji has featured on the Opra
Winfrey express, through which she was once described because the Julia Roberts of
Africa.

These men and women are living in good neigbourhoods corresponding to
Lekki and Omole property. the popularity they have got earned in Nollywood has
additionally brought them cash thru different sources reminiscent of product
endorsement. Like their colleagues in Hollywood, they’re additionally getting
paid for being product ambassadors. they have got turn into manufacturers and the
cash keeps coming from sources rather then appearing.

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