Listen to article

Victor Osuagwu is an actor and comedian, in this interview with the Theatre Arts graduate of the University of Port Harcourt reveals what has kept him going and more. Enjoy

Whenever you are on the screen the audience can't help but laugh. Where do you get your inspiration from?

I'm a trained Theatre artist, and my role as an artist is to interpret a particular work the way it should be. It must be in the agreement with what my director wants.
If they ask me to play a mad man now, I have to do a research on a mad man, going to the streets to learn something striking about a particular one. So it's for me
to pick the character of the one that I've noticed something striking about.
I can even go very close and watch this particular character and the way he behaves and then transfer that particular character to myself but in all the inspiration comes from God.

But from the way you talk and interact, it seems you are not entirely different from what we see on set.

I don't believe that. Like now, I'm not acting in anyway. Anytime I am trapped in a crowd like this, when I am in the midst of my fans and colleagues like this, I must be able to make them happy because it's what they expect of me.

What distinguishes you from the other comedians in the industry?

Everybody has their own attitude. So, I think I have a particular characteristic that distinguishes me from others. As a comedian, you must have outstanding features. And this helps in selling yourself to your audience. Every comedian
has identifiable features that they are being appreciated for.

So what does the comedy thing mean to you?

My brother, I must confess, it means a whole lot to me. In fact, it is my life.

Is this what you have always wanted to do when you were coming into the system?

To be candid with you, I didn't want to be known as a funny character because there is this thing that goes along with the industry: comedians can easily be stigmatised, so at the initial stage, I didn't want to be a comedian. But you
know, even your friends would tell you "Victor, man, you are a talented comedian". Being a comedian does not mean I can't play other roles, but the truth is that everybody has their own time. My brother, it's really paying off and that is why I keep doing it.

How was it like when you were coming up?

As an artist you have a price to pay, you must pay your dues before you can be recognized. I was actually praying to God that he should give me the strength to carry on, he's the only one that can help anybody to experience a breakthrough in their life. My belief is that every artist must pay their dues, and I paid mine.

How rich is Victor?

I am not complaining.

Share your childhood experience with us.

It was very interesting. I was given an easy hand especially when it came to the choice of careers. Apart from that, my mother is also a funny person, so it was kind of carried over to me. That tells you I'm from a very happy family. They are the kind of people who give you jokes that would make you laugh any day, like some of my works “One Dollar", "Million, Million", "Awillo Sharp Sharp", "Greedy men"
to mention but a few.

Do you see yourself joining the league of stand-up comedians?

These are colleagues, but I'm more into the movie thing. As a comedian, you should be able to do both, though you might not be perfect in both. If you are a very fast person you can make it, because stand up comedy is not easy. For you to make thousands of people laugh is not easy.

How smart are you?

(Laughs ) Smart! Smart get different meaning oo. No be say na smart woman. Abi na the smart to do jibiti? But when you say smart it depends on the character. What we actors do is the interpretation of a particular character the way it is. It depends on what you mean anyway.

What does the future hold for Victor Osuagwu?

The future is too bright and nothing would disrupt it.

Who are the people you respect most in the industry?

Almost all the Nigerian actors. Do you know why? Every artist in Nigeria has the potential of becoming a Hollywood star. I admire everybody from whatever point.

What about people you see as your role models?

When I was actually going through the process of auditioning, my ambition was to meet people like Nkem Owoh and Sam Loco Efe. These are the people I really admire in the industry. Do you know the funny thing? They were the first people I met on set. That was on the set of "AKIDI". And I was so happy meeting them live and we were acting together. I learnt a lot of things from them. They are the MASTERS. Then I have other stupid friends like John Okafor and the rest. And I relax by watching movies, I read as well