EXCLUSIVE: Definitely I'll marry this year - Mercy Johnson
Mercy Johnson in the spate of 7 years has risen to become Nigeria movie industry's hottest actress. This status was confirmed during City People Entertainment Awards held on Sunday 14th June, 2009 at Valley View Hall, Government House, Abeokuta, Ogun State. Mercy clinched 2 awards; Best Actress, English and Face of Nollywood Awards. http://nollywoodgists.com caught up with Okene, Kogi State born talented actress at Murtala Mohammed Aiport II (MMA2), Ikeja, Lagos while she was on her way to Abuja. During the interview the 2nd born from a family of 7 children she spoke on her rise in Nollywood, her love affair with Ugheli , Delta State born Prince, Ibrahim Dumuje, and other sundry issues.
How have you been coping with different stories about you?
I take it as part of my profession as an actress. Most of those stories I don't know where they come from. And for some stories that are true I don't bother myself I make sure I don't repeat those mistakes. Remember I am a human being that can fall but I put myself together quickly and move on with life.
Despite the fact that you are coming from a very humble background did you plan that you will rise so quickly in the movie industry?
No. My story is a Cinderella story. I never thought it was going to be this big. I never thought I would walk into a hall to receive an award and people will give me standing ovation.
How has that helped you?
It has made me a better person. It has made me realize that there nothing like having faith, believe and self confidence in myself. I confess that at a point in my life I was frustrated. The awards I have received go a long way to show that frustration, smoking and drinking doesn't help. Rather I have been a better person by believing in myself and trying to do the right things.
As a sexy looking actress, how do you cope male admirers and those that have revealed their intention to marry you?
(Laughs)There are lots of them o! But I try as much as possible to draw the line. I have thousands of admirers. Of course I can't date everybody.
Who is your kind of man?
(Sighs relief) It is a difficult question because I am used to everybody saying their dream man must be God-fearing, tall handsome and all sorts. My kind of man must be truthful, a Christian, good-looking and he must be financially okay.
How old are you?
I am in my early 20s.
How far is it true that you have a very serious relationship with Prince Ibrahim Dumuje?
But your are traditionally engaged to him..
Please don't ask me that question.
But you are engaged to him
Are you asking me if am engaged to him? I am an adult.
Are you saying you don't know him?
No comment. I can't talk about that issue.
That means your are ashamed of him
Are you travelling to Abuja to visit him?
Please we are not talking about who am dating. Lets just talk about Mercy Johnson.
How did movie start for you?
I joined the movie industry about 7 years ago. When I finished my secondary school education and failed my University Matriculation Examination. My quest to do something new and the fact that I was tired of sitting down at home pushed me into the movie industry. About this time I saw a movie by Genevieve Nnaji and I said to myself I wanted to be an actress.
Can you remember the first movie you starred in?
The first movie I starred in is entitled "The Maid". It was produced by Kenneth Nnegwe. Since then I have starred in over 50 movies.
What about your education background?
I attended Nigerian Navy Nursery and Primary School and later proceeded to Nigerian Navy Secondary School all in Port Harcourt. I later did a certificate in Computer Studies. I later gained admission to study English at Lagos State University I stopped during my second year. But I have deferred the admission because of my busy schedules on movie locations.
What are your challenges as an actress?
There are so many challenges basically. They include making efforts to improve my skills as an actress, working on movie scripts and other issues. I see everything about the profession as a challenge.
How have your parents reacted to your entry and rise in the movie industry?
My parents and siblings have been very encouraging. I get the biggest encouragement from them.
There are rumours that you are dating popular Lagos transporter, MC Musiliu..
(Cuts in) That is a lie somebody is just trying to pull me down. I don't know the man you are talking about and I have never met him.
What about stories that you are dating De Banj?
I tell you my name is very sweet! I listen to his music but I have never met De Banj personally. God is my witness.
So much about the Prince from Delta State that means when he becomes a king you would also be a queen?
When do you intend to get married?
Definitely this year.
That means your are truly engaged to him..
I don't know leave me alone.
When did you notice you had a break?
It was when my name was everywhere it was around 2006. And since I got City People Awards there have been lots of changes in my life and profession.
You have not spoken about Prince Dumuje?
I want to state categorically that I don't have a boyfriend not to talk of plans to get married. Someone is just out there to destroy my name.Marriage is a good thing but not an issue for now. Please I have to catch the flight. Thank you.
TAIWO OBATUSIN EXCLUSIVE FOR NIGERIAFILMS.COM