I DON’T WOMANISE –GABOSKY
The name Gabriel Onyi Okoye may not be popular, but Gabosky certainly is. Many people, especially in the Nollywood sector, definitely know who Gabosky is. For the avoidance of doubt, the two names belong to the same person.
Gabosky is not a small fry when it comes to matters concerning film-making. He has, since the advent of Nollywood, made a mark in the movie industry with his blockbuster movies which include Nneka the Pretty Serpent, Battle of Musanga and Beyond the Vow.
As highly rated as he is, Gabosky is not one to be churning out films on a daily basis like some Nigerian film-makers are wont to. He takes his time to do his homework and comes out with what he believes can compete internationally.
Gabosky was with Spectacles recently and let us into his world.
He is known as a film-maker; but interestingly, he did not acquire the know-how from any university. In fact, he studied Botany, which is far from the arts.
He was on his own, doing his own thing; but when Nollywood was born, Gabosky probably saw into the future and realised it was an industry worth going into.
And so, in 1992, he came out with Nneka the Pretty Serpent, which made waves. Since then, Gabosky has never looked back when it comes to the movies.
Since he became a part of the showbiz world, the producer felt he needed to show he is really in that industry, thus he came up with his own trademark. There is no way you will see Gabosky without his identity scarf. There are even whispers here and there that he is a cultist, and that his attire connotes it. Spectacles asked for his explanation on his dress style.
“I like to dress in a unique way. I am in show business, so I have to be creative and colourful in my choice of dressing. This is not a cowboy attire as you think. This mode of dressing is peculiar to Gabosky. I always cover my head with bandana or scarf. That does not mean I am a member of any cult. It is just my style.”
Gabosky would quickly tell whoever cares to listen that he is not a womaniser.
“I can boldly say that I don't womanise. I don't also give roles to any female conditionally. I can proudly confront any actress who alleges sexual harassment in my movie.”
Gabosky boasted that no woman had come to entice him with her body in order to get favours from him. “All these noise about what women do in the industry has not come my way. It may be because of my attitude. I am a no-nonsense man, and I am sure people warn ladies who try to come to me that I am a no-go area. Come to think of it, my wife is my secretary, and she works with me 24 hours a day.” Gabosky's view on the war between movie marketers and producers is noteworthy.
He said, “Movie-making in Nigeria today is an open market for all-comers. This is mainly due to the unregulated environment of the business, which paved the way for an influx of some unscrupulous businessmen operating as movie marketers.”
He, however, commends the position of the government in the matters concerning distribution framework, saying, “The minister of Information, Mr. Frank Nweke Jr., and the Director-General of National and Film Video Censors Board, Mr. Emeka Mba, gave us a listening ear, thus the new distribution framework. It was heralded by all and sundry. It came at a time when newly released movies go to Kwata.”
Explaining the meaning of Kwata, Gabosky described it as a new system of marketing where films are pushed in trolleys or carts just one week after being released.
He said, “This is another confirmation of failure by the marketers, who went as far as banning some artistes from featuring in movies, and refused to market any movie that featured them.” “It was not long after the launch of the distribution framework that marketers contributed money to run a campaign of calumny against the personality of Mba and the entire members of staff of the Censors Board. They even went as far as accusing the DG of trying to sell the entire movie industry.”
But before now, the marketers were the 'King' in the industry. How come it took the producers this long to fight for their rights, Spectacles asked.
“No, no. We took our predicament to the DGs of NFVCB who were there before Emeka Mba. We took it to ministers of Information, from Ofonagoro to Ojo Maduekwe. That was before Nweke and Mba came to our rescue.