ALI NUHU: THE RISE OF A NORTHERN STAR
Inspite of the fierce intimidating presence of actors and actresses from the south,
east and west, ALI NUHU has been holding his own, making an impact in the movie industry and representing the northern axis very well. In this exclusive interview with WWW.NIGERIAFILMS.COM, this actor who featureD in the multiple award winning film Sitanda, talked extensively with us (NFC).
NFC. PLEASE CAN WE MEET YOU?
My name is ALI NUHU. I am based in Kano but an indigience of Gombe State. My father is from Gombe and a politician and my late mother was from Borno.I grew up in Kano, did my primary and secondary education in Kano, and then moved to the University of Jos where I read Geography. I did my Youth Service (NYSC) in Ibadan.
NFC. WHEN DID YOU START ACTING?
Since childhood i have had passion for acting. I was so addicted to soap operas like Behind The Cloud, Mirror in the Sun, etc. While I was in school I saw an audition advert on NTA. I went for it and I scaled through. That was the starting point for me. When I got to Ibadan for my NYSC, I served with people like Francis Duru and the rest, who nurtured me on acting. On completion of my service, I came back to Kano and took up acting as my major profession.
NFC. HOW DID YOU GET THAT ROLE IN SITANDA?
Initially, i was captioned to play the sub lead role, which was later played by Akume Akume. When we started shooting, the guy who was supposed to take the lead couldnt, because there were problems here and there and the director had a deadline to complete the shooting. Eventually, the lead actor was replaced and later on had a problem of branding. He had done something for another brand, so they had to drop him too. Finally, the director had no choice but to look
for another person within. While we were shooting, he was very impressed with the way I was carrying the role I initially was playing, so he said I should move on to play the lead role.
NFC. WHAT WAS YOUR EXPERIENCE LIKE IN SITANDA? WHAT WERE THE CHALLENGES?
Sitanda was very challenging because it was my first major lead role. Also, there were so many veteran actors and actresses and so I felt I needed to work really hard to learn from them and also interpret my role. The characterisation was my first challenge. The brand Amstel Malta wanted somebody who has been beefing up, who has been gymming with muscles and all that, and I wasnt looking like that, and I was wondering how I would do it. The director just told me he wanted me to use my inner strength and interpret the role of someone who believes in love, with fire of love in his eyes, delivery, carriage and whatever...
NFC. HOW MANY AWARDS DID SITANDA WIN?
It won Best Screen play, Best Upcoming Artiste, Best Picture, Best Director.
NFC. NOLLYWOOD HAS MORE ACTORS FROM THE SOUTH, EAST AND WEST OF NIGERIA, HOW DO YOU FEEL BEING ONE OF THE FEW FROM THE NORTH?
Honestly, I must say am grateful to God for His blessings. Am honoured. Initially, i used to feel that I wouldnt have a footing in Nollywood, but the whole story turned out to be different when I came in, because I have people who have encouraged and supported me in the movies industry. I want to also say thanks to all of them. Another good thing with the entertainment world is that it is all about
socialising. When you socialise you get to understand people and get to meet people who will help you grow and believe in your talent.
NFC. WHO ARE YOUR ROLE MODELS IN ACTING?
They are Uncle Olu Jacobs and Omotola Jalade Ekeinde. I have been a very big fan of hers since the days of her first film Mortal Inheritance.
NFC. ADVISE TO ANYONE IN THE NORTH WHO WANTS TO GO INTO ACTING?
Believe in yourself, in your dream. Work hard, be humble to learn and like magic, you will get there.
NFC. ANY WORD FOR YOUR FANS?
Thanks to you all. I am very grateful for your support. God bless you all.
Reporting from Abuja Nigeria