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'I NEVER THOUGHT OF ACTING OR PRODUCING A MOVIE'

Source: nigeriafilms.com

How did you to get into the film industry?

I never thought of acting or producing a movie. It was a friend of mine that convinced me to join the movie business as a producer in 2002. I was into another business that time and my friend advised me to invest in the movie industry.

You never thought of becoming a movie actor, how did you become one?

I started acting when I was shooting my first movie Ruda. The guy who was supposed to act in the movie was not present at the location of the shooting, and after contacts with other actors failed, the director asked me to take the role since I possess acting qualities. I told him I had to seek advice first. My friend and mom encouraged me to go ahead. That was how I started acting.

You have now established yourself as a star in the Hausa film industry, how do you feel?

You know every thing in life we do is God's will. Success or failure always comes from God. So I'm happy for the achievements I have made so far and I thank God for my success

Currently the Hausa film industry is rocked by scandals. What can you say about this?

In every aspect of life, there must be ups and downs, the Hausa film industry has never been in this sort of difficult situation since its creation. But now, there problems due to lack of control of the actors and actresses in the industry. It is really disappointing considering the fact that our role in the society is to show good examples and not the opposite. Though the scandal was done in secret, it became public knowledge. Now you can see that the industry is undergoing a major over hauling whereby everybody interested has to be registered. So I think every career in life has its challenges.

There are insinuations that the Hausa film actors and actresses have always been scandalous.

That is not true. People should know that in every society, there must be good and bad people. So the Hausa film industry should not be an exception. All I know is that it will be difficult to spot an actor or actress at unreasonable places unless they are not popular. I bet you will never see Sani or Ali Nuhu at a club or a place that is not reasonable because all eyes will be on them. So, that an actress or actor is bad does not mean that all are bad.

The industry has taken some major steps concerning the scandal and some of the actors and actresses, including you, have been kicked out of the industry. Why?

I wasn't kicked out, I was accused and suspended. That was what they said.

What really happened?

What happened was that a committee was formed to rectify the issue and the individuals involved in the committee took advantage of that and made it personal. I wasn't in town when it happened; the person that made the announcement was the same person that hired me on contract for advert of Dangote Spaghetti which is on billboards everywhere. But the man has up till now refused to pay me while the company has since released my money. I met him and asked for my pay but he has always given me flimsy excuses. I don't why he included me in the list to destroy my reputation. But I thank God because the committee was dissolved and its chairman, Ibrahim Mandawari, called to say he had no hand in it. From then, I was cleared by the Kano state censorship board.

What measures does the government take to regulate film production?

Part of the measures is that everybody has to be registered afresh and there is an interview and screening for every actor and actress by the Kano state censor shipboard to follow.

How many movies have you produced so far?

I really can't say, but I know they must be more than 200.

What benefit do you derive from the movie business?

Filming is my source of income, so whatever I gain is through movie business.

You mean that you got everything you have owned through movie business?

Of course. As an actor, I get paid. I have also produced a lot of movies which were blockbusters.

Have you ever been invited to feature in the Nollywood movies like some of your colleagues did in the past?

No, I have never been invited, but I believe it is matter of time.

Tell us about your new movie?

My new movie is Almustapha. It is like Eddie Murphy's movie coming to America.