HOW I BECAME THE HOTTEST ACTOR---Odunlade Adekola
When he first hit the industry few years ago, we all thought he was just a flash in the pan. But one thing became obvious in the Yoruba sector of nollywood, the young chap is now out to make a statement that he is no more a naïve kid. And that is the fact that Odunlade Adekola is the most sought-after actor in the industry. No cast seems to be complete without the Abeokuta bred actor. The tall and good looking entertainer who recently added a bundle of joy to his fast growing family is surely an actor with depth and thoroughness and that seems to have been the cutting edge for him so far. The young chap who currently released a new movie spoke to NIGERIAFILMS.COM about his career and his failed dream of becoming a lawyer. Excerpt.
Q: At what point in your life did you realize that acting would be your career?
R: Acting for me started from my childhood days. It started from my church, Christ Apostolic Church (CAC) in Lafenwa, Abeokuta here. Then, whenever they wanted to do society anniversary at the church and they needed side attraction for the anniversary, we used to disturb them, a friend called Tunde and I, would tell them that we could perform as jesters at the anniversary, and they would say no problem. And I would just pick up my pen and would start writing scene 1, scene 2, and scene 3. And funnily enough, I didn't know what scene means then, I was just doing my thing. And whenever they called upon us to perform, we would perform and everyone would laugh. As at then, I was seeing the likes of Ogogo and co, I'm talking about '92,'93,'94, I was seeing them as if I could do better than what they were doing then. When I now came into the industry, and they thought me how to move, turn, do this and that, I said: emi o mope ole to yio!( I never knew it's this difficult). By and large, I can say acting for me started from my childhood days, especially from church.
Q: In the course of your growing up in the industry, what are some of the challenges that came your way?
R: There were a lot of challenges, but the greatest of them all has been the challenge of being at my best at all times. I mean the challenge of going through a script and fashioning a way to interpret the role I'm expected to play in the best possible way. I always think about how best I can deliver any role that is given to me. Let me give you an instance in this regard. Ishola Durojaye,(Alasari) in the production of one of his films then, 'Asiri Gomina Wa', there a lot of criticisms filters that Odun cannot act the role that was given to him properly as the governor in the movie, but he(Alasari) called me aside and said no matter what they say, Odun, you are going to do it. This is your script, go through it and master it. And I was thrown into confusion and a challenge as to how I would not disappoint someone that has placed such enormous confidence in me. But I thank God today, though I have been acting before Asiri Gomina Wa, it was Asiri Gomina Wa that brought me to the spotlight. And there are a lot of other productions that have also added to my relevance in the industry such as Ara Lamo which was produced by Yinka Quadri and my own productions too. I see every production as a new challenge because that might be the production some people would be seeing me in for the first time and that is what would give them the idea of the kind of actor that I am.
Q: How many productions of your own do you have in the market now?
R: I have five or six. I have Farapamo, Emi Ni Ire Kan, Baba Super, Ila Owo, Eje Fun Eje anf Fayebora.
Q: And how did you become the hottest actor in the Yoruba sector of Nollywood today?
R: I can't really answer that. You know I only get invitations to come and act in movies and I would go there and do my job. I don't run after anybody and I want to believe nobody is running after me. Although, a lot people would call me and say if we don't see your face in a movie, we won't buy it and all that. And I would thank them and would also thank God for making me appealing to them. Another thing I always tell them is that; please continue to pray for me because there have been a number of actors before me that are nowhere to be found today and they are still alive. They are just no more marketable. So, I don't know anything about being the hottest actor. What I know is that my God is always there for me.
Q: But there must have been something special about your acting that almost every producer wants you in their productions…
R: Like I told you, I see every movie that I'm partaking in as a challenge. And that is the only thing I know. And two, if you are invited as an actor to any production, you shouldn't see your audience as fools. Deliver your role as if everything is real. You have to convince them as if what they are watching is happening in real life. As if it is reality. And they would be watching and enthralled with your acting. They shouldn't see lapses and that is the secret. If I'm to play a good boy in a movie, I'll play that good boy to the core. And if it's to be a bad boy, I'll do it to the best of my ability. That is all.
Q: So, what are the things acting has done for Odunlade Adekola?
R: I have rest of mind. I am personally okay. I can eat three square meal conveniently. I am comfort. Those are the things acting has done for me.
Q: How do you relate with you female colleagues in the industry.
R: Just as you have seen, Sikiratu Sindodo just came in to greet me by hugging me. And I told her I'm busy, I'll see you later. And that is all.
Q: Are you saying you don't have a personal relationship with any of them?
R: No, no, no. We are all friends. My relationship with them is purely professional.
Q? How about your female fans outside, I mean the overzealous ones that would insist on a date?
R: I love all my female fans. Do you know why? They are the ones that really watch films and make their boyfriends, their husbands, their fathers brothers and other people around them to watch our films by telling the about us. They there is one good actor now called so, so, so, you have to see his new movie. And there and then, they help build our fan base. So, I always appreciate my female fans when they call me to say Odunlade, we are enjoying your movies. And I would also make myself available to those that have business deal for me or want to join acting. There is nothing beyond that.
Q: your saying you have never dated a female fan?
R: No. Never!
Q: If you were not an actor, what would you have been?
R: I would have been a business administrator or a lawyer. That is if my educational background had been very solid. But, to now start pursuing all that now, I think it's too late for me. I have to be realistic because it would take much of my time. At least, as I am now, I can take care of myself and my family.
Q: Can you let us into our background?
R: I attended Saint John RCM primary school in Abeokuta here. Then, to Saint Peter's College, Olomore, Abeokuta. And I am still schooling in one of the University that I don't want to talk about.
Q: Which movie should your fans be expecting from your stable soon?
R: I just finished with is Fayebora and another one is in the pipe.