In recent time, a number of young versatile actors in the nollywood industry are beginning to change the game. They are breaking the rules by setting new standards with their creative works and project. In this new school is Motilola Adekunle. Though she is not new in the game, but she is part of the new movement giving Nollywood a face. In this chat with GberaTV, she talks about her life and career and what her new movie “Dedeegbo” is all about.
GberaTV: Kindly give us an insight into your background
Motilola Adekunle: My name is Motilola Adekunle. I was born into the family of Chief and Mrs. Bamikole Akinlami of Ondo State, Akure to be precise. I started my basic education at Omolere Nursery and Primary School; Akure then proceeded to St Louis Girls Grammar School for my secondary education after which I was admitted into the prestigious Obafemi Awolowo University Ile-ife, to study philosophy and I graduated in 2006. I have 2 sisters. One is broadcaster and the other one a lawyer. Our family is a simple family and love was our watch word. Unfortunately, we lost our father in 1991 and since then it’s been just our mother.
GberaTV: When and how did you start acting? -What prompted you to go into acting?
Motilola Adekunle: To be sincere, I cannot state categorically when I started but I know I started acting a long time ago. I auditioned for a stage play in church at one time and the director choose me. That director was Rogers Ofime. Though it was tough and challenging for me but after that encounter, my love for the arts became intense and strong. I became determined to give it all my best and since then, I have been doing it , trying to outshine my self
GberaTV: What is your inspiration?
Motilola Adekunle: The desire to set a standard is my greatest inspiration. I hope that as an actor, by the time I am old and retired, I would be able to say I have set a standard, I have taught lessons, I have revealed secrets and helped upcoming actors to become better persons in their craft and for generations to come to extol my virtues
GberaTV: What exactly do you hope to achieve with your acting?
Motilola Adekunle: I hope to add value to the lives of people both directly and indirectly. Directly in the sense that some time, we come across our fans who think we are a special kind of people. They have forgotten that we are humans too. So, through direct contact, I hope to help people see that we are all humans and as a result, I hope to inspire them. Indirectly, through my performance in movies at all time, I will give my best to entertain and educate our people. This may appear simple but I must confess, sometimes we have to go extra miles in fitting in into some characters
GberaTV: What have you learnt in the movie industry that you think everyone looking forward to acting should know?
Motilola Adekunle: Patience and humility, there is no place for pride in this profession. Respect must be given to all those whom respect is due. No matter how talented an actor may be, he or she lacks respect and patience, his career will be tainted
GberaTV: What aspect of your background or education has been most helpful to your experience as a young actress?
Motilola Adekunle: I will say it’s the sum total of all the trainings I have acquired that has shaped my person. My family, my school, my experiences have all shaped and helped me in one way or the other
GberaTV: What were the defining moments for you when you started acting?
Motilola Adekunle: As for my defining moments, I have had several but the ones I am most grateful for are the trying times. Every time people try to break my will, I just bounce back stronger.
GberaTV: As an Actress and producer any effect of Recession on you?
Motilola Adekunle: Definitely. The reality of the present day situation is affecting all sectors. What we do on average budget is now double. Cost of production has seriously increased by almost 100%. How about from the angle of our fans? Our marketers? Is it now when they have surplus they would be able to patronize us? So please, government should help do something to curtail the effects on our people
GberaTV: Have you won any awards, honors or special recognition as an individual or on movies you produced?
Motilola Adekunle: The recognition is there but the awards have not started coming in. I am still looking forward to that which I know will happen sooner than later. It’s a tough terrain and the competition is great but I the sky is big enough for birds to fly
GberaTV: What would you describe as your secret formula for success as a movies business entrepreneur?
Motilola Adekunle: If I tell you, it will no longer be a secret would it? It’s also quite terrifying because it’s a huge undertaking, but I want to be a conduit for storytellers
GberaTV: In and outside the movie industry who is/are your mentor (s) and why?
Motilola Adekunle: I don’t have anyone I model my life after. I strongly belief that we all have our paths and run our races differently. Life is a box of games that have several set of rules; your rules might not apply to my game. So what I do is I see a quality in someone and I tap it. For instance, Mr A never gives up, I like that about him, I’d pick that and add it to Mr B’ s courage and that has really helped me. I don’t have any mentors but I learn from everyone
GberaTV: What were your major obstacles during the initial points of acting?
Motilola Adekunle: Balancing my time and attention between two very demanding masters, theater and marriage. It’s a challenge I still face every day but like they say things will sort themselves out
GberaTV: Could you tell us the part of your job you enjoy the most?
Motilola Adekunle: The process that precedes the shoot, the birthing process. I enjoy this part because its brings out the creativeness in me. It makes me thing out of the box
GberaTV: What the effect of New Media on Nollywood?
Motilola Adekunle: New media has helped us in a big way, we have been able to spread our tentacles to the outside world but it’s also our undoing. We have let too many people into our lives; we no longer have boundaries or respect. That is really sad because our culture, our tradition, our core values were built on values, respecting each other’s boundaries and privacy but with the new media, all of that is gone with the wind. This is not cool
GberaTV: What are your plans for the future?
Motilola Adekunle: Plans, I’d just let that sort itself out. I intend to keep pressing forward that’s just the main thing
GberaTV: What kind of legacy do you want to leave?
Motilola Adekunle: A woman who spoke the truth, who wore her heart on her sleeves, a woman who used her voice and platform to say things even the world was afraid to hear. I want to be a legend… So help me God
GberaTV: Can you act nude?
Motilola Adekunle: No I can’t. I have my boundaries and my limitations. Besides, our religious and cultural values do not permit that
GberaTV: Do you have any advice for young/ aspiring actors/actresses?
Motilola Adekunle: Advice? I would say “Farabale” which means be patient. With patience, everything will be sorted
GberaTV: How has Nollywood and acting generally improved your life and that of your fans?
Motilola Adekunle: Nollywood has really made me a better person in the sense that it has exposed me to the dynamics of life. Through my involvement in movies, I have come to know the pains of people and what they go through. It has also taught me lessons and gave me wisdom on how to handle life challenges. As for my fans, I would not want to speak for them, but I know they too must have learnt something
GberaTV: What was your childhood ambition?
Motilola Adekunle: All I wanted to be was a Lawyer but as they say, man proposes, God disposes.
GberaTV: What movie will you say brought you to limelight?
Motilola Adekunle: I would say Imo (Knowledge). That was the movie that announced me
GberaTV: Tell us some of the movie you featured in / Produce
Motilola Adekunle: I produced Ariwo Oja, Mirage and most recently Dedeegbo but I have featured in several movies like Imo, Onikaluku, Apo and a number of movies
GberaTV: What inspired your movie ‘dedeegbo’?
Motilola Adekunle: I would say it’s the futility of life, the facade we struggle so much to hold on to that we sometimes forget it’s a passing phase. We embrace birth, age, birthdays, weddings and pretend not to know that death in itself is a part of life.
GberaTV: What project are you working on presently?
Motilola Adekunle: Projects….? It’s all in the works…not letting the cat out of the bag just yet.
GberaTV: Do you have your own clique in the industry?
Motilola Adekunle: I don’t but I’m with the baddest crew…team Afod 100%
GberaTV: What do you do when you are not working?
Motilola Adekunle: Play with my daughter. She is my companion
GberaTV: What’s the funniest thing that ever happened to you?
Motilola Adekunle: Funniest? It depends on what’s your definition of funny but I remember one instance. When I was in labour, passing through pains and all of that. Suddenly, my ability to speak Yoruba disappeared, I was just speaking English, and the nurses started calling me a Professor, started using big vocabulary.
GberaTV: Tell us one interesting thing that many people don’t know about you?
Motilola Adekunle: I am very very clingy…….I love attention, I crave it and I demand it at times…its childish I know but that’s just me
GberaTV: Tell us about your marriage and what your advice for single ladies out there
Motilola Adekunle: God is the pillar of my marriage. Though we are not perfect but we are trying to make things work. As for single ladies, find yourself before you find a man or before a man finds you
GberaTV: Thank you for your time ma.
Motilola Adekunle: You are welcome
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