Nollywood starlet, Angela Eguavoen, shot into the limelight after she bagged the role of Ivie in ‘Enakhe’, an Africa Magic original crime drama set in modern-day Benin City.
She has also starred in other productions like ‘Inafe’, ‘Still Born’, ‘Dry Tears’, ‘The Clause’, ‘Old New Friend’ among others. In this interview with PREMIUM TIMES, she speaks about her career and industry.
PT: Can you take us through your acting journey?
Angela: I’ve been acting for a while. Altogether, I’ve been acting for about five years. I’ve done a couple of movies. I don’t know if you guys have seen ‘Inafe’. I am one of the lead cast. I’m also part of ‘Blood of Enogie’, which is directed by Charles Uwagbai and I was the main cast there. My character was Osato, ‘the bad Queen’. I had to stop acting at a time because of school and NYSC, so I started fully between 2016 and 2017.
PT: Why acting?
Angela: I’ve always had an interest in acting after watching a couple of people act. I remember when I was watching TV then and my dad would be like, ‘Oh, it’s your mate that is acting there’, ‘You can do it too’. So, that was what ignited my interest in acting and for the fact that I’ve always had the talent in me and I’ll love to develop myself in the craft of acting.
I love acting because it affords me the opportunity to be different people. I get to be a lot of different people at different times. That was what made me love this craft. I really love it.
PT: So what was the experience like when you had to face the camera for the first time?
Angela: It’s nothing new to me because I was already acting in school. I studied English Literature Education, so I already know what it’s about. Going into acting and facing the camera wasn’t really a big deal for me. Fine, I hadn’t honed my acting talent perfectly when I started but I got better with time. I had to improve my craft and this took a lot of personal effort.
PT: Who are some of your role models in the industry?
Angela: The people I watched growing up were Rita Dominic, Omotola Jalade-Ekeinde, Genevieve Nnaji, Mercy Johnson, and some other Nigerian actors. Let me not forget Kate Henshaw.
PT: So, who are the actors you’re dying to work with?
Angela: First on the list is Genevieve. I love Genevieve, I really do love her. Next is Mercy Johnson. I can say Omotola and Rita Dominic will complete my Nigerian list. On the international scene, I have lots of actors that I would love to work and I can’t start mentioning their names.
PT: Is there a role that you probably won’t accept, no matter the amount of money involved?
Angela: There is no role I can’t accept because I just feel that as actors while facing the camera, we can break out and fit into any role given to us. So, I feel that if the role is worth it and the money is worth it too, why not?
PT: Even if it’s a role that involves sex?
Angela: When I get to that bridge, I’ll cross it (laughs)
PT: There’s this notion that Nollywood actresses usually sleep their way to get roles or have a sexual relationship with producers to break even in Nollywood. Is this true?
Angela: As for me, Angela Eguavoen, I’ve never had to sleep with any producer to get my roles. I’ve earned every role that I’ve ever played. There might be some people doing it but I don’t believe it. If you sleep your way through with a director or producer and you’re not a good actor, everyone will know that this one didn’t deserve it or she did ‘runz’ to get to where they are.
So, I have never had to sleep with any producer and I don’t know if that is the common practice. And then, this is what I’ve always held on to, it is not only in this industry that people have to sleep their way through, it is everywhere.
Sex-for-role is just loud in our industry because we’re in the entertainment sector and everybody sees you because you’re in the limelight. If others do it, good for them, but I don’t do it.
PT: So, how do you think social media is impacting Nollywood?
Angela: For actors, I feel social media is your active resume. That is why if you check my social media account, you’ll always see me putting up my work in good pictures. I’m not just all about the glam on my page. I show people that ‘this is what I do’, ‘this is my talent’.
So, show people what you’re capable of doing on your page. Social media has helped me get so many jobs, I cannot deny that. Down to getting roles and getting gigs outside acting, it has been amazing. I am so grateful to the people that created Instagram, Twitter, and every Facebook platform because we’re making money from it.
PT: The government has recently banned Twitter. How is it affecting you as an actress?
Angela: I’m mainly tilted towards Instagram but yeah, Twitter is affecting everyone because there is a show of mine, ‘Inafe’ that is always viewed every day. We have a page, ‘AM Inafe’, where the followers talk about how they feel about the show and the performance. I get the chance to see their thoughts and opinions about my cast and every other character there. Now, I can’t see those. Aside from that, I can’t really say I’m personally affected.
PT: So far, have you experienced any challenging roles so far?
Angela: There have been challenging roles. My role as Queen Osato in Blood of Enogie was very challenging. My role as Ovie in Inafe was challenging too. I got to be different people in different acts, it was 260 episodes, so there is no way I can remain the same person throughout. I went through different experiences in the production, suffering, and all of that. It was really tasking too.
There’s also a film I just finished recently, it’s called ‘Benediction’. It’s not out yet but it will be showing on Rok TV. I had to play the role of a girl suffering from Amnesia. She doesn’t have the ability to make or form new memories. She had an accident six years ago, so every morning when she wakes up, she thinks she’s the girl she was six years ago and she retains that memory. That was really challenging for me to do.
PT: In five or 10 years to come, where do you see yourself?
Angela: (sighs) As an actor and producer, I am aiming towards Hollywood and going higher among the A-list actors. As a producer, I wish to be among one of the biggest producers you can think of and I can also try my hands on directing (chuckles).
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