The Nigerian movie industry is indeed growing and accommodating several young talents who are now in competition with others towards carving a niche for themselves in the industry and one of those who has chosen to remain silent but one of the most sought after actresses is actress, Sapphire Adaobi obi.
Sapphire as she is fondly called is currently studying business administration in Enugu State University of Science and Technology (ESUT), has spent seven years in the industry and she recently took Nigeriafilms.com around her world and her foray into the make-believe industry of Nigeria as she struggles as a single mother to make ends meet.
Read excerpts below;
So can we get to know more about you and how acting started for you?
I am from Ojoto in Idemili South LGA of Anambra state. Well I have been acting for more than seven years now. Though I took a break to have my kids from 2011 to 2013 but came back 2014 and I have been on since then. It’s been a battle but I have been through it believing that I will be noticed for my talent one day and it’s all getting better. Currently studying business admin in Enugu State University of Science and Technology (ESUT). I was born 22nd march. I grew a better part of my life in Aba, Abia state, before I came to Lagos in 2007 to act. I attended lots of audition yet no one noticed me. I actually landed the big one in 2009, with Fidelis Duker’s ‘Girls Next Door.’ From the year I started acting up until 2009 it’s been like a joke, no real jobs. It was Fidelis Duker’s ‘Girls Next Door’ that made me feel like I’m getting there. Later then I got married, had two boys and the roles started coming in. Will I say my kids gave me luck or that God has a way of favoring you when you have responsibilities?
Can you mention some of the movies you have featured in?
I have done lots and lots of Nollywood flicks like, Anambra Women, Royal Mission, Amarachi, Juju, Black Forest, Village Captains, Okombo, Stubborn Hunters, Caro The Iron Bender, with the latest flick, Boss is Mine, which is a comedy movie, produced and directed by Okechukwu Oku and will be premiered in London, USA, and Nigeria by January 2016.
With your journey so far in the industry, have you been disturbed by any producer or director to trade anything to get roles?
Well it depends on how you look at it. I’m a very attractive young woman and men generally flock around me to know me more especially with fact that I always seem elusive and distant. People would want to know you more when they like you. It doesn’t necessary mean they want to sleep with you and also, it depends on what you sell. Do you sell s3x or your brain. I’m a smart woman and most men that come around me see me as an asset they can keep as friends. If a producer offers you a role for s3x in exchange, there is something wrong somewhere. I’m an advocate of no s3x for a role.
So, what was your parent’s opinion on your choice of career?
The soil was carefully prepared; the seeds were planted years in advance. When you have a child you know is born with a gift you give her all the support to go into the world and achieve great feats. My parents believed in my talent so much and everything I say in that house is echoed by everyone that’s the power of belief. When you have everyone sees it even your parents.
Now an actress, why the choice of studying business admin and not theatre act?
I’m an entrepreneur; acting in itself is a business. Most people do not look at the business angle to it but I do. Acting and Nollywood itself is dynamic, every course keeps changing. I chose a course that we encapsulate all aspect of my life. Acting is just a part of it and even the act in itself is an entertainment business.
You have tasted affection, what do you think is the major problem faced in more marriage homes that makes the union hit the rocks?
If you have to be in marriage you must play by the rules, it’s that simple. Allow yourself to be hypnotized no allow yourself to be deceived as long as you wanna remain there. There is no make shift, you have to take the decision to love your partner beyond their faults. It’s a decision. A decision based on reality and not emotions. You must have a deep rooted communication, understand yourselves and forgive easily. Enter the person’s spirit and moods all the time and try to decipher how to overcome any temptation that comes. Staying in marriage takes the strong and you have to be really tolerant to stay I must say.
Are you ready to give marriage another chance and can you marry an entertainer?
I can never settle with an entertainer. I will prefer to marry a pastor. Pastors are my crush and I’m currently crushing on Chris Okotie (Laughs).
Are you saying you are ready to marry a pastor if the opportunity comes?
Yes, why not, that’s my fantasy. In a world full of chaos and discontentment, being in the arms of one who loves God and prophesies, will be more than soothing.
But do you think pastors are romantic or are good in bed then the regular guy?
(Laughs) chai, it depends on how you see it. Well that’s suspense for me. I mustn’t tell you if I have had a pastor as a lover.
Now everyone wants to go into acting, do you think the story lines are worth the effort?
Acting is not an all comers thing. There are a few who are born with the talents. That is why lots and lots of people flood in and flood out because they don’t have what it takes. There are a very few of us given the talent yet the untalented no go give you space make you see road act ni (Laughs). The story-line is worth the effort, how more can we promote our tradition and culture if not through films. Hollywood is before us everyday telling us white is better than black. Let’s give it back to them, telling them how well and vast and rich our culture is and that we are not the dunce they think we are. Nollywood gets better everyday trust me.
As an insider why are some of the practitioners having other businesses, does it mean the industry is not paying well?
Humans are multi-tasking and they have the capacity to express themselves in different arts. Remember the parable of the talents. Humans are born with gifts some have more than the rest. So if you can be a jack of all trade master of all why not. Again people have other passions apart from acting. They want to compensate so they take out time to delve into other endeavours while keeping their first love alive.
Some ladies these days go about without bra and somebody revealing cloths, can you step out that way all in the name of fashion?
People will do all sorts to spike up their career. I’m an African woman and I want to brand African. The norms and cultures of the West don’t apply on African soil. We behold them, they project illusion we want to imitate. But you wey wan be like Samantha, you and Samantha na the same thing?
Some actors are now going into movie production; do you have plans of doing same?
That is called giving back to the industry that made you. Most actors don’t do it for gain. They are trying to project good quality works. My intentions are not known in words but actions. If I will ever float my production outfit you will be the first to know.
If you were asked to play a Unclad role or l3sbian role for several millions that can change things around, would you?
What will it change? You never hear say I’m branding like an African woman. Do you want the gods of my ancestors to flog me. I no be oyibo oh