Nollywood actor, Kevin Ikeduba, recently shared a video where he spoke passionately about the movie industry in Nigeria. In the video, he said, “I laugh anytime people say social media is full of people living fake lives because the level of fake lives on social media is nothing compared to what exists in the movie industry. If they think I am one of them, it is their opinion. Why can’t we help one another? Change your ways, there is no love in Nollywood.”
His words were misconceived by some people, as they thought he was referring to the lifestyles of some of his colleagues in the industry. However, in an exclusive interview with Saturday Beats, Ikeduba said his message was not directed at any of his colleagues or individuals but at the structure of the industry itself.
“We need to have one body, it may seem difficult because of the different tribes but it can still work. That is why Nigeria is still standing as a country because we are united despite our diversity. If it can happen in Nigeria, then it is possible in Nollywood. If we go to the government as one body, then the government will listen to us. Instead of going in different groups and backstabbing one another,” he said.
The actor stated that he was not the type of person to rant on social media, adding that he was motivated to speak up because of the happenings in the movie industry.
“I am not one who will normally rant on social media; I hold no grudge against any of my colleagues. I was motivated to use the content of my video because I just thought about the happenings in Nollywood. The whole ‘fake life’ issue I talked about has nothing to do with individuals; everyone has the right to live their lives the way they choose to. I was coming from the angle of the industry itself. If we were united and had a strong organisation, it would be better for us. I am bothered about the structure, some people may think it won’t work, but I believe that if it can work for Nigeria, then it can work for Nollywood. It was just my opinion; I didn’t consult anyone before making the video.
“I have a very good career as I am one of the popular actors in Nigeria. The statement I made was not directed at anyone. If anyone thinks I am fake; it is their opinion, it is impossible to satisfy everybody. I was trying to pass a message across to everyone in Nollywood, including me. The information I was trying to pass across was that the segregation in Nollywood was too much. For example, in the US; artistes are united. Their body can write to the government to make a request. Since they are united, the government will listen to them.
“But here in Nigeria, if we need support from the government, and the artistes go in different groups, the government won’t take us seriously. The segregation is there, they see some people as those who their movies do well in the cinema and others as those who make home videos. When actors were born, they were not born with the inscription ‘cinema’, written on their foreheads, we are all actors. We need to be united. Togetherness will take us forward; let’s not pretend that we don’t have problems when we do.
“No one has attacked me; if anyone attacks me, it means the person thinks I am referring to them. No one has attacked me or said anything bad to me. If I have a problem with anyone, I will approach the person and sort things out,” he said.