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I’ve Acted With Nollywood Stars Of My Dream

09 Mar 2013

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Juliet Ibrahim

27-year-old Ghanaian actress, model and singer, Juliet Ibrahim is obviously beautiful and intelligent. This much reflects in her many works these past few years in Nigeria and Ghana. This lady of immense charm speaks to LANRE ODUKOYA about her career, childhood and sundry matters

HOW I BECAME A CELEBRITY…
My journey into the celebrity world started after I won a beauty    pageant and was crowned Miss Ghana Institute of Languages, with a modeling career as a runway and editorial model; modeling for the big brands in Ghana- Royal Dennis, B exotic, Joyce Ababio, KarimIsaka, Art Michael, Dark and lovely, Woodin and GTP fabric. I also featured in countless commercials, notably Wrangler Jeans and Veltins beer. I was featured in the Ghanaian musical group VIP’s music video ‘Me ne me jole’. I officially entered the Ghanaian movie industry in 2005, and I have often said I had waited for the right time to do so. I made my film debut in Crime to Christ, 2007 co-starring Majid Michel one of Ghana’s brightest male actors. After much consideration from the angle of the storyline, I decided to star in my first lead role in a Nollywood movie Yankee Boys’ where I played another bad girl role. Nollywood gradually became a homestead for me as I moved on from one movie set to the other, exhibiting a great and versatile acting prowess till date. Due to the fact that I was raised in different countries, I am multilingual and speak French, Spanish as well as English.

MY FIRST MOVIE EARNING…
My first movie payment was very reasonable because I didn’t desperately go looking for a movie role; I was invited for the audition after I won the beauty pageant and I got the lead role in the movie. I had my beauty salon and modeling agency that I was running back then so they saw that I was well to do and wasn’t begging for roles.

WHAT I SHARE WITH  OMOTOLA JOLADE…
Unfortunately, I haven’t had a face-to-face meeting with Omosexy. I love her acting very much. She is one of my Nollywood role models. I was called up to act with her in 2010 but I was heavily pregnant at that time. Interestingly so, we are both married to pilots, we sing, act and model.

KIM KARDASHIAN’S VISIT TO NIGERIA…
What I said is; it’s time we started appreciating our very own African talents during events we organize here. I don’t see the reason why Kim K was paid so much for a 45 seconds speech at the said event in Lagos. I believe it was a waste of money when any African celebrity could have been paid to spend the same 45 seconds on stage for much lesser. Even if Kim K was used to sell out the show, 45 seconds is too short a time for her to show up on the stage, that’s my point of view. Some people refused to understand these points and argued it out with me and it brought up the fact where I said, I am 100 times hotter than Kim K and I could have done a better and longer job than what she did on stage. Did you watch what she stood on stage to talk about? Come on, that was a huge joke.

MY PACT WITH YEMI BLAQ…
Yemi is a good friend of mine. We actually worked together for the first time in Abuja in a movie called ‘Complicated’ and we got along very well. So, when I decided to produce my first personal movie, I called Yemi up and he gladly accepted the role in my movie. He played the role of my husband in the movie titled ‘Number One Fan’.

HOW I JUGGLE ROLES AS A WIFE, MOTHER, ACTRESS AND ENTERPRENEUR…
By the grace of God I am doing just fine in handling all of the above. I have my mother to also thank because she helps take care of my son when I am busy with work. I also have a very understanding family so I am grateful.

BAD BLOOD AMONG GHANAIAN ACTRESSES…
I can only speak for myself. I do not keep grudges or have issues with any of my colleagues. We are all acquaintances and I have a good working relationship with them all. I am about to organize the second All female celebrity soccer match in Ghana and over 50 Ghanaian celebrities will be playing soccer for The Juliet Ibrahim foundation this May. We are very supportive of each other. That’s one thing I am certain of.

MY NOLLYWOOD STORY…
I was called for my first Nollywood movie role after I became well known in Ghana. It was for P. Collins Productions and my first Nollywood movie was ‘Cash Adventure’ which starred Nkem Owoh and the second was Yankee Boys. I had no problems because I was working with professionals and they didn’t see me begging for roles in Ghana. How you present yourself to the world is how the world will accept you.

MY HUSBAND AND MY ROMANTIC MOVIE ROLES…
I was acting before we got married so I believe he got used to my career over the years. He understands it’s my career so it’s not an issue at home.

CONTRASTING GHOLLYWOOD AND NOLLYWOOD…
One can’t compare both industries now, because both industries have gotten to a stage where we ought to be commended and not compared. I just finished my first movie titled ‘Number One Fan’ and I worked with some Nigerian colleagues. The scriptwriter is a Nigerian called Patrick Nnamani, Nigerian director Moses Inwang and AY the comedian, Yemi Blaq and Kc Ejelonu. We are all professionals and we made sure we worked together to bring out a great movie at the end of the day.

ABOUT MY TV SHOW…
My television show is in the pipeline, I’ll be releasing the promo cut sometime this March for public viewing. I am going to use my television show as a platform for creating job opportunities for the youth every now and again. The television show has nothing to do with my everyday life or family life, it’s strictly from a different angle altogether and I promise to fill you in about it in our next exclusive interview.

NOLLYWOOD HEAVYWHEIGHTS I’VE DREAMED TO ACT WITH..
I think I have acted with almost all the big names I had always wanted to act with and the only amazing actors left will be Clarion Chukwura Peters, Liz Benson and Pete Edochie. I do have it in mind to work with them in my personal movie projects to come.

HAVING A CRUSH ON AN ACTOR…
I have a crush on Michael Ealy. I think he is cute and there’s something about his acting that keeps one glued to the screen. He is married though and so am I. I wouldn’t mind acting a movie with him someday.

WHAT I WOULD DO DIFFERENTLY IN LIFE…
I wouldn’t change a single thing because I believe every circumstance that occurred in my life has been a lesson that led me to being who I am today. From the war experiences, trials and temptations, the hustles and every single situation I have been through in life were all meant to be a part of my life journey.

MY FASHION AND STYLE…
I usually just wear what I am comfortable in, but can never forget to show off my curves. I am a big fan of African/traditional fabrics hence it inspires me to always style up something extraordinary in my African prints to rock at events. If we don’t promote our African prints, we will sit by and watch the western world do that for us in the near future. My styles are inspired by the kind of events I attend. If it’s music, I go for casual, sexy and sometimes crazy. If it’s movie awards, I go for the elegant and sophisticated look. It all varies. But on a normal day, I will always be seen rocking jeans.

MOVIE ROLES I WOULD DECLINE…
I’m not sure there are roles there to decline because as an actor you need to play and interpret any and every role to the best of your ability.

MY DREAMS AND HOW FAR I’VE COME…
I have set out some plans for myself as an actor and I am working towards achieving most, one of which was to produce my own movies. I have recently ended shoot for my first movie and intend to premiere it this May at the cinemas. I am also focusing on my music career, so I will be shooting a musical video for my first single ‘Celebrate’ which features Ghanaian dancehall artiste, Jupita.

MY CHILDHOOD MEMORIES…
I have a mixture of memories from my childhood. I barely talk about my childhood because some memories are not what I will like to sit and think about. I have experienced a series of wars in 3 different countries at a very tender age; Liberia, Lebanon and Ivory Coast. I did have happy moments whilst growing up, but the rest was spent running at the age of 8 years with your younger siblings and parents fleeing for safety. I could go on and on about my childhood stories but I someday intend to make a movie out of it for everyone out there to have an insight of my true life story.

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