Etinosa Idemudia, once a planning engineer with an Engineering degree from Covenant University, is a Nigerian actress, film maker and online sensation. She is best known for her online comedy skits. The soundtrack of her new movie, The Washerman, was performed by Ric Hassani. This was rather shocking as both were rumoured to have a rift between them early this year. In this interview with Chinedu Ibeabuchi, she speaks about her journey into Nollywood and some of the issues rocking the industry. She also clears the air about the rift between her and popular RnB Singer, Ric Hassani
What was growing up like?
I grew up with strict parents who made us (my siblings and I) feel like Kings and Queens. We were also given the best standard of education and we never felt inferior among our peers.
Is acting all you had wanted to do or you just stumbled into it?
I always wanted to be an actress. A performer.
At what age did you start acting and what were your motivating factors?
As a hobby I’ve been acting since I could talk. I started in my mother’s garden, imagining that the plants were my co actors.
What are some of the movies you have featured in and which of them threw you into limelight?
A couple of movies and series, Ajuwaya, Stormy Hearts, Sunshine, Losing Control series, Love in the Wrong Places, Alter Ego, Corper Shun series, Chairman Sitcom (popularly known as Amanda in the sitcom)
You recently produced a movie, tell us about it.
The Washerman is a love story that features a girl who seems happy and popular on the outside but deep down she’s lonely and searching for self-worth, searching for true love and a sense of belonging as they say it is lonely at the top. It is a film that everyone can relate with especially in this world of social media and fake love. When the chips are down who truly got your back? Many at times we focus on the wrong things so we fail to realise all we are searching for is already ours.
The Washerman also features funny moments which we all have experienced once in our life.
The movie was made for a global audience who would be able to see themselves in our well-developed characters, have a hearty laugh and pick a lesson or two.
You seem to be at loggerheads with Ric Hassani.
It was just a rumour. As a matter of fact, we are very good friends. The Washerman movie soundtrack was performed by Ric Hassani, a top RnB singer. Ric was bigger than that and we got together to make magic.
Are you married?
No, I’m not married.
If no, do you cherish marriage or you see it as a distraction? Also, what’s your ideal man?
Marriage is a holy institution made by God. It is never a distraction but a blessing if you marry the right person. My ideal man is one who loves God with all his heart even more than he loves me haha!
Issue of marriage failure is rampant in Nollywood. Do we blame that on the profession or individuals unable to withstand the challenges of marriage?
Marriage failure is everywhere. Let’s not make it a Nollywood thing. Marriage is like a machine. If you try to operate it without the user’s manual from the manufacturer, especially when you are not conversant with its operations, it will fail. You will spoil it. The manufacturer here is God. And the manual is the bible and NOT your friends or your aunty or in-law.
Who is your Nollywood crush and why?
Ik Ogbonna is definitely my crush now. I have dumped Majid. After you see his performance in the Washerman movie even you will fall in love with him. He’s my man crush forever.
Have you been sexually harassed before given a role?
Hian! Sexual wetin? Them no born the producer well. How you carry yourself is how you will be handled. I have had advances made at me but never harassed.
Will you blame producers/directors or the actresses for sexual harassment?
I blame the actresses. Some of them don’t know their worth and place themselves in that position. Director/producer is a human being imperfect in all his ways. If you are receiving advances from a producer that you don’t want, walk away. If he says he won’t cast you, don’t worry yourself, don’t be desperate, there are 99 other producers including female producers looking for your talent, for your value, have some self-respect and damn the harasser. Don’t even put yourself in that position.
What are your most challenging moments in life?
Challenging moments would be the period of getting people to notice you, believe in you, to see your worth amongst thousands of other talented worthy actors, standing out.
Have you been nominated or won any notable award as an actress?
I was nominated for a MAYA award in 2017 (industry’s cynosure) And I won the award for best acting in the Lagos 48 Hours film project (a film making festival) in the same year.
What was your most embarrassing moment on set or in public?
I can’t think of any really. I double as a comedian so I can always spin off potentially embarrassing scenarios.
Is the industry really lucrative? Most actresses living a posh life have been accused of prostitution. Do you share same view or you think otherwise?
I can only speak for myself. Acting for me has been lucrative. As an actress you have access to other lucrative opportunities by virtue of your fame and influence. For example, I am a brand ambassador of the MUV.ng brand, I’m also a brand influencer for a couple other brands. So, yes, acting is lucrative indirectly and directly. Compared to Hollywood of course, it could be better. Thankfully the industry is growing
Aside acting, what else do you do?
Apart from acting, I am an events host, a brand influencer and a content producer (a contentprenuer)