Ibadan-based actress and star of Odale Ore, Ogboju Ode and Oba Kan among others, Toyosi Opeyemi, has expressed her greatest fear and shared her admiration for Nollywood hunks, Odunlade Adekola and Ibrahim Chatta.
In this chat, she also reveals why she has decided not to relocate to Lagos like other Ibadan-based actors are fond of doing. Toyosi, who has logged over 15 years in the motion picture industry, speaks on her new production, Three Souls and lots more. Enjoy it.
Where did you train as an actor. Did you serve tutelage under any theater group?
Yes, I did. I first trained under Alade Aromire of blessed memory. Later, I joined Yomi Duro Ladipo before joining Odebunmi Sulaimon in 2013.
Who are those you look up to in the movie industry?
I have so many fantastic role interpreters that I respect and appreciate their crafts. But I must confess, Toyin Aimaku and Ibrahim Chatta are number one for me. They are just awesome!
Lagos is the main market for the Yoruba movies and most if not all your colleagues in Ibadan have either relocated or about relocating there. Why have you decided to stay back in Ibadan?
Hmmm… maybe, you are right. The truth is that about 70 per cent of actors and actresses began their careers here in Ibadan before moving to Lagos. Ibadan is a great city and I am enjoying my stay here (laughter).
Could you act nude for $5 million?
Wow! $5 million… that is a lot of money o! But I can never act nude for that amount of money? The answer is a no, no. I wouldn’t do it even for a billion dollars. I love what I do and I have a reputation as an African woman and I wouldn’t trade it for anything in this world.
Is your family in support of your career?
Hmmm… It wasn’t easy. At the initial stage, there was a lot of resistance but I stuck to my guns. Now they are in support; they have thrown their full weights behind me (laughter).
What inspired the title of your latest movie, Three Souls and how were you able to fund the production?
Don’t let me leak the secret on this platform but I can assure you that it is one hell of a blockbuster! And guess what, you are going to enjoy it. It is a very interesting movie. I am sure movie buffs will stay glued to their screens while watching it.
Raising money for the movie was tough but the money was from the other businesses I am doing as well as support from family and friends. You know, I run a fashion outfit.
What would you say is your greatest fear as an actress?
I think that should be losing relevance in a dynamic industry like Nollywood.
What do you think government can do to take Nollywood to the next level?
There is a lot government can do but let them start by helping us fight piracy and reducing it to the barest minimum.
Do you have any male crush in the industry?
(Giggles) I am seriously crushing on guess who, Odunlade Adekola. And then, there is also Ibrahim Chatta. They both are doing well and that makes me love them so much.
Could you share your best moment as an actor with us?
It is anytime I am able to deliver my lines very well and watch myself on the screen killing my role; those moments are very special to me.
What other projects should we expect after Three Souls?
I have one in the pipeline and it’s going to be dynamite! It is a mix of tragedy, comedy and crime. It is coming out soon but the title is still not fixed.
What do you have to tell your fans?
Without God and you my fans, I am nothing. Thanks for the love and constant support. Please, keep watching and encouraging my works, and I promise not to disappoint you.