Home » Arts/Culture & Entertainment, Headlines, National Politics, Nollywood (Film Industry) » (Picture):I didn’t kiss Ramsey Noah in Guilty Pleasures, the character I played did –Nse Etim, actress

(Picture):I didn’t kiss Ramsey Noah in Guilty Pleasures, the character I played did –Nse Etim, actress

 

Nse Ikpe Etim, a Nollywood actress, quit the industry some years ago, but staged a comeback awhile back, starring in Reloaded, a movie that has brought her again to prominence. She tells ’NONYE BEN-NWANKWO why she left the industry and how it has been since she returned You used to be in the movie industry, but you left after sometime. What happened?

I went in search of self and I wasn’t ready for fame. I thought I was a bit too young. I went into other industries like the banking industry.

But don’t you think the banking industry is better than the movie industry financially?

If it is now, you cannot compare. Oh yes, you earn a salary at the end of every month in the banking sector, but if I do two movies in one month, I would earn more than the salary. I’m okay here. I’m doing what I love. Banking was too stifling. The money was good, the salary would always come. But here, if you don’t work, money will not come. It is even worse when you don’t have any endorsement. Hunger will deal with you.

You said you left initially because you weren’t ready for fame. Are you now ready for fame and the responsibilities that come with it?

It doesn’t necessarily mean that I’m ready for fame. It means that whatever comes with it, I can handle it.

Even when the media feast on you?

Especially when people like you deal with us. I have had my share of bad press and I took it well.

Why did you choose acting?

I can’t say I started acting from my mother’s womb; I didn’t know myself then. Oh yes, I have a degree in Theatre Arts, but acting wasn’t exactly what I thought I would do. I had people I looked up to. But I didn’t think the Nigerian movie industry was going to be this good.

So when did you decide to become a proper actress?

I think it was after the movie, Reloaded.

But you were acting before then.

I hadn’t decided what I wanted.

So, how did your family take it?

I come from an understanding family. If I should be asked where I got this talent from, I would say I got it from my mother. She was extremely funny. There are things I have borrowed from her. Initially, she couldn’t understand why I chose this profession. But over time, she accepted it the way mothers accept it when their kids go into other professions. Remember the football craze when every parent wanted their son to be a footballer?

I think this is another craze.

Do we see you leaving the industry again?

A true artiste never really leaves. If I wasn’t a true artiste, I wouldn’t have come back. No matter how far you are, you will still be within the confines of entertainment.

You and Emem Isong are very good friends. If it weren’t for your relationship with her, do you think she would have featured you in her movie, Reloaded?

In all fairness to Emem, I think she still would have featured me. She kept saying she saw me in that character. I wasn’t a streamline actor at that time. I was very mad at her for even thinking I could do it. But look at where it has got me. People have now noticed me. But I don’t think I have played a very challenging role yet.

What kind of challenge do you want?

I want anything that will take me outside my comfort zone. I want something that will challenge me physically, mentally and even psychologically.

But some people might think what you played in Reloaded is the real you…

As an actress, you leave yourself at home and you pick up a character and play it. That is the truth. Even if an atom of you will get into the role, it might just be your smile. I had to be Omoze. She is a new person to me. I lived her life in Reloaded.

But in reality, are you the kind of girl who would monitor her man’s every move?

Since you are married, why don’t you answer that question? Every one has a breaking point. No matter how perfect you are, your breaking point should be that point you choose to stop seeing him as a husband. You might react the way the character Omoze did or you give him a silent treatment or you may decide to use The Bible. That is what a lot of women in Nigeria use when their husbands engage in extra-marital affairs. They pray and read The Bible. I can’t say I can’t behave like Omoze because we all have our breaking point. I’ve not got to that bridge yet; I’m not married yet so when I get to that bridge, I will cross it.

There was a time it was rumoured you were dating Fred Amata.

When such stories are being said about me, it hurts because I’m human. But then, is Fred not a fine guy?

Do you understand? People have life outside the screen; they have families and such stories could upset them. But then, we have let people into our lives, we should expect a lot of things. I will live my life as I want it to be seen and I hope it will be comfortable for us to occupy the world with it. Scandals will come. It is painful, but I will not bear grudges. If you act with somebody in a movie, people will think something is going on between the two of you. They will forget that you are just playing a role. You just have to be normal.

How come you do only Emem Isong movies? Are other producers not giving you scripts?

I ask them the question even as you are asking me. It is not as if I reject their scripts. I’ve worked for a couple of producers and I’ve done few movies in Asaba as well. The thing is, the pride of an actor starts from the script. If you get a good script, you will be willing to do it. I’m still waiting for the scripts anyway.

You did something in Harvard some time ago.

Oh yes. It was the Nigerian Student Association, Harvard University, that asked me to come and speak on the Globalisation of Nollywood; it was particularly to mark the Nigeria’s 50th Independence. It was an interesting thing to be on the panel with such great people as Chris Anyanwu and Shuaibu Husseini. It was a great thing.

You didn’t really answer me when I asked if you dated Fred Amata.

Oh, you have gone back to that question again? I didn’t date him. I’m not dating him. I’ve been close to the family for years. Jeta Amata is one of my best friends. I’m close to their family. I don’t know how that story came up; I don’t know why it came up. Well, thank God they even linked me up with a fine guy.

If you are not dating Fred, who are you dating?

I would have told you if I was dating anybody.

So, you mean you don’t have a boyfriend?

I’m not seeing anybody right now. I don’t know why. It hasn’t yet happened. I’m waiting for it to happen.

Some men are scared of actresses. It is widely believed that actresses don’t stay in their marriages…

It is a misconception. You can have marital problems as a medical doctor. You can have marital problems as a lawyer or even as a journalist. It is not the profession that causes it. Yes, we’re exposed to a lot of things, but then when you get married to the right person, your friend, somebody who knows you and has chosen to spend the rest of his life with you, there will not be a problem.

We hear there is this ‘beef’ going on among actresses in Nollywood…

I’m a tomboy, I can’t fight. I’m friends with everybody. I become friends with everybody I meet.

What is your vision?

I want to be that role model that parents can say to their kids, ‘If you want to be an actress, be like Nse.’ It will give me joy to see children wanting to be like me not because of notoriety but because I’m able to give them a good word; when I act they can take something out of it.

But do you have a role model in your industry?

I respect my colleagues a lot. I’ve people I respect more than the others. To say who my role model is, I’ve not been able to move it away from my mother. If I could be half the woman she is, I will be happy with myself.

Is there a particular role you wouldn’t want to play?

As an actor, I shouldn’t choose. This is my profession.

So, you are comfortable with the role you played in Guilty Pleasures?

Why not? I didn’t go nude in the movie anyway. I had a bath, it was necessary for the scene. If it’s necessary in the story, you will do it.

Even kissing Majid passionately as you did in the movie?

The character I played kissed in Guilty Pleasures; it wasn’t me. You cannot tell me that I have kissed Majid. It was Liz, the character I played, that kissed the character he played in Guilty Pleasures. Ramsey Noah or Majid and I can sit down and talk. We have never kissed before. When we become other people, we have kissed. The people you see in the movies are not us.

Do you think your man will like it seeing you kiss in movies like you did in Guilty Pleasures?

Some men will not be able to handle it. I know that.

So, what if your man tells you to quit?

You know they say love can make you go crazy. Let us not ask what love will make us do. I don’t know where love will drag me. Love can drag you to a man who will love you to jump up and down in the movies. But love can also drag you to a man who will say he will keep you to himself. For now, I’m that actress who is still doing her job.

As a tomboy, do you even have dresses?

I’ve started having dresses. I’m so comfortable in my jeans. You can run when you want. You can even go to an office wearing jeans. You will never look under dressed or naked in jeans.

But people always feel that tomboys are lesbians.

-Punch

Do men wear skirt? We like tags in Nigeria. It has nothing to do with that. I’m not bothered about being judged because I dress in a certain manner. If I haven’t judged you, you don’t have to judge me. If I come out wearing mini skirt now, same people will say I want to pursue men.

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Posted by on Feb 5 2011. Filed under Arts/Culture & Entertainment, Headlines, National Politics, Nollywood (Film Industry). You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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