Home » Headlines, Nollywood (Film Industry) » Picture: Marriage took me away from Nollywood. Now I’m back – Obey Etuk

Picture: Marriage took me away from Nollywood. Now I’m back – Obey Etuk

For lovers of television drama, Super Story, a particular episode, No Pain,
No Gain remains a blockbuster as they would never forget the scintillating
performance of the central female character, Sandra. In real life, however, the
face behind the Sandra character is Obey Etuk, a graduate of Theatre Arts from
Imo State University. But after her odyssey with the Wale Adenuga’s production
and a couple of other movies, Etuk vanished from the screen only to resurface in
her home state, Akwa Ibom.

The screen diva told Blockbuster that she
followed her lover to his base but came back heartbroken. Finally, the ebony
beauty met the bone of her bone and marriage and motherhood set in. Now Obey
Etuk-Chima, the actress is set to stage a comeback to the profession that gave
her fame and fortune. In her Okota, Lagos residence, she opens up on her French
leave, intrigues in Nollywood and crashed marriages, among others.

On school stage
From primary school, I was
into cultural dances. I was the only one that is into cultural dances before my
last sister joined. My mum would go to the market and buy me ‘ishaka’ and I
would be the only one in my house who would go and dance. On prize giving day,
Parents Teachers’ Association and all those stuffs, I would be part of the group
that would dance. Be it acting, cultural dance, I was always there. I had
something to do with art, it was always inside of me. I entered Federal
Government College, Okigwe and there again I started dancing. I was into group
choral songs, drawing, drama etc. When movies started showing on television, I
was already there. When I started seeing movies, I said I would love to act. I
love Liz Benson so much. When we came for excursion in my third year in the
university, I stopped by and did Camouflage, and a lot of films that I cannot
remember now. I said this is where I belong. I can’t see me doing something

Big break
Before I did Superstory in
2003, I did Power of Love but the soap opera that actually brought me into the
limelight was ‘No Pain, No Gain in ‘Super Story’. I played Sandra and ever since
then Sandra has stuck as my name. That was the big break I had. It was
wonderful, it was awesome. I would say that episode of ‘Superstory’ was the best
and there has not been any better story after that. Then, you find out that
okada riders would pack to watch ‘Superstory’, even nurses and doctors will stop
work to watch ‘Superstory’. When it is 8 pm, everybody would rush home to watch
‘Superstory’ but now it is not like that. That one captivated everybody and
brought us out.

I didn’t leave
the screen. I’m still acting though, I’m trying to make a home first and I’m
done now. I was working with an oil company in Akwa Ibom State when I left. I
left because I wanted a change of environment and see what the other side have
in store for me. I went to work in an oil company, Sentrica; from there I came
back to Lagos. I had to leave my former boyfriend because he cannot stay with
one woman.

Dearth of jobs
I wasn’t getting
jobs. I needed to build a home before any other commitment. I also was into a
relationship. From there I started working. I ended up having a break in that
relationship so I came back to Lagos. If I was in Lagos, it would have been
different because I have my directors like Chico Ejiro, Fidelis Duker, Charles
Novia and some others. But jobs were not coming even now, it is not everybody
that is doing anything because there are no more jobs like before, but I am now
back. I blame the whole situation on management. All these AGN problems like I
want to be president, I don’t want to be president, or you can’t be president
bla, bla, bla. Also, marketers were not bringing out money to make films and
films were not circulating like before because a whole lot of marketers were
into film making, and that made it easy for everybody to be working at a
particular point in time. It was one or two marketers that were bringing out
money to produce movies. You find out that they are bringing their own people
and you find out that it is not everyone that gets the job done. Instead of
staying at a place, you look for something else doing. When they remember you
and call you out for jobs, you continue from where you stopped.


It is not easy at all. I never knew
that this is how it is. Do you know that my children will not allow me to go
out? Let me stand up from here and say I want to step out, they would be
shouting ‘mummy don’t go, remove your slippers, stay now, I will go with you’.
It is not easy especially when my husband is not around. I am like a father, a
mother to them and when you don’t give them what they want, they would be
screaming. Now, I appreciate my mother for giving birth to seven children and
also taking care of us and making sure we all went to school. It is now I know
what motherhood really is.


Big size
I am not a fat person, God just
created me well. I have an exercise machine but when I did it for sometime, my
tummy was paining me, I couldn’t continue. It is not easy.

Different reason
I did a film in Akwa Ibom State
last year, entitled, ‘Different Reason’. And it is just out. I called the
producer recently and she said it is in the market. It is about women with their
different reasons for not getting married. This one doesn’t want to get married
because she is seeing that the husbands of other women are not taking care of
them. The other one is complaining about how the husband is treating her.
Different reasons in a home.


On Nollywood’s crashed marriages
I am actually
thinking of my own marriage. For others, I don’t know what their problems are. I
feel its compatibility problem. The husband needs to understand that the wife is
just an actress and that what she does is just a job. Most of the time, men
don’t really understand what their actress wives do, they feel ‘oh, she is doing
it so real’. You will find out that some people are saying that Nigerian films
are not real, when you now do it real, the mothers of the men that you want to
get married to would say, ‘my son would not marry that woman’ but that is
professionalism. There should be a level of understanding, just like a doctor
sees the bumbum of every woman, sees every thing but does it stop him from being
a doctor? No. Does it make him to start sleeping around? No! You married this
lady as an actress, you need to understand her job, keep her job out of her
life, from her person. She is acting a role. She is depicting a character.
Character is quite different from the person.


Love life
I have the best husband in the world.
I met him here in Lagos. My friends were living here, and I usually come to see
them. Honestly, I didn’t like him at first, I didn’t like his face. But before I
could ‘yab’ him, he has ‘yabbed’ himself first. My husband talks a lot. He
pestered me for a long time, and I that just came out from a broken relationship
didn’t want to have any relationship again. My husband is a wonderful person and
has a good heart. Most of the time, he does the cooking. He goes to the market.
Before I come back from church or outing, he has cooked. Who would not want such
a wonderful man? He is just homely. He loves my family and likewise I love his
family too.


My other business
I am into buying and selling. My
husband brings in clothes for me to sell. I deal in clothes, bags, shoes and all
those adult stuffs. My house was like a warehouse last month. I am waiting for
the Okota road to be completed so I can get a boutique.


Future plan
I am planning to do a movie but
still waiting for the money to come. I want to do good films. You have to
consider the premiere, the stars you want to use, the story, director, and you
want the best. There should be money to get something good. Also, you need a
good script writer among many others.


Advice to upcoming actresses
I am seeing a
whole lot of new faces. Even, we the known faces are not called for jobs like
before. But I am impressed with the new faces. They have to be real. It is not
about studying Theatre Arts now but about you doing the right thing so that it
will be believable in the eyes of the audience.



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Posted by on Jan 21 2012. Filed under Headlines, 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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