Most interesting Nollywood actress Aisha Abimbola recently spoke with Lanre Odukoya of Saturday Telegraph about her journey to stardom, family life and other issues.
See interview excerpts:
Did you set out early in life to be an actor?
I would not really say I had wanted this from my childhood, but from a very young age, I knew I loved to act. Let me just put it this way: from my primary school days, I joined a theatre group, dancing troupe, cultural groups and all that. I did it even before I was an actress. I have done jobs as Master of Ceremony on many occasions which I equally started while in school.
I think I grew up being an entertainer because I was already a pain in the neck in my classroom. I made so much noise, disturbed the whole class, cracked one joke or the other, so some of my friends that I had in school were not actually surprised that I am in the industry
How did you start acting professionally?
Actually, I had nursed the ambition of being an actress while I was growing up. As luck would have it, there was a day the crew of Wale Adenuga came to Isolo campus of our school to shoot a scene.
Then I saw Antar Laniyan who was the director of the film. I told him I wanted to act. He was looking at me as somebody who was not serious, but I told him, I meant what I said. Luckily for me somebody who was supposed to act a role of a philanthropist was not around. I was asked to fill the vacancy, and to the surprise of Laniyan, who was the director, I performed excellently well. Ever since, there has not been looking back.
Looking at your journey in the movie industry; what are some of those positive things acting had brought you?
Acting has taken me to places I never imagined. I have met people. I have gone to places and one of the things that happen is when the whole world is on queue to get something and you get there, people would say “oh, you are welcome, it is nice to have you around” it has brought out the success in me. I have always loved to give back to the society. I have seen people that would come to me and say I like you; I just want to be like you. Such things move me, I love such things.
And what about the things that fame has changed about you?
I am a perfectionist when it comes to picking my things; I want to buy my things myself. I like to go to Mile 12 market, get my fresh fruits. I love shopping myself. I would have loved to go to remote areas, get the things I want. I still go to Idumota because I am from there. I go to Oke -Arin. The noise would be much, hoodlums here and there but I still appreciate my fans. You know I can’t do it the way I want to.
I really love to bargain very well and say to myself, okay I have not wasted money but you really can’t do that much now because they would say ” spend this money, a whole you!” It is good, I still go to the market but not the way I would have loved to. I am not the kind of person who hides her feelings, if you have done something wrong and I want to rebuke you right there, I would tell you this is wrong, but then I would just have to look around to see who’s watching and when I see people around sometimes, I just fake a smile and say it is okay. That kind of thing.
If you weren’t an actor, what would you be doing?
May be I would have been a pastor. I would have also been a good MC, which I am doing with my acting job, or I would have been a cook because I read Hotel Management and Catering. I would have been a hotelier or owned a restaurant. But I would still be acting in those jobs.
You said you would have been a pastor, even with your Islamic background?
That is a testimony. My parents were Muslims and even before my dad died, I had been attending church. It was a bit painful at first but he would just not stop me. Then when you have some convictions within you, not that anybody has told you, nobody would stop you. And that was why I got into Christian.