Teaching Comparative Government and Politics

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Reminder: all of Nigeria is not politics

This article came from the Daily Independent in Lagos.

Why I Won't Star in Nollywood -Zebrudaya

"Hardly would the story of comedy in Nigerian Television be told without recalling his comic name. Chika Okpala... played a prominent role in the popular sitcom comedy New Masquerade, a T.V. Series that kept households glued to their television sets in late 1980's.

[At right, Delta state Governor, Dr. Emmanuel Udaughan on the left and Chika Okpala (Zebrudaya) on the right.]

"Even after the series, he remains a brand in the nation's entertainment industry. In this interview with reporter, Ifeoma Meze in his Enugu residence, Okpala talks about his life as a comedian and why he is hardly seen in nollywood movies, among other issues.

"How has life been so far after the Sitcom comedy The Masquerade?

"Life has not been smooth in terms of drama. I have tried my hands in so many other productions but they don't seem to catch the same flavour and attention as Masquerade, may be because of language or style. I cannot really say where the problem is from because I use good actors for the show and still it does not really go like Masquerade...

"Is that why we have not been seeing you in other Nollywood movies?

"Not exactly for that reason, we started Nollywood. We initiated what today is shaped to be Nollywood. What we had in mind was to boost the image of Nigeria, boost the image of the black man especially the Igbo man mannerisms and ways of life. That was what we had in mind by putting up Masquerade. Masquerade is a kind of comic relief that x-rayed the public and character of people in their different performances. The comedy brought them out for people to see the foolishness in man. So it became interesting...

"What is your view on the level entertainment has gotten to in Nigeria?

"It is improving tremendously. Nigeria is beginning to realise that with entertainment they could push education... We call it entertainment education programmes... When instructions are interwoven into entertainment, into comedy or even music, people learn more from it..."

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