Sultry actress, Biodun Okeowo of ‘Tolani Oshinrin’ fame, is one actress with a rising profile in Nollywood. The hugely talented graduate of Communication Arts from Lagos State University has emerged one of the most-sought-after in the industry for solid interpretation of roles. This much was on display in the movie, entitled ‘Ole oju’, in which she played the role of a prostitute. Aside from the talent, Biodun has put to use her alluring beauty in her works. As one of the new generation actresses cum movie producer, Biodun is gradually writing her name in gold with several hit movies to her credit. These include Oshirin, Okanjua, Oke and Irapada among others. In this interview, Biodun opens up on her life and other sundry issues. Excerpts:
I am Biodun Okeowo, an actress and a single mother of two. I am a native of Ogere-Remo in Ogun State; I am the last born and the only girl in a family of five. I studied Communication Arts at the Lagos State University and I am also a movie producer. I started in 2006.
Growing up was really exciting because I am the only girl and I was really pampered by my parents. It was fun and sometimes I wish I could turn back the hands of time.
At the beginning
I had always known I could act from my childhood days. And I remember we used to have drama groups in primary school, and I really enjoyed every moment of it. I have been acting from childhood, and while growing up, I knew I was going to eventually end up as an actress. I can also sing. I know I can sing because it is a latent talent that I am yet to explore. I used to sing way back in church and I guess that talent is still hidden somewhere in me.
Challenges as an actress
I’d say challenges have been a mixed bag kind of. It has been nice, tough and rough. On the other hand, there are times when you give thanks to God for His mercies.
I can’t precisely say how many movies I have done. But I think I have featured in over 50 movies. I have also produced some movies.
Most tasking movie
I don’t think that I am yet to have that kind of challenge. But the movie that really gave me a tough time was Aso Tuntun. I featured in that movie and I had to run a very long distance, and it was really tough going all the hog because I was plump. Besides that, I am yet to be presented with a very challenging movie role. I can go to any lent to effectively interpret any movie role, so long as my dignity is not compromised. There are ways you can interpret your roles without being dirty or lewd on set. I can interpret my roles diligently, decently and meaningfully.
Weirdest role ever
I think the weirdest role I’ve played should be the role I played in the movie entitled Ole Oju in which I played the role of a prostitute. I played the role the way it was supposed to be played. The movie advised parents against over-indulgence of the girl-child. Some parents, especially mothers, accept money from their daughters without caring to know where the money came from. Parents shouldn’t accept money from their kids when they don’t know the source of livelihood of such children.
Venturing into movie production
My venturing production was by a stroke of fate. I was lucky because someone sponsored my first movie. But since then, I’ve been getting calls for movie roles. I did not just plunge into the industry all of a sudden. I had served in various capacities and in my first year as an actress, I knew I could produce movies. I went through some kind of tutelage on the job before I became a full-fledged actress. In the Yoruba movie setting we usually have various caucuses, and you have to belong to one of them. I learnt a lot being part of such an experience and it has really helped me.
Between acting and production
Both go hand in hand. Acting is not really easy, and that also applies to producing. I do not see either of them to be easy. But it is the passion that keeps you going. I think they are about the same thing, but producing a movie is tougher because of the capital involved.
I have featured in a few soaps, and I see myself as one that can cross-over in the movie industry. But you cannot just get there without being offered a role. To me, featuring in English movies is no big deal. I have featured in a couple of soaps.
Experience as an up and coming actress
It was horrible and I felt the world was coming to an end. I immediately had thoughts like: ‘when am I going to get there?’ and ‘when am I going to be known as an actress?’ At a point, I just wanted all the intimidation by those who consider themselves as senior actresses to stop. But as time went on, I began to get over such thoughts and I really thank God for the position that I am today. It was a really sad experience and it took me closer to God. It also made me work harder.
Most popular movies
I think my most popular movies would be Lagos to Benin and Aso Tuntun.
I’m not married. I am a single mother. I have never been married, but I have lovely kids. I wouldn’t like to go further because my family is my privacy. My kids are doing very well.
Source of inspiration
I get inspired by a good director and producer. If both or one of them is really good, it really brings out the best in my capabilities as an actress. And as a producer, I look out for a good story, a good plot, a good cast and most especially, a good director. When all these are present, I get inspired and ready to work.
I think my ability to interpret roles remains my strongest points. I can easily shed tears when asked to on set. I can also interpret other roles and make it look very real.
My first baby
I got pregnant immediately I got admitted into the university. My parents were surprisingly happy when they heard about my being pregnant. I thought schooling was over for me and I was silently preparing for the wrath of my parents, especially my father. I was not really prepared for it when it came, but my parents supported me all the way. I had my second baby when I was in my final year.
Zeal to succeed
I have always had the zeal to become a success in life. I have always had the determination to survive and not to be left behind by my peers. This has really worked in my favour in my quest for success.