Kenny Saint Best (KSB), formerly known as Kenny Saint Brown is a popular gospel artiste in Nigeria who has been in the music industry for a long time. Her family is also synonymous to the entertainment industry in Nigeria.
One of her siblings, Kenny Ogungbe, also known as Baba Keke, is one of the few people who revolutionized the booming music industry Nigeria that has become a pride of the country. He co-founded Primetime Africa with his partner and friend, Dayo Adeneye, well known as D-One, and both of them can never been forgotten when the history of the entertainment sector is mentioned in Nigeria.
Though many still don’t regard KSB as a gospel artiste, but she is still a singer, who wields much influence in the industry courtesy of her brother’s influence. She has even produced a protégé, Essence, who was once her backup singer.
Speaking with First Weekly in an interview some months ago, the former wife of the defunct member of Remedies Music Group, Eddy Montona disclosed that the problem with the Nigerian music industry is lack of leadership.
She was particular about the nudity being promoted in some music videos, one of which made her raised an alarm over Wande Coal’s music video in 2012, which was later banned from being played on television.
KSB, however queried the regulatory body for banning songs and music videos after they might have become national anthems and charged them to wake up from their slumber.
“It seems they (regulatory bodies) are sleeping. It is until everybody has seen it (music videos promoting nudity) that they now ban such. In Nollywood, some movies are termed ‘not to be broadcast’, but in music, there is nothing like such,” KSB fumed.
“You know the problem with the music industry,?” she asked, “there is no trade union or leadership,” she answered herself. She added further that, “so, it is a free-for-all industry and nobody is saying anything about it.”
She also said that, “I have been here for a long time and legacies have been laid. If anybody feels that they can just come and mess things up, some of us will talk and kick against it. We didn’t inherit this (nudity) from Onyeka Onwenu, Sunny Okunsun, Ebenezer Obey, even Fela did not bring nudity outside the Kalakuta Republic.”
KSB has released many singles and has done collabos with top artistes like Terry G, the late DaGrin and many others.
I Don’t Care About Nigeria’s Situations Because I’m Living Large—Rukky Sandra
Make the roll call of controversial Nollywood stars, one sure name that will not be missing, apart from those of Tonto Dikeh, Emeka Ike, Cossy Orjiakor, Jim Iyke, is Rukky Sanda. The Lagos State-born actress-cum-producer, who reportedly shortened her name, Rukayat, to Rukky, is not new to controversies just like her pal, Tonto.
Even though she is not one of the busiest actresses in the Nigerian movie industry or her own movie known to be a blockbuster, she is one of the celebrities in the country who live in one of the highbrow areas in Lagos and also cruise around with expensive ‘mobile homes’, which some of the veterans in the industry can’t boast of.
Though Nigerians go through many challenges caused by poor leadership, which has continually failed to make life worth living well for its citizens, the entertainment industry has provided a respite for Nigerians. Little wonder most Nigerians care much about those who entertain them and give them something to cheer about.
That could explain the criticism some Nigerian celebrities faced during the January 2012 ‘Occupy Nigeria Protest,’ when some of them threw their weights behind the Federal Government in removing fuel subsidy.
Speaking with First Weekly in an interview, when asked what she would like God to do for the country if given the opportunity by the Creator to make such request, Rukky Sanda stated that she will ask God to make Nigeria fair, adding that she isn’t complaining about the situation of the country since she is living large.
According to her, “I pray that the country would be fair.” When asked to explain what she meant by Nigeria being fair, Rukky explained that, “I can’t complain because I have a good life, I am lucky [for that] and I thank God [for that also], but I pray that the less privileged ones get what they want.”
Lagos AGN Faction Boss, Don Pedro, Inaugurates AGN Police
The Don Pedro Agabi-led facion of the Lagos State chapter of the Actors Guild of Nigeria (AGN) has inaugurated a task force to checkmate pseudo and quark movie production outfits, which have been operating in the state.
The task force was named ‘AGN Police’ and it is the first of its kind to be set up in the movie industry in Nigeria. The ‘AGN Police’ was set up at the monthly general meeting of the guild held in Surulere, Lagos few weekends ago.
The 10-man unit was sworn-in in by the guild in the presence of the Managing Director of the Lagos State Film and Video Censors Board, Mr Dele Balogun.
Speaking at the event, the factional boss of AGN Lagos, Don Pedro, said, “With this unveiling today, we are sending a strong warning to production houses that have made it a trade to dupe unsuspecting actors and actresses. The AGN Police outfit will be well equipped and empowered to flush out these quark production houses from Lagos State.”
On his part, Balogun praised the initiative of the ‘AGN Police’ brought about by Don Pedro, stating that it is in line with the plan of the government to sanitize Lagos State. He promised to partner with them in their quest to make Lagos a true mega city.
According to him, “This is a wonderful initiative indeed, for you to practice as a doctor, you must belong to the Nigerian Medical Association, invariably, for you to be an actor, you should register with AGN Lagos Chapter.”
“I think the message is clear and Don Pedro Aganbi and his team are on course and they need every support,” Balogun added.
The 10-man AGN Police unit is currently under-going training and re-orientation geared towards meeting the task ahead.
Earlier, the Lagos State Films and Video Censors Board paid a courtesy visit to AGN Lagos office, where they had a deliberation with the state executive council and some industry stakeholders on issues that affect the movie industry in Lagos State.
Producers Hate Me Because I Don’t Allow Them Sleep With Upcoming Actresses—Emeka Ike
Emeka Ike, though controversial to many people, is seen by few others as a very blunt and fearless actor. He is one of the actors who have been in the movie industry in Nigeria for many years and still wield much influence.
Few years ago, he was engaged in a tough power tussle with the immediate past president of the Actors Guild of Nigeria (AGN), Segun Arinze, who handed over to the incumbent, Ibinabo Fiberesima. Even now that the tenure of Arinze has expired, Emeka is still fighting to unseat Ibinabo, who he claimed shouldn’t have be sworn in as President of the widely recognized actors’ body in Nigeria as he said that Segun shouldn’t have conducted an election, which eventually produced Ibinabo as winner.
Apart from acting, Emeka is into some other things. The only winner of the Gulder Ultimate Search Celebrity Edition runs a school in highbrow Magodo Estate, Lagos. The school, according to reports, is co-managed by his German wife.
Recently, the graduate of Yaba College of Technology, Lagos was made an ambassador of the Federal Government’s Rhythm N Play along with Ice Prince and Victor Moses. Emeka runs an NGO and also has a business in Benin Republic.
Some months ago, there were reports that Emeka Ike has vowed to stop acting, which gave him fame and fortune.
The actor has disclosed to First Weekly why he’s hated by some movie producers and directors in the industry. He said that he is hated for his decision not to allow up and coming actresses to be used for sex-for-movie role in the film industry in Nigeria.
“If you knock at their office and you can’t sleep with them, you can’t act. Is it fair to tell a girl that ‘if I don’t sleep with you, you won’t get my favour?’ if God gives us strict condition, where would we be today?” The actor asked.
He added that, “this situation is a general norm. Ask the smallest artiste about my position on the situation. I have stopped productions severally because of this (sexual harassment). That’s why they sometimes get issues with me.”
Emeka narrated an ugly incident he witnessed on a movie set, he said, “There was a day I saw a girl crying in a corner on a movie set, her name is Esther. She is a make-up artiste now because she has stopped acting for them (emphasis).
“I approached her and asked her why she was crying. She was lamenting like a girl who just lost her mother. She told me that ‘look at the girl going with my script, that ugly animal. The producer said if I can’t sleep with him, I can’t get the script.’
“She mentioned the name of the person. So, because she can’t sleep with the man, she has to be marginalized, ha! I have something against that. If a girl wants to sleep with you because you are a star or because she likes you, so be it. Don’t arm-twist someone, that is rape. Abroad, they will go to jail for even suggesting it to her.
“Most of my colleagues feel wearing dark shades and going to red carpets makes you be in touch, you need to be responsible and responsive to the young people you have exposed to acting. You need to stand up and fight for them. Right now, they are interested in acting and there is no place to go. They go to Ajao and they tell them, open your legs, is that what we made the industry for?
“Go to Enugu and ask of Esther, the make-up artiste. She will tell you about this story. That is why they don’t like me,” he said.
BON Announces Gbenga Adeyinka 1st, Wana Udobang As Awards Hosts
The duo of Gbenga Adeyinka 1st and Wana Udobang has been announced as the hosts of the glamorous Best of Nollywood (BON) awards to be held in Asaba, the Delta State capital, in November 2013.
The organizers of the event, in a statement made available to First Weekly, disclosed that they trust on the expertise of the duo to give the best to the ceremony, which aims at breaking the world records on the longest red carpet.
“The organisers of BON Award 2013 is proud to announce Gbenga Adeyinka 1st and Wanawana to anchor this year’s awards, which is slated to hold in Asaba, Delta State on the 9th of November 2013 at The Dome,” the statement said.
It added that, “as the longest running reward platform for movie stars in Nigeria, our mission is to celebrate the true stars of Nollywood, a night of glitz and glamour, where world class entertainment will be performed and rewarded.”
Gbenga Adeyinka 1st has hosted many high profile events both in and outside the country. He is one of the most successful comedians in Nigeria. Gbenga is a graduate of English Language from the University of Lagos. His presentation of English Language blended with the three major Nigerian Languages and a working knowledge of three other international languages stand him out among many.
On her part, Wana, a seasoned broadcaster with Inspiration FM, Lagos, is a graduate of Creative Arts with a first class degree in Journalism. She once worked in the UK as a freelance features producer for the BBC World Service and Resonance FM (London’s only art radio station).
She honed her skills as a researcher, whilst working for some of Britain’s biggest independent production houses. She is a keen performance poet, public speaker in the areas of gender advocacy and youth mentorship, a short fiction writer and an alumnus of Farafina Creative Writers Workshop.
Okoroji Charges Lawmakers On Govt-Owned Stations
Members of the National and State Houses of Assembly have been charged to make sure government –owned media houses respect Nigerian artistes. This call was made by the Chairman of the Copyright Society of Nigeria (COSON), Tony Okoroji at an event held few days ago in Lagos.
Speaking further, Okoroji said this was necessary because of the way some government-owned radio and television stations treat Nigerian artistes. He also advised the lawmaker to make state-owned media houses to ensure compliance and respect for the Nigerian copyright laws.
Okoroji noted that the significant success recorded by COSON after its approval in 2010 cannot be fully comprehended if proper efforts were not made to ensure that music users across the country respect copyright laws.
“Today, we call on the National Assembly to ensure that forthwith, clear provisions are made in the budgets of all Federal Government-owned broadcast stations for the payment of copyright royalties. We refuse to accept a situation, where the stations continue with the open stealing of the intellectual property of innocent creative people simply because there is no budget for the payment for the key raw materials they deploy in their operations.”
“Any scheme by which the stations are required to pay royalties from their meagre or non-existent ‘internally generated revenue’ is a joke and simply unacceptable to us,” he declared.
Okoroji noted that most of the stations were set up for political reasons. In his words, “They have very little chance of generating proper revenue. Meanwhile, they sustain their operations by freely using the intellectual property of innocent citizens, who have invested in creativity with hard earned money.”
Why It Took Long To Release Eletan On DVD—Lilian Bach Opens Up
Sometimes in 2010 sexy and light-skinned Nollywood actress, Lilian Bach swept many off their feet, when she ventured into the Yoruba film industry. Before then, not many were aware of the fact that the half-caste role-interpreter had a Yoruba blood in her.
Some of her fans thought she was from Rivers or Bayelsa State. The likes of Ben Bruce family, Monalisa Chinda, Ibinabo Fiberesima and others testify to this assertion.
So, seeing someone like Lilian Bach, who has such skin pigment, speaking the Yoruba Language in a movie, was like seen Barack Obama or Pierce Morgan speaking the Yoruba Language.
Three years after the film hit the cinemas, Lilian Bach finally decided to release the flick, ‘Eletan,’ on DVD. The movie was released in August.
Speaking in an interview on the reason behind the delay, the talented actress disclosed that she had to make sure that she released a quality work for her fans. She also stated why she delved into the Yoruba film industry.
Why did you decide to produce a Yoruba movie
The inspiration of ‘Eletan’ came in Yoruba and I am a Yoruba woman. I have done a couple of Yoruba movies in the past. It was also inspired by certain Yoruba actors like Mr Latin, Muyiwa Adegoke (Londoner), Kareem Adepoju (Baba Wande), Ayo Badmus, Yemi Blaq etc.
What was the budget of ‘Eletan’
Eletan is a multi-million naira budget movie.
What were the challenges of producing ‘Eletan’
‘Eletan’ had few challenges that we were thankfully able to surmount. For example, getting the casts on location and the production process took a long time.
Why did it take so long to release it on DVD
The delay was caused by post-production. We were conscious of quality because we didn’t want to compromise the standard of our production. We kept working on our production until we were satisfied with the end product.
Why did you choose to release it on DVD
The best option for the production was DVD. The movie is a multi-million naira budget movie and it was shot with state-of-the-art equipment. Releasing it on anything lesser than DVD would have been degrading for the movie.
What is your next project
I have another movie, which is yet to be released and it is titled; NASEEB. NASSEB was partly shot in Nigeria and in India. It will be out soon, but for now it’s ‘Eletan’ that is in the market.
Rita Dominic, Mercy Johnson, Funke Akindele, Bimbo Akintola, Uche Jombo Jostle For NMA
The race to become the winner of the glamorous title of Lead Actress in Nollywood Movies Awards (NMA) is getting heated up since the nominees’ were finally unveiled at an event held in Lagos. The event, which debuted in 2012 in Lagos at the Civic Centre, Lekki, has now gained respect in the film industry.
The selection of the nominees for the 2013 edition of NMA took place on Saturday, September 7, 2013, at the African Bar of Oriental Hotel, Lekki, Lagos. It was attended by several top Nollywood stars.
In the Best Lead Actress category, Rita Dominic (The Meeting), Nse Ikpe-Etim (Mr & Mrs), Mercy Johnson (Dumebi), Funke Akindele (Maami), Bimbo Akintola (HoodRush) and Uche Jombo (Mrs Somebody) will jostle for the position, while in the Best Lead Actor section, Bayo Alawiye (The Gods are Still Not to Blame), Gabriel Afolayan (First Cause), Iyke Adiele (Broken), OC Ukeje (HoodRush), Moses Armstrong (Udeme Mmi) and Wale Ojo (Phone Swap) have a battle royale contest to do.
HoodRush, Journey to Self, The Meeting, Phone Swap, Udeme Mmi and Mrs Somebody are fighting to win the Best Movie award in the category, while Mildred Okwo (The Meeting), Lancelot Imasuen (Udeme Mmi), Dimeji Ajibola (HoodRush), Kunle Afolayan (Phone Swap) and Tope Oshin Ogun (Journey to Self) will have to wait till the event day to know who truly is the Best Director among them.
Uche Jombo, Omotola Jalade-Ekeinde, Stella Damasus, Kate Henshaw, Julius Agwu and many others were at the first edition of the event.
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