Petite comic star, Chinedu Ikedieze played host to the editor, FOLORUNSHO HAMSAT, some days back. In the encounter, the MFR award holder, who is currently working on a project in the United States of America, remained frank with responses to issues that touch on his profession, personal life and others. Excerpt…
People consider you more a comic than a general actor, which is understandable; do you agree with that, if not, why?
I actually did not start as a comic actor. I started as a general actor with a natural comic instinct. I got that break to explore the real me in ‘Aki Na Ukwa’ and since then I’ve done more comic characters than I’ve done as a general actor. Though, I still see myself as both.
There was this speculation that you and your film partner, Paw-Paw had misunderstanding. Was that true, and what is the current state of you guys’ friendship?
He’s my best friend. People sometimes create unnecessary rumours to get attention.
Share with us one particular moment when you felt like quitting acting.
No moment like that. Acting is my life!
At what stage did you break into the limelight acting and who really was responsible?
Aki Na Ukwa. God was responsible. Aside Him, Amayo Uzo Philips, who was the writer and director and KasVid, the executive producer of ‘Aki Na Ukwa’ were responsible. I’m indebted to them for believing in me and Osita. They gave us a chance to experiment and it worked like magic. The artistic chemistry was there and we implored every bit of it and the result was amazing.
When was your most interesting period as an actor?
Every time I go on set is my interesting time.
You have made your marks in Nollywood, do you nurse a dream to feature in Hollywood?
I’m already doing that. I co-produced a movie called ‘Take The Spotlight’ which featured Hollywood celebrities like Lyn Whitfield, Allan Morshower etc. that was shot in Dallas and directed by my co-producer, Drew Madueke. There’s still a lot in the pipeline.
What was the prank a stubborn fan has ever played on you, given your receptive nature?
I cannot recall any.
Have you ever lost your cool at a fan, and for what?
That was then, I’m more mature now. It’s a matter of understanding the ethics of human psychology. Once you do that, you would find it difficult to get angry at people.
How has love treated you, considering your status as a celebrity?
I have always been treated fine. I get love from everywhere.
How do you unwind when you feel like doing it to the fullest?
I get my friends together with my family. I don’t unwind alone (general laughter).
What is that funny secret fans haven’t known about you?
My being me, Chinedu Ikedieze, MFR. That is the big secret.
Which of the movies you have ever featured in would you rate your top 4?
‘Aki The Blind’ produced by D Kross Movies and directed by Ikechukwu Onyeka
Is there anything you feel is still missing in life despite having the fame and the money?
That should be personal. Thanks.
Do you find the social media empowering, particularly to the progress of Nollywood, or you have your reservations about it?
The social media has become a new medium of communication that the industry, no matter your status, can easily get in touch with. It’s a platform that can redefine the entertainment industry, as it were, if we fail to harness it.
You and Paw-Paw, are loved for your pranks in movies; is that in-built or something of a strategy to please the scripts?
That’s why we are actors. As a good actor, you are expected to use every tool that’s available to you for maximum benefit of the target audience.
What lessons have you learned about women?
(Grins)… I just handle women with care. Please, that’s all!
How do you love to spend your holiday, when and where?
I love spending it abroad. I take a trip. I go on vacation to any country of my choice, with my family.
What is the next big project from you fans should be looking out for in 2016?
Aside ‘The Johnsons’, a family drama which currently airs on Africa Magic ‘Urban Channel 151’, on Mondays, I’m also currently working on a personal project. You will be informed about this very soon.
Many would say that showbiz celebrities enjoy showing off their wealth; what is your reaction to that?
It’s an individual trait. We all have a life to live. Enjoy it while it lasts. Go crazy! Do whatever! But one thing we should not forget is that, we are role models to millions of fans.
At what point do you feel fulfilled?
I feel fulfilled whenever my fans appreciate what I do; it makes me not only happy but fulfilled.