ollywood actress, Fisayo Ajisola, has combined beauty and brains to build a career for herself. In this interview with SAMUEL ABULUDE, the graduate of Biochemistry speaks on her career and choice of man.
Which productions have you been involved in?
I have acted in several drama series like
This Life, Jenifa’s Diary, Nectar, Shadows, Burning Spear, Circle of Interest, The Story of Us and others.
How are you planning to take the industry by storm?
Yes, I made that promise and I meant it. I will start by saying that the Lord has been good to me since the beginning of the year and has been helping me to achieve all the goals I have set before me. Recently, I featured in Jenifa’s Diary series and my face was also on Chapeau Wine. I want to concentrate more on my acting career. The era of combining academics with shuttling movie locations is over. Now that I am done with my first degree, I have the ample time to pursue my dream; I am ready for the game and confident that it is my time to shine. I am not new in the industry, it is just that I have not been able to give it enough time because of school. This is because I didn’t want to drop out of school. I am a very organised person and I know how to manage my time and life.
Tell us more about your modelling career, especially your deal with the wine company.
The truth is that I have not been taking modelling seriously because I have been doing more of acting as well as singing, but acting has been my predominant talent. I wasn’t conscious of the wine deal until last September. My agent informed me that some of his clients who went through my pictures would love to have a deal with us. So, I had to do more photo shoots and they were dazed with what they saw. That was what led to the discovery.
How was the experience like featuring in Jenifa’s Diary?
The experience was awesome. I honoured the invitation for the casting and I believe I did well. Funke Akindele who is the brain behind the project liked it. I am pleased with my role and I will do it over and over again. Also, playing a role in ‘This Life’ drama series was wonderful, especially given the fact that I played a different role; a negative role from my real person. I had to act like a difficult person who makes life miserable for people around her. I was glad I interpreted the role very well.
How has your life been since you took up acting as a full time career?
Acting has been fun. For me, acting is all I want to do, though it may look somehow that I went to study Biochemistry at the university, I still had a strong urge to go back to acting because it is one thing I feel very easy to do. I find it easy to interact and interpret my roles, though it comes with a lot of stress to try to convince people that you can actually interpret a particular role and at the same time going for casting and auditions. The good part of it is that I am enjoying the roles I have been playing and it is satisfying.
Which role will you always want to take at any given time?
One has to be versatile as an actor, so I take whatever role I am given so far it is to pass a message across. Personally, I like playing crazy and sexy roles. It is really nice for me playing these roles. I played a sexy role in one of the soaps titled “Story of Us” that is on air currently. Mind you, one doesn’t have to be naked to play sexy roles. The Nigerian mentality towards movie production or films is really affecting the progress of the industry. There are principles you need to adopt if you want to interpret a character very well. Your mind, head and every part of your body must speak the character. It doesn’t mean you have to go naked before you can act a sexy role. I can dress well and still interpret a sexy role. It depends on how you carry yourself in front of your audience.
Would you take a script to perform nude from a movie producer?
It is funny because I have always thought of this. I don’t know why people take nudity as the peak of immorality. What would you say about murder cases and other crazy things that people do? But people say all sorts when they hear about sex or condemn people for taking nude pictures. People have forgotten that we are presenting a character. We are in a make-believe industry and we have to make things professional. This is the only way we can grow and show our expertise. If I have to take a script that I have to go nude, it is not me but the character I am playing. For example, if I am to play the role of a prostitute and I have to go nude to do it, then why not? It is not as if I would have to stand and strip naked in front of the camera. No, it is about motion. It is not for fun, but to define a particular character. So, I will find it pleasurable to act that character in such a way that I could pass my message across if that is what it will take to convince people about the character. Acting is not about things happening real. You are the character and you have to make it real when the director says ‘action.’ So, I see no big deal in it if my character has to go to through the process to showcase being nude. I don’t know why people in this part of the world react aggressively or negatively when they hear nudity. We should always have a way to go about it to balance culture and the reality of life.
Has acting been profitable?
Well, for now acting hasn’t put food on my table. Work is still in progress though. One can’t just solely depend on acting for financial breakthrough. I’m into other profitable businesses.
What brought about the idea of the NGO you run?
To be candid, I see that as my baby and also part of my responsibility to give back to the society, especially the needy. I thank God that we have been able to affect lives positively with this initiative for some years now. This is a vision God gave to me to impact into lives, especially to the young generation and I was able to gather people of this like mind to make it a reality. And by God’s grace we have been able to use this NGO, the Jewel Empowerment Foundation (JEF) to orientate school leavers, underprivileged, orphans and people living with HIV/AIDS, among others. Our core target are the children and the youth. We also organise entrepreneurship programmes for undergraduates. I would say it is basically for the youth. I am confident that we have a lot of things in stock for this year. One of the reasons this vision is maintained it to sensitise people, because I believe that one of the biggest problems of Nigerians is our poor orientation and mentality about life, especially in the area of low self-esteem, corruption and the common mentality of the Nigerian youth on how to make quick money. Nobody is ready to think rightly and learn how to be successful in life. The NGO is to impact and teach people to lead a normal and good life. I believe that the best way to help any child is to start training such child at a very young age. We help a child to get it right from the tender age so as to be useful to himself or herself and to the nation at large.
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