The Ogun state born diva, who has been in the industry since 2008 is famous with her intriguing roles in Yoruba movies.
In a brief chat recently, the sunny smiled actress who recently claimed to be single and ‘not attached’, stated that piracy is killing the industry and viewers are not so friendly with the acting personalities.
In her words: “there is hardly nothing we want to do that we don’t have to pay people for and pirate are killing us”
Speaking further, Allwell admitted that nollywood celebrities are not as rich as people may think. According to her, “everyone wants to eat part of the cake” with assumptions that they are millionaires.
Following the success of ‘Adeda’, Allwell is currently working on a new project, which will be rolling out in 2015.
VIDEO: Watch ADEDA Produced by Allwell Ademola
The OAU graduate is also the grand daughter of the first chief justice of Nigeria, Late (Chief) Adetokunbo Ademola and a great grand daughter of Alake II of Egbaland.
As the grand daughter of Nigeria’s first Chief Justice (Justice Adetokunbo Ademola), Allwell Ademola is one actress has always had to contend with the Herculean task of stepping into her father’s shoes.
The fact that she hails from a family line that many regard as an integral part of Nigeria’s history doesn’t ease the task of living up to the bar of expectations that more than a few people would gladly place on her steps.
As an actress, she has over the years been able to carve a niche for herself and her involvement in major filming engagements has seen her gradually climb towards the zenith of her career.
Interestingly, given the razzmatazz and glamour that greets the life of an average actress, quite a number of fans often hold the erroneous impression that the prevalence of indecency illegitimate wealth, morally deviant practices and many more cannot be restricted to the halls of fiction alone.
In a strong reaction to this notion, Ademola affirmed that despite the fact that event and happenings in the movie-making industry make it a tough task to refute such claims, not all actors, actresses, directors, producers and other players in the industry compromise their personal and moral principles.
Using her situation as a case in reference, she revealed that she plans to keep her matrimonial bed holy till her wedding night; a submission millions would disagree with.
The chubby actress however maintains that she would stand firm in her resolve to abstain from getting intimate with the special man till her wedding night.
Meanwhile, in a previous chat with Simply Samad, Ademola had disclosed that contrary to expectations, her grand father’s name has not brought her any added advantage over others. Rather, she has had to dwell on her talent and hard work.
The chubby film maker also delved into details of her involvement with Saidi Balogun and Kate Henshaw in the popular movie, ‘Eti Keta (Third Party).’
In The Interview Below She Spoke About some of the problems stalling the progress of the Nigerian entertainment industry and proffered a possible way out.
I wrote the script of Saidi Balogun’s ‘Eti Keta (Third Party);’ the one with Kate Henshaw. I wrote the script and I was privileged to be the dialogue director. I also did the subtitle of Eti Keta.
Let’s go soft a bit. I know for a fact that you’re not married except it was a secret wedding
I’m not married o. I’m still single; still very single.
Are you taking applications?
No! I’m not taking applications o but I won’t want to go too deep into details. I’m single and in a relationship. My guy is not around and that has not been interesting. Sincerely because I can get to talk to him when I want to but I can’t get to see him when I want to. I can’t get to be free with him when I feel like it.
At least you can still cope withoutintimacy
(Laughs out loud) Even if we’re in the rainy season, I’m a Christian, a born again Christian. I want to keep my matrimonial bed holy till my wedding night… and my guy understands.
Hmmm… That sounds like the second coming of Christ
(Laughs out loud for a very long time)
I know that apart from him, every now and then, you get admirers and guy who want to date you. How do you handle them when they come around?
Before you came in, I was talking to my friend and I made her understand that I respect my relationships. I don’t joke with my relationships. I respect people a lot because I want to get that in return. That’s why I don’t take people for granted. No matter who you are; no matter how big or small you are, I respect it a lot. So, my male fans, I have my ways of dealing with them. I try to be friendly and if at the end of the day, you become my friend. You’ll definitely become my friend. I have my ways of dealing with that.
Your ways… Allwell ways
It has to be like that because if care is not taken, I have a name to protect. My father’s name is very important to me as long as I’m not married yet. It’s very important to me. My father is in his 70s. I wouldn’t want a situation where he reads something in the papers and pass out. So, I’m careful about the things I do. I’m careful about the places I go, the things I do, the things I wear; I’m just careful.
Have you ever had any scandal or read anything in the papers that broke your heart?
Yes! Just one! Two years ago, I went for a programme and we were all asked to dress in Ankara. When I got there, I was well dressed; in skirt and blouse. Two weeks later, I saw it in the papers; The SUN newspapers to be precise and my picture was in it. They wrote right under my picture that my boobs are out and that I should get a NAFDAC number and that I’m harassing them and bla bla bla. I was in church when people began calling me to tell me about what they had seen. At the end of the day, I went to get the paper and when I saw the picture, I felt disappointed. For crying out loud, I was wearing an Ankara and it wasn’t as bad as they said it was. I made them understand that I have it and I can’t hide it. Even if I’m putting on a T-shirt, if care is not taken, if I sit, you’ll still see. It’s not as if I want it exposed. What I saw in the picture was not done deliberately and it wasn’t as if it was that flaunted. I think they were just trying to get at me. When I saw it, I felt very bad. If I had really exposed it and they did that, I would have understood. They really got at me.
What is the most romantic that has ever happened to you?
Ah! This one might take a while o. The most romantic thing that someone has ever done to me…
Or is it that you’re not a romantic person?
(Laughs out very hard) Oh my God! Let me see. When I was younger, I used to fantasise about my dream husband coming in a BMW, with an engagement ring and his car keys. I had been dreaming of something cute. My guy then knew I like ice cream though I’ve dropped it because it’s not helping me. He took me out, bought me ice cream. He said he had a gift for me. Before then, I had always been telling about romantic wedding proposals. I told him about a script I wrote where a guy wanted to propose to a lady (I was indirectly passing a message) and dropped the ring in the ice cream and the lady eventually saw the ring while taking the ide cream. It was on my birthday and when he said he had a gift for me, I assumed he was going to propose and that I would end up jumping on him and hugging him fiercely. I started rushing the ice cream thinking the ring was sitting at the bottom of the ice cream cup. At the end of the day, it wasn’t there. When I got home, he gave me a muffin and as I sliced the muffin, I saw the ring. It was so romantic with candles, roses and everything. The most romantic thing I think I’ve done is kissing in public (laughs). I’m a very shy person so I did that.
How would you describe yourself?
I’m Allwell Adetokunbo Ademola. I am a very young lady. I am from a family of three. I am an actress. I don’t have a brother. To some extent, I miss the fact that I don’t have a brother. Sometimes, when I talk with my friends and they talk about their brothers and I usually don’t have anything to say. I used to have one but he’s late. I however have a niece and nephew through him. I’m an actress, a singer, a script writer, director and musician. I have a band.
Most times, when individuals have talents that conflict like this, one of these talents gets subsumed under another.
Well, I would say singing is my first love. I’ve been doing that since I was a little girl. I’ve also been acting since I was like 5 years old. I started with the popular tales by Moonlight and Animal Games. They were all NTA programmes.
Back then, acting was something I was doing unconsciously. They would come to my school and say they found me very active. They said I was hyper and they believed I could become very good at it. Singing on the other hand started with the church choirs. No matter which church I attended, I was always found myself I the choir so I consider singing to be a part of me. Today, I tell people I’m into general showbiz. In addition to the things I do, I’m also a model. The likes of Eddie Murphy, Jamie Fox, Whitney Houston, Beyonce, Jennifer Lopez and many others sing and act and they cope just fine. It’s a matter of knowing what you’re doing and creating enough time for them. My pastor says if you do the right thing at the right time, you’ve committed a time sin. It’s about planning.
Given the fact that your grand dad was Nigeria’s first Chief Justice, one would expect that his name would have opened quite a number pf doors for. Is this so?
I would say no with a capital ‘N.’
I find that incredible
That’s the truth of the matter. Firstly, there are Ademolas and there are Ademolas. I was talking to sister in my church; Felicia Ademola. She is married to an Ademola and when she told me, I told her that the name makes her my sister-in-law and she looked puzzled and told me her husband was from Oshogbo while I am from Abeokuta. The Ademola in Abeokuta is very popular because he’s a king and the son was the first Chief Justice of the federation. The grandson (my dad’s alder brother) is also a justice right now. The Ademola from Abeokuta even has a street on Victoria Island in Lagos. I also have a friend, Funmilayo who is also married to an Ademola who is from Ondo State. It was later on when I was talking to my dad that he told me that it’s the same Ademola. He told me that the king once had a problem with Funmilayo Ransome Kuti and went on exile. It was when he went on exile that he touched those states where the Ademolas are now found. Due to his large appetite for women, he kept donating his wild seeds to the women there. The women in Ondo and Oshogbo believe they are concubines to a king and believe their children are supposed to be princes and princesses. It is because of that they claim to be from the royal family from Osun and Oshogbo. Now, becaue there are so many Ademolas everywhere, when I introduce myself, the name doesn’t register immediately. Of course, I can’t go around saying: “I’m Allwell Adetokunbo Ademola; the grand daughter of Nigeria’s first Chief Justice… I’m Allwell Adetokunbo Ademola; the grand daughter of Nigeria’s first Chief Justice…” For how long will I keep introducing myself like that? I even have a cousin in the industry; Muyiwa Ademola. He is from Abeokuta. I’m sure the name has not opened any door for him as well because the name is everywhere and I can’t keep blowing my trumpet.
What are some of the problems you see in the Nigerian movie industry?
Firstly, we have internal problems in the industry. Decorum is very important. Sometimes, the way we carry ourselves matters a lot. I think to some extent, that is affecting us. For instance, you’re going to bid for a N500 million contract and you’re hopping a bike or wearing a flip flop or wearing shorts and a T-shirt. Naturally, whoever wants to give you the contract is not blind. He/she would look before leaping. You are addressed the way you are dressed. If you don’t carry yourself well, no one will respect you. A lot of us believe in being ourselves but that does not apply to all situations. The society will not permit that.
Secondly, the government is not helping. I was with a friend who asked me when the movie was shot and I told her 5 months ago. She asked me how many days we spent on location and I told her six days. She began saying: “Haaa! Indians would not do that. Hollywood would not do that…” I told them that it was wrong to compare us with those people. Those industries have the backing of the government. Here, it’s a pity. It’s every man for himself. You source for the funds and still pay the marketer yet you expect me to spend a month or a year on location. Who is going to pay for that? It’s not possible. You just have to make do with what you have. Perhaps, the government does not see the job as a profession. We know the assistance they give to the banks and medical sectors.
When I initially told my dad about what I wanted to do, he felt very bad about it. Even when I was in school, some people who knew me expected me to be studying Law. Such professions are noble and respected. It’s partly because of how the government is carrying it. We still have people who consider actor and actresses as people who are not serious. The government needs to wake up to this responsibility.
There also appears to be a clear segregation between Yoruba and English-speaking movies. Why can’t both speak with one voice?
The truth of the matter is that Yoruba, Hausa, Igbo and English are all Nollywood in as much as we’re Nigerians. We’re speaking Yoruba because we’re trying to project our culture and make people understand that we have a rich language and culture. It’s beautiful and we’re trying to project it to the outside world. Even most of the Igbo movies have actors expressing themselves in English and Igbos constitutes a majority of actors in the English-speaking movies. Nigerians also have a problem. They believe that once you cannot speak English, you have a problem. We all understand that it’s our lingua franca and it’s good but it’s bad when you make whoever can’t speak it inferior. English-speaking actors are placed above the Yoruba-speaking ones and that’s not good. It has even gone so far that even the audience believes the English-speaking films are from Nollywood while the Yoruba-speaking ones are not Nollywood (ANTP). The truth is that ANTP, Actors Guild of Nigeria and NANTAP are all under Nollywood. Actors Guild is the English-speaking actor and actresses, ANTP are the Yoruba-speaking actors and actresses while NANTAP are the stage people. We are all under Nollywood but there is segregation and the audience have constituted to the problem.
Now, just run through some of the movies you have had to be involved in?
Etei Keta. I also played Saidi Balogun’s mum in the movie. I also had Sako Jiya, Laroda Ojo (By Saheed Salami). I did Ojumo Ire (By Saheed Salami as well). I did Gongo Aso (By Saidi Balogun). I did Oba Onise Ara (by Oladele). I did Asiri Oba tu (By Sola Akintunde). I did Jagunlabi (wrote the script) then I did Omiran (wrote the script as well). I did Kutanle (By Eniola Olaniyan). I did Oba Asa (By Saidi Balogun). I did Leyin Olorun, Awodi o mo. I also did an album with Saidid Balogun, which is yet to be released. It’s titled Forver. We co-produced it. I coordinated it and I sang too with Adex, Artquake and Gloria Doyle. Then I did Igba Eda (By Lola Alao). I did Aya Gbangba (By Ope Olusanya). I did Tiara (Also Ope Olusanya). I did Kokoro Ate. I can’t remember them all. They’re so much.