By EKAETTE BASSEY
Linda Adedeji Aderemi is a movie maker, actress, wife and a mum. She has produced nine films of her own, including Oyinkansola, Seraye, Ika lokunri, Ojo Ale, Omotoni and Alejo mi. In this interview with Potpourri she speaks about her career, the industry and family.
Would you say you have come this far on account of your talent, luck or support from colleagues?
Yes, I would say I have come this far because I’m talented. Second, because I’m lucky and third, because I got support from my colleagues. I would say I’m talented because I deliver my role very well, if I’m not good at my roles, no producer would want to offer me a job again.
Second, if I’m not lucky, even if I’m talented, they might not still give me any role, if you are not luckya nobody will see you or recommend you, and third, I also get support from my colleagues. If I don’t get support from them, nobody will call me to their production, that means I will only feed off my movies alone which is not good, it will not take me everywhere.
Who and what has influenced your growth the most in the industry?
I would say that being able to interpret my roles very well has actually helped my growth in the industry and having a good director like the one directing most of my movies and having good marketers at the same time is a big influence to my growth. Even when I want to make mistakes in my work, they are always there to correct me, having my colleagues around me and some other people that showed love and support whenever I have a story to tell them, I would say that was all that helped my growth in the industry.
Why is it that every actor feels the need to produce their own firms, is it a measure of success in the Yoruba sector or natural phenomenon?
I won’t say is a measure of success or natural phenomenon, sometimes we decide to produce movies to bring out our best. In my own case, talking from my own perspective; I wasn’t really getting the kind of roles I really wanted from producers and directors, what I get from them are the roles of a house wife, ‘runs girl’ roles and the likes but none of them have ever given me that village girl role, that was one of the reasons I thought of producing movies myself so that I could play or display those roles that people never believed I could play.
That was what brought about one of my movies ‘Omotoni’, it was a village setting movie where I had to speak the typical Yoruba language, since nobody wanted to give me the role, I decided to bring it up, and people were surprised and amazed because they never believed I could play a village girl role. So, I believe other producers are producing for people to see they can really take up challenges. insult they get from some producers and directors.
What does it take to produce an average Yoruba film, and how do you compare being an actor and a producer?
Most importantly, you must have a good storyline, good cast, good director, good locations and great crew and of course, with good money you can produce a good Yoruba movie. Comparing an actor with a producer, I would say being an actor alone, you will have to wait for someone to call you and give you u a role, you have to wait for a producer’s call which doesn’t come everyday, except if you are a very popular actor, that is when you get regular calls from producers but if you are an upcoming actor, you might not even get a call for a long while and it will look like one is not making progress, but being a producer, even if they don’t call, you have your own movie to work on.
Every industry has its problems what turns you off mostly about the Yoruba industry?
What turns me off the most in Yoruba industry is actually the silly mistakes we make in our movies. It’s sad to watch a movie and see continuity guy crossing the movie or you see the leg of the makeup artist in a ready movie, it pisses me off so much. I would say what ever is worth doing should be done well, I won’t say mine is perfect but you will see mistakes in Yoruba movies and they are so common. Its so sad and it turns me off, sometimes you see stories written badly and some with terrible ending.
As a UK based star, how would you compare the budding film industry in London to Nigeria
I won’t say I base in the UK because I stay more in Nigeria than UK, I don’t know if there are Nollywood caucuses in UK, I haven’t heard of any. If we have to act a movie here, its either we bring the actors from Nigeria which will cost like millions or you have to shoot some part here with the few Nigerians that are here and later go and finish the movie in Nigeria. I have actually done some movies here in UK, some are not released yet, the ones I have done in UK I always come home to finish it. I have never completed a movie in UK, its very expensive if you want to complete a Yoruba movie in UK because its very expensive to bring in all the actors to the UK.
What is the story behind your relocation to UK, is it love or career move?
Well, my relocation to UK is based on love, if you love your kids, you have to stay with them. If you have British kid you have to stay in Britain with them. My career is in Nigeria so my staying in UK is absolutely based on love.
Should woman be married? And between being married and being a baby mama, what works for you?
Definitely every woman should be married, its good to be married, its good to have kids in a right way, with your husband by your side because that kid needs a dad so it’s good to be married. Whosoever that chooses to be a baby mama, I will say you have got no life.i understand those who became victims of rejection by men and leave them to take care of the kids, that is understandable, but choosing to be a baby mama, its not a good life.
What should be more important to a woman; love, money, power or sex?
I give it to power, to be honest, love, money and sex is important but what matters most is power, when a woman is powerful, everyone will love you, people will love to be around you, people will bring money to you just to have access with important people and sex will be the cheapest thing. So I will say power is the ultimate among it all.
What can make you dump acting?
Nothing can make me dump acting, no matter what. I have done that several times in the past. I was busy, there was no time but I can’t do that again. The reason I dropped acting for two years then was because of my baby. I cherish my boy a lot. Many people asked why I was off the screen for so long, I just needed space because I gave birth to my baby in 2018 after seven years of marriage. I went through hell before I had my child. I had eleven miscarriages before I had my son. After then God had mercy on me and my family. I think it’s not too much to stay a year and take care of my boy. I will go back to acting very soon because my son is a year already.