‘Talent is never enough’, this was the unanimous conclusion reached by movie makers Chris Ihidero, Kemi Lala Akindoju and Wole Olagundoye, panelists at the session on Teaching and Training Tomorrow’s Talent of Nollywood at the Nigerian Entertainment Conference held on April 22, 2015 at Eko Hotel and Suites.
The three while fielding questions from the moderator, Dayo Odulaja of NET took turns to buttress the points raised by the speaker, veteran actress, Joke Silva about the need for actors to constantly re-invent themselves by getting the right training.
Ihidero compared the industry to a marathon and not a dash, as widely believed and advised upcoming actors to be wary of quick fame which he says never lasts.
Lala-Akindoju added that only good training and constant development will help actors remain relevant and not sink into the pit of mediocrity,
‘Training is key. An actor who doesn’t constantly train him or herself will be forgotten after a few years, because whatever knowledge they had in the past may not be relevant at that time. Another thing is humility. At different times, I have had to go and buy food for my senior colleagues even with my two degrees. Acting is a profession that requires you to be a thousand persons throughout your career and to do this, you need to make sure your ego and personality doesn’t get in the way’ she said.
Olagundoye on his part agreed with the need for training and also clamored for participation and support from government. According to him, the government needs to put in place structures to facilitate these trainings, citing a few examples like the Molete Film Village in Kwara State and a few others.
Rounding up the session, Silva cleared the air about the expectations actors have of their trainers as regards securing roles. She described it as inappropriate and advised that actors look out for roles and attend auditions rather than rely on their trainers.
‘A trainer helps you get ready for the job and doesn’t find you the job. That is one thing a lot of new actors need to know and it is what my teachers at the academy hammer on. We also advise that they be a part of the industry, observe the trends and network.’ Silva said.
She also mentioned the need for actors to surround themselves with professionals in whom they can entrust their management, accounts and all, so they can focus on fine-tuning their artistry, as it should be.