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Guess Who’s Back on the Scene? “Living in Bondage” Nollywood Star Rita Nzelu shines again at “International Games” Premiere in London

BellaNaija.com

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Rita Nzelu with her son

She was one of the pioneering Nollywood stars with roles in blockbuster movies including “Living in Bondage” and “Nneka the Pretty Serpent“. Rita Nzelu exited the scene in 2003 when she relocated to the United Kingdom to live with her husband. It has been nearly a decade and now she is re-entering the Nollywood sphere with a new movie “International Games“.

Rita recently spoke to the Sun Newspaper and here is what she had to say about her career, life in the UK, family life and more.

On Why She Left Nollywood at the Peak of her Career
I left Nollywood and traveled out of Nigeria because of marriage. I left so as to join my husband. I believe a woman should join her husband and not the other way round. In the past seven or eight years, we had two children in between. I can tell you, I now have three boys to take care of. My husband and two sons.

Family over Career
Not exactly. I decided to concentrate on my family but of course I was abreast with happenings in the industry. I didn’t attend all the functions in town, and so was not seen by all at all times but I was in touch. It was deliberate because during this period, I got a full grip and bonding with my family. So, I can begin a gradual return now.

“Missing Out” on the Nollywood Boom
I do not feel I missed anything. There is time for everything as far as I know. I left Nigeria and Nollywood when God wanted me to leave. I am very happy that what came in terms of marriage at that time and which took me away came when it came. I do not miss Nollywood in the manner that you imagine or because actors are well rewarded and getting endorsements these days. Those times were gone. The Bible says there is time for everything. I do not feel I miss anything and neither do I have any regret leaving. You win some and lose some in life. Well, I got a strongly bonded family.

“Living in Bondage”
I played the role of Tina, a call girl, in Living in Bondage. Chief Kenneth Nnebue of NEK had watched me rehearsing at the National Theater and invited me to come for audition in his office, which I did and won the role. I later went on to do Nneka The Pretty Serpent, Blind Trust, Unforgiving, Ukwa and so on. I cannot recall all the movies I did.

The Present – “International Games”
It feels good. It feels very refreshing to be back… like a breath of fresh air. It is like renewing a marriage vow. I tried to keep a lot of my private family matters very private, so I kept everything low about my family. I have always not wished that my very private came into the public.

It is a movie very dear to my heart. I had been away from the screens for more than seven years so we needed to play according to standards and professionalism required of us. It is a film directed by Tchidi Chikere who also put the story together in a wonderful screen play. I play the lead role while Jackie Appiah also plays big in the film, which tries to mirror the condition of life of Africans living in Europe as they relate with fellow Africans and their European friends as a whole. It tells tales of the shock in cultures between the British and the African. It throws light on what happens when two cultures meet in drama. It is loaded in intrigues brought about by the emotions of love. We also have several other very talented actors and actresses in the movie. All of us are happy with the production.

Love, Husband & Family
We (My husband & I) met in December 2003 and we did the traditional marriage in March 2004. He had proposed marriage two weeks after I met him.

There was this particular kind of bonding that held us together. It was nice to be with someone who knows you well. It was not riches or being cute. There was a real connection somewhere. In marriage and family matters, there is more to it than riches and being handsome. If it were riches or being handsome, they may have faded after eight years. Yes, my husband is very much handsome but loves me dearly. He was so serious and genuine so I got convinced that he meant well. I have heard stories of those who get married and get abandoned by their husbands in Nigeria to rot away because they also have other romantic entanglements. I only worried about that but got a conviction that it wouldn’t be so for me.

He is such a caring man who loves to see me progress from point A to B. He accepted me for who I am. He stood his ground gidigba even after a lot of discouragements. I could see he was genuine. He did not beat about the bush. He just told me point blank ‘let’s get married’. We only courted for two months and we got married.

Before my marriage, I had set time for myself that after about eight years of break, I would return to the system. Yes, it was between me and my God, I had said so because my family matters so much to me. We seem to have bonded well; my husband is my first baby while the two other sons follow.

Beauty Secrets
My main secret is using no chemicals and their likes, leaving God to do the rest. I am only natural. When people ask me what I do to look the way I look, I laugh because I am just a natural person and would readily appear natural. I will regularly dress in blazers and inner tops. I also could be found in jeans to feel free to work. But I dress to suit the occasions.

You can read the complete interview via the Sun Newspaper

Watch the “International Games” Trailer

Photos from the premiere of “International Games”

Nuella Njubigbo, Rita Nzelu & Lillian Bach

TChidi Chikere

Rita takes the stage

Photo Credit
DJA Media

19 Comments

  1. Bella

    November 5, 2012 at 9:30 am

    Rita looks nice and her son is cute too.

  2. Doxology

    November 5, 2012 at 9:48 am

    Looking good Rita, you and your cute son. Welcome back.

  3. tati

    November 5, 2012 at 9:49 am

    little man is soooo cute

  4. Teris

    November 5, 2012 at 9:50 am

    She has a strong, attractive face. Why she chose to overwhelm her person with all that “brazillian” or “turkish” or whatever and wear a dress that does absolutely nothing for her.. mystery!

  5. RitaFlower

    November 5, 2012 at 10:20 am

    I love family’s pictures:Rita Nzelu with her son.Rita is a beautiful first name too for this pretty black woman…

  6. Idak

    November 5, 2012 at 11:04 am

    I have finally given up on this hair business.
    This is the final nail on the coffin.
    That stuff up here seems migraine-inducing.

    • praise

      November 6, 2012 at 9:40 am

      Like,,,

  7. kem

    November 5, 2012 at 12:23 pm

    the hair is neatly package, i dnt see how it affects anyone here, u av stay cool with ur low cut and allow those who loves hair to do their thing na, haba

    • tracy

      November 5, 2012 at 3:22 pm

      GBAGAUN!!!

  8. Onyinye

    November 5, 2012 at 1:01 pm

    Wonderful…..Family first and business later…..I like dat

  9. joy atanu

    November 5, 2012 at 1:20 pm

    cute keep it up

  10. Lulu

    November 5, 2012 at 3:53 pm

    She’s been taking good care of herself. She looks really good and well put together! She choose the better portion. Family is always the most important. U might be the most popular actress, but if u do not have a strong family base, u’ll always feel the empty!
    Good for u Rita!

  11. Chattyzee

    November 5, 2012 at 4:07 pm

    omg! She looks amazing!!!

    http://dprodigalchild.wordpress.com/

  12. Me andYou

    November 6, 2012 at 1:08 am

    Crap movie!

  13. Zimira

    November 6, 2012 at 3:30 am

    Drag Queen hair and to think she did not need any of it. What a pity. The pictures are forever.

  14. NNENNE

    November 6, 2012 at 5:51 am

    Looks like a nice movie!

  15. SK

    October 19, 2014 at 6:57 pm

    she looks very beautiful and i also like her idea of family first before business.keep it up.

  16. BC

    October 23, 2014 at 3:56 am

    I would have watched but Jackie Appiah for me is a no go zone when it comes to acting…Sorry Rita.

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