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Is there a Rift between “Homegrown” Nollywood Actors and “IJGB” Actors? Adesua Etomi & Toyin Abraham’s #NECLive5 Discussion raises Important Questions

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This clip of a passionate exchange between actresses Adesua Etomi and Toyin Abraham at the recently held NEC Live 5 event has been trending for a few days because of the passion with which both actresses tried to make their points during the panel discussion.

For us, it’s more than a trending video. The discussion raises some important questions about the Nigerian entertainment industry and the answers to these questions will help move the industry forward.

During NEC Live 5, Adesua Etomi and Toyin Abraham were joined by Patrick Doyle and John Ugbe for a session tagged ‘How Nollywood Is Reclaiming The Market from Hollywood’. During the session, things got heated after an audience member asked why Nigerians in the entertainment industry do not support each other with monetary compensation to which Patrick Doyle stated that there are several structures in place in the entertainment industry to help move rising stars forward.

Adesua then asked an important question about the functionality of these structures because it is not enough for the structures to exist, they have to work. Toyin Abraham countered her by asking if she belonged to any guild in the industry to which Adesua said “No”. Toyin then pointed out that Adesua was “part of the problem” because you cannot question the functionality of a structure when you are not even a part of the structure.

Both actresses however raised quite important questions and hopefully, with the start of this conversation comes a solution.

Through the panel discussion, the fact that Adesua Etomi got into the Nigerian movie industry ‘only’ a few years ago kept coming up and her stand as a Nollywood actor was questioned. She was, however, quick to point out that her return to Nigeria – and the movie industry – was a conscious choice and with her return, she brings over 5 years of training.

Their discussion also sparked mini discussions online.

How functional are these structures set in place in the movie industry? Do all actors need to be a part of the structures for them to work? Is there a bias against actors that move back to Nigeria after years of being away? Can Nollywood be as huge as Hollywood?

Watch the exchange below.

45 Comments

  1. Chrystheana

    May 9, 2017 at 11:19 pm

    Please post a full Video if available…That discussion was very controversial.

  2. presh

    May 9, 2017 at 11:29 pm

    i saw it on TV yesterday ,, the attack was really obvious , more like beefing.

    • STOP THE FAKENESS, BE ORIGINAL

      May 10, 2017 at 4:19 pm

      I don’t see any beefing. I agree with Toyin’s point. She’s expressive and used nigerian mannarisms doesn’t make her angry. I’m not hating but Nigerian entertainment nowadays require you to have a british/canadian/American accent in order to get the job.
      Why do you think some home grown Nigerians have to twist their tongue even if only God knows what the heck they saying. If there was no potential and opportunity, none of these people will come back to Nigeria. Let’s be real here, the entertainment industry abroad is highly competitive and cut throat especially for an immigrant.. These people have slim chance to succeed the way they will in Nigeria. So, Nigeria is a good startup where they can build and nurture their talent. It’s good that Nigeria welcomes them but they should contribute to make it better not sit around and condemn.

      How can a talk show based in Nigeria all have foreign accents? it’s ridiculous. You are representing Nigeria, Africa. Leave it to the british and Americans to represent their countries with their accents. These Nigerians should adapt and adjust to Nigerian accent if anything.
      You ever noticed how British actors change their accents to American because now they are in America, they have to appeal to the people and also representing the country.

      1
  3. Jules

    May 9, 2017 at 11:49 pm

    BN! How naa? This is old naa like 2 weeks old or there about & true it was more like beef I concur. Toyin Abraham.’s body language, facial expressions……Biko make she calm down. How long has she herself being acting sef.?Well handled by Adesua sha-God big pass them-lol

  4. TA

    May 9, 2017 at 11:57 pm

    Interesting exchange. I love that both sides made a point. The existing structures in Nollywood bad or not as ‘functional’ as it should be has helped the industry grow to its current multi-billion dollar status. Should the weaknesses be ignored? Absolutely not. There’s so much room for growth for Nollywood that I think we can give Hollywood serious healthy competition, we need to improve the existing structures to transform the industry to a world class one.

  5. Fran

    May 10, 2017 at 5:47 am

    Brilliant exchange and definitely good points made by both sides.

    But I’d like to question something that I feel in my opinion was used to attack Adesua. She doesn’t belong to any guilds, so what? Does that make her less formidable or talented than she is? And like she said, what really is the FUNCTIONALITY of these associations, asides from promoting cronyism and god-fatherism – things which are rife in Nigeria? What is the benefit of being a member? Asides “attending meetings” like Toyin so pompously stated?

    I’m proud of people like Adesua, because they are outliers, and they are the ones who will take Nollywood to compete positively on the world stage. Did you hear Toyin limit Hollywood acting to “acting nude?” Do you know how many amazing movies Hollywood has produced with powerful themes? Can you see how narrow-minded and combative she is? Those are not the people that will change the system. It’s people like Adesua who are open-minded, curious and ready to ask questions that will really shake things up, and I am SO ready for that.

  6. Jane(the real Jane)

    May 10, 2017 at 6:46 am

    Adesua spoke so intelligently….. Toyin was speaking from an emotional stand……Adesua could have remained abroad, one day one day she for still make am….but coming home was a brave thing to do, and its not like they are famzing her foreign status, she’s a very good actress. One the other hand, a lot of talented acts are home grown too. So left to me, it isn’t by belonging to guild….na only fight, politics and camps goes on there….let everyone enjoy their craft the way they want to……toyin was clearly beefing …..but no point….they are both good actresses.

    • mz_danielz

      May 10, 2017 at 12:20 pm

      So because coming home was the brave thing to do, she shouldn’t be part of a guild?

      The truth is, there is so much the arts can do for our economy and there is need for regulations and associations like this for them to earn their place and fight their battles. While there is need for improvement in the said guilds, it doesn’t undermine their importance. And to be honest, the rift between the tush+IJGBs and the gbogbo ero is kinda obvious.

    • LemmeRant

      May 10, 2017 at 2:10 pm

      “Adesua could have remained abroad, one day one day she for still make am”

      Lol, you’re joking right.
      The only reason this babes even get considered is bcos they’re light and can speak English which mostly boils down to the inferiority complex of our people.

    • Elizabeth O.

      May 11, 2017 at 1:44 am

      I totally disagree with your comment on the ‘glorified act’ of Adesua by returning home. The truth is that it was not a matter of choice that she pursued a career in Nigeria because we all know how difficult it is to get a professional job in the U.K. Every student is on borrowed time in U.K and it’s compulsory one returns home at the completion of studies. I didn’t see any part that state she is a U.K. citizen or had leave to remain in the U.K. She has benefited from the system far more than she has given.

  7. o

    May 10, 2017 at 7:05 am

    Most of the very good talents imo are home grown. I can count a few of the IJGB actors and entertainers that are really good. Ade Laoye, Dolapo Oni, fantastic actresses. The others are okay. Talking about​ entertainment generally now you know what obtains. Look good, have an accent and you’re good to go. The home grown ones should accommodate the IJGB and the IJGBs should join the guilds and help improve it.

    • Fisayo

      May 10, 2017 at 10:11 am

      Ade Laoye yes.

      But Dolapo Oni? Are you having a laugh mate? (in my East Landan accent)

    • o

      May 10, 2017 at 12:40 pm

      Lol. Yes Fisayo. I actually think Dolapo is a very good actress. She was in Saro the musical and I loved her acting.

  8. Eti

    May 10, 2017 at 8:06 am

    BN, Kindly go through(proofread) your articles before posting them online .i understand we make mistakes but if it becomes regular then it is carelessness.Thanks

    • le coco

      May 10, 2017 at 9:03 am

      I am also tired of this… edit edit edit.. it is important.. i am also in the industry, and you have no idea how many times i make such silly mistakes.. BUT thank God for my editors, they catch the mistakes that i wouldn’t have even if i read my work 10 times before submitting.

      Just yesterday, my editor put something up on social media, something that i didn’t write. immediately i spotted a mistake few mistakes, and i was mortified.. i literally screamed.. that is to tell you that even editors are not perfect. Had my editor given it to me to proofread before posting it could have been avoided.

    • deedee

      May 10, 2017 at 9:35 am

      As in ehnnn….. i was wondering if no one saw the mistakes…this is getting too much please BN Team….bikonu, i’m wondering if that vacancy is still open….i wont mind helping you guys with proof reading…i wont charge much don’t worry lol

  9. Omoge

    May 10, 2017 at 8:31 am

    Haba, BN there was no need to post this, but since you have. Let me just say that Toyin is a Yoruba woman and so there is a tendency for her to have expressions and look as if she’s is angry or beefing on Adesua isn”t that how Yoruba people speak especially when they are passionate about what they are saying? we all have that one friend that takes things too seriously and a simple conversation can easily turn to a heated argument because they are too passionate and they have certain mannerisms.
    Besides they hugged after the whole show. Its because Adesua is Nigeria’s sweetheart at the moment that’s why it looks like Toyin is beefing, but I don’t think she was.

    1
    • africhic

      May 10, 2017 at 8:57 am

      Toyin is not a Yoruba woman.

  10. CHERYL

    May 10, 2017 at 9:05 am

    @omoge, ur point is noted but point of correction, Toyin is a Yoruba actress but she isnt a yoruba woman, infact she and Adesuwa are both from Edo state,

    1
    • Razz N Bougie

      May 10, 2017 at 10:20 pm

      I don’t get it. For an Edo woman to speak Yoruba so fluently that she is identified as a “Yoruba actress”, then she must have probably been bred in Yoruba land (and probably has a Yoruba mother too). Therefore Omoge’s point is very valid as per facial expressions and mannerisms that may be misinterpreted. When will we stop doing this divisive nonsense in Nigeria? Haba, someone will be born and bred in a certain city, speaker the language, eat the food, marry from the city and will still be reminded that he/she is from a place that they have probably never visited in their life?

  11. LOLAAA

    May 10, 2017 at 9:08 am

    lmao…its no beef o…if you follow Toyin, you would know well that she behaves like this, Her expression is just hit,

  12. Gerry

    May 10, 2017 at 9:21 am

    I honestly didn’t notice any beef from Toyin! All I saw was a passionate individual. It’s not OK for us to sit on the fence and criticize other peoples work which is what I saw Adesua doing. If there was no structure on ground there’s no way she would have left “the abroad” to come here, she came because she saw an opportunity, an opportunity that some people labored to create. Rather than complain, let her join the guild and offer her contributions so others can also benefit and the industry can move forward

    1
    • zee

      May 10, 2017 at 9:56 am

      thank you!!! Toyin made very valid points. you can’t just sit on the fence and complain without making any substantial move to better the situation. I know bella naija commenters will support adesuwa not because she was making valid points but because she is “adesuwa” and she is a favorite. Lets learn to seperate the message fro the messenger sometimes.

    • oooooooops

      May 10, 2017 at 10:52 am

      Infact my Darl Susu was even initially rude interrupting Toyin sef

    • le coco

      May 10, 2017 at 11:02 am

      Adesua did not complain.. if u notice she chose her words carefully.. she asked a question.. How Functional is the system? how is that an attack? she asked how do you make people aware of the systems in place..I have to agree with Adesua… if i dont see a system that is at least half functional.. i will not be part of it.. i need to know that the people who are already in the position are at least trying.. or doing something…

      A lot of the Nigerians abroad have this same experiences.. for example.. the Nigerian association in any foreign university tends to be quite dysfunctional.. every university i have attended, both for undergrad or postgrad.. I have wanted to join the association… i make an effort to be a part of it.. but every time wit out fail i attend the first meeting and it is a huge waste of my time… they argue.. they fight.. then at the end they want to start asking for membership fees.. how does that work? I cant join after one week and become the president and start calling the shots… so it is imperative that we see a somewhat functional system however imperfect.. Its these same Nigerians that will see you up and down campus, or recognize your Nigerian name and ask why you didn’t pay membership.. or proceed to brand you as unpatriotic

    • Mz Titilitious

      May 10, 2017 at 6:39 pm

      @oops i tot i was the only one that noticed that, it was so annoying!

  13. Delacremez

    May 10, 2017 at 9:24 am

    Lol.

  14. Nonye

    May 10, 2017 at 9:36 am

    They all argued well. Mr Doyle was right though. Saying coming to Nigeria was a choice is more of a defense than reality. If Adesua had remained abroad I don’t think we would have known her or she would have reached where she is because everyone knows it is not easy to establish abroad but coming back and using that platform to get into a non-functional structure to limelight is more than just a mere choice. Since there are guilds they should look at their strenghts and weakenesses and how to help upcoming talented actors in Nollywood. In general, they are all in the limelight and should work together as a team to move Nollywood forward because we are not up to Bollywood and we are trying to get to Hollywood.

  15. MyRubyHeels

    May 10, 2017 at 9:47 am

    BN.
    Two things:
    1. Edit Better.
    2. Edit Better.

    My brain was hurting reading this. This could have otherwise, been a nice article….
    You guys are better than this. I’ve seen you do better. And I know that you can do better. If it’s too much work for the in house editor, I’ll be happy to do it for you guys.

  16. abby

    May 10, 2017 at 10:07 am

    y’all calm down..toyin is always like this..over-zealous, too pasionate..she always puts in too much emotions into everything even the acting..its not a beef thing as much as u would want it to be..

  17. Shazy

    May 10, 2017 at 10:11 am

    Omege, Gerry and Zee, thank you for your comments. I watched it last week on Hip TV…… Toyin and Patrick made some valid points. If Toyin was wrong she would not have been supported by Patrick, a veteran in the industry.

    • Shazy

      May 10, 2017 at 10:11 am

      Omoge

  18. 2shee

    May 10, 2017 at 11:06 am

    Though I understand Adesua’s point. She is not appropriate to give such advise when she is not even contributing to the existing guilds in the first place. she should have just kept her mouth shut. I support Toyin fully, I don’t see any beef here.

    1
  19. concerned9ja

    May 10, 2017 at 12:50 pm

    Going to UK\US or wherever to study for your Masters doesn’t equate to IJGB…
    When you born…or raised abroad….pay taxes…survived against all odds i.e.racism and all that..that’s what makes you a IJGB..not all the yeye acquired pho ne!!

    • Sugamama

      May 10, 2017 at 5:11 pm

      This reeks of resentment. First of all, I hate the IJGB term, but you don’t have to be born or raised abroad to be IJGB. As for people who schooled in the US and maybe stayed to work after, emm, they pay taxes. Even people who only go for their Masters may experience racism, so don’t come here trying to say who qualifies and who doesn’t. So how about the people who left after secondary school, finished college, worked at least 2 years and then moved back, they are not IJGB even though they’ve spent about 6 years living in another country?
      Na wa.

    • Talia

      May 11, 2017 at 7:52 am

      Seriously I agree! I think Nigerians are too quick to attach IJGB to their accolades! You just go to the UK/US for undergrad/masters, stay a couple of extra months and then you come back and claim IJGB ? Lies! You didn’t come back willingly, your visa ran out! When you’re born or raised, now that’s different. Not someone that went on a student visa for a year plus ?

    • I Just Got Back

      May 11, 2017 at 11:07 am

      Taa! IJGB does not mean you were born and raised wherefa. As long as you just got back, you are IJGB. And it’s not that serious. Cam dan.

  20. ec

    May 10, 2017 at 1:10 pm

    Toyin does not need to act that ghetto to be honest.
    Adesua is right now doing far better than you, with little drama.

    Toyin next time be a bit classy.

    • Mz Titilitious

      May 10, 2017 at 6:39 pm

      far better than her coz of wedding party and coz she’s getting married? you must be joking!

    • Marian

      May 11, 2017 at 9:55 am

      Really? As in Really? Abeg!!! The next time you say Toyin’s name put some Respeck on it!!! 2017 has been a great year for her; Rebranding toh bahd gan!!!!!
      Alakada 3 gon be out very soon, make sure to bo witiwiti!!

  21. Engoz

    May 10, 2017 at 6:56 pm

    I have never seen a people more averse to criticisms than Nigerians. What is wrong with you people? Adesua’s question was valid. How functional is the guild? The question was not answered. One would expect the ‘guild members’ to lay out the ‘major strides’ that has been accomplished by the guild, also acknowledge its weaknesses rather than go on an sentimental rant. That is how you win an argument. The Actor’s Guild of Nigeria website is not even functional and you want to be taken seriously by intelligent people, lmao.

  22. tunmi

    May 10, 2017 at 8:26 pm

    Good stuff.

    How does one join a guild? Like what are the steps?

  23. My Opinion

    May 10, 2017 at 9:11 pm

    Gosh some girls are so freaking RAZZ – Bring it down a notch its not that serious boo. act a lil polished sometimes – are we fighting??? 🙂

    BankyW really got a good wife. She can hold her own so for all of you who thinks she is some air head or cry cry babe (cos of the character she plays) – you are sadly mistaken her for someone else. From what i see she holds her own, and knows what she wants and what she does not want. Very respectable too – knows how to argue respectively and with class to get her point without being rude like most . She comes across as one of the most intelligent well spoken Nollywood actresses out there (kinda like Lupita who can go on any american talk show and hold a great conversation – that skill is so important – excellent personality – Gabrielle Sidibe possess the great personality too) – Its not like one who can easily go and embarrass you on international platform. You cannot take them anywhere. my goodness

    BankyW you chose excellent lady to mother your children. Absolutely fantastic
    May no Jezebel put asunder what God has put together. Yes let us overhype, She is the IT factor.

    But in answer to the question – there is no rift per se – they are all nigerians but i know some few Nollywood IJGB actresses i spoke to and yes there is this bit of jealousy when they first arrive, as would be expected but after a while – everything normalizes. We are all human am sure you too will feel some kinda way – just a lil when one fine babe just arrives and now they dont even audiition cos they are that good.. But personally i feel there is room for everybody. Jealousy only blocks your own blessing.

    Adesua thank God you have a praying mother oo – prayer warrior mother for life – You are blessed. Keep on praying cos some are not smiling at all at all. The “Why Her and not Me” syndrome – even Genny who is not even IJGB – i know details of what she went thru when she was at the height of her career and even now that she is sat back a bit to make others shine, There is still that envy. What does she have that i dont have??? sydrome.

    In my opinion there has always been only Top 5 but no more than 10 BEST actresses in Nollywood eversince i been watching for over 2 decades now (in my opinion – we can agree to disagree), And it is hard for most of these newbies to break into that top 10 cos majority newbies have lost priorities,

    Most are in for fame only (or the other one wink wink 🙂 you know what i mean 🙂 ) – but me as a movie watcher when i watch the movie i know who is serious and who is not serious. When someone respects the art they put a lot of work into it and it shows in their performance. If you are not even top 20 actress and all you do is be posing for photoshoot left right center instead of investing in some acting and speaking classes – brazilian weave and fashion here and there to impress – yes you have lost priorities -and i will rule you out instantly – i will not watch any movie you are in – you are a waste of my precious time.. I can mention many names here of such kinds. You just acted one movie and your performance is not that memorable and you are spending money on photoshoot sending it to BN. abeg who are you? . It is those z class actresses whose blood is always blood too hot, gra gra gra gra – photoshoot and showing off on instagram – The top 5 actresses dont even do all of that. You dey rush – calm down.

    Everybody in this country now wants to be an actress – na wa ohh. thousands of actresses yet a handful of quality. KONTINUUUUU 🙂 – we are the ones who watch the movie we will make that judgement who is good and not good . Work and invest in your skill.

    Newbies spend more money invest in acting classes – just cos you majored in theatre arts in school does not make you are great actress, Does any of nollywood ever invest in acting workshops at all to improve their skill – am just curious.?

    BIGGEST PROBLEM IN NOLLYWOOD – NO BODY TAKES CRITICISM WELL (even if constructive) THEY THINK THEY ARE GOOD BASED ON INSTAGRAM FOLLOWERS. 🙂 KONTINUUUU biko 🙂

    • Toese

      June 5, 2017 at 2:08 pm

      With all ya epistle, only 7 likes as at 05/06/17
      Weh done !

  24. Mary

    May 11, 2017 at 12:14 pm

    No rift here, what is see is just great minds debating on an important issue.
    We should stop reading meaning to little things,
    #TheSkyIsWideEnough4Everyone

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