My first T.V soap earned me N500 —Adedayo Davies

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WHAT was growing up like for you?

I was born in Ilesa, Osun State but I grew up in Lagos, I am the first child ; I attended Ladylak Primary school, Apapa, Federal Government College Kaduna and later graduated from University of Lagos where I studied Banking and Finance.

You got relative popularity while featuring in the soap entitled Flatmates; how did you get the role?
I actually started with Wale Adenuga when I featured in Papa Ajasco. Back then, when I was in the University, I joined a club that was into theatre, when Wale Adenuga wanted to start Papa Ajasco he came to recruit people from the club and I was among those he recruited. So my first soap was Papa Ajasco but Twilight Zone brought me into lime light. I met Kayode peters, the producer of Flatmates in theatre 15 in University of Lagos during an alumni programme, but before then, we were part of a stage play known as “Devils speak at Muson centre” and it was while we were together that he told me about Flatmates.

What else do you do aside acting?
I do adverts, MC jobs, and presently I am building some speakers around my street because I intend renting it out to people who are interested, but I am just into anything entertainment.

Have you been approached by any producer to feature in movies aside soap? There are lots of things happening in home videos, one is the tribe issue. Igbo's who are basically the ones running the English sector of the movie industry will deny you of the privilege to participate in their movies, because they are from another tribe. Secondly, in the Yoruba movies they believe in caucus. It is only people who are in their set or caucus that are lucky to get jobs or roles. And I am not in any of these groups. Therefore, it is hard for me to get jobs from these two sectors.
Maybe you do not have want they want, that is why you have not been called…
Although a lot of revolution is going on in the industry in the sense that it is not a matter of who you know but what you can offer and with time what you can do will start speaking for you. I have got the potentials and talent as an actor because presently there is this movie I just finished with A-Z Production; we started in December and ended last January. But at times, it can get frustrating to get involved in a movie and at the end; a token is what you get. It is not just encouraging.

Is A-Z a new production outfit?
It has been a household name in the film production sector in Nigeria, but they just came back after five years break. They are now fully back to business and the name of the movie producer and the studio outfit is A-Z.

What is your perspective about the industry?
The industry of today condones laziness and thieves because back then, before you feature in any movie you must go for auditions and wait before you are called. But nowadays, it is an all comers affair as people now come out all in the name of being actors and actresses which they are not. We are not organized in Nollywood, how can you pay the sum of N15, 000 before you become a member of AGN, it is too exorbitant.

What was your first pay like as an actor?
I did Papa Ajasco for Wale Adenuga and I was paid the sum of N500 per episode. We were all in the university then, Kayode peters, Wale Oloba and a host of others. Aside from the money we got then, Wale Adenuga was more like a father to us and he never treated us like his employees.

So how did you come across the stage name “Baba Landlord”?
I got the stage name while starring for the soap Flatmates.

Somebody like you could have ended up in a finance house having studied Banking and Finance?
I realize that I am a very restless person, I cannot sit in a place for so long and if I do I will definitely run mad that is why I can't work in an establishment. I never had the intention of becoming an actor but God just wants it that way.

How did you discover your talent?
Right from my secondary school days, there was this lady who wanted to join a drama group but she wanted my friends and I to join too. After much pressure, about three of us went with her and since then, I have been participating and I never knew it is what I will eventually end up doing.

What have been the challenges thus far as an actor?
The challenges have been enormous but the major one is finance. A lot of producers face a lot, like there was a particular job I was called to do and the producer offered me N3, 000. He also gave me frivolous excuses that they want to premiere the movie and there is no cash. I was forced to leave the scene and the truth is that they offer you peanuts and when you walk away you see some who would want to do the job for free as long as their faces will show on the screen. This some times kills your morale and the truth of the matter is that AGN is still not doing anything about it.

What do you think can be done?
Some law makers collect N15 million in a month and they tell us they make laws, everybody in Nigeria is greedy as long as there is no regulatory law to monitor and set things aright. A minimum amount should be pegged for all actors and actresses and if the producer is unable to meet up with the fee, they should walk away and that would make things better. At times, some producers would promise heaven and earth and after the job the producer will switch his phones off. So, it is just the passion that still keeps people on the set.

What do you like most about yourself?
My career and that is because it is something I do and am happy about.

The Nation - My first T.V soap earned me N500 ?Adedayo Davies
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