Tuesday, October 21, 2014

‘’QUOTE: "I did not choose acting as a career. It is an innate talent God gave to me"‘’.

PAUL OBAZELE, one of  Nigeria's Iconic stars, in this interview, shares his movie career experience with FLIES magazine.
F.M: Background?
P.O: My name is Paul Obazele. I was born into the family of Chief and Mrs. Patrick Okato  Obazele.  I am from Edo State where they do not count the number of children a mother has; but I am one of the smallest in my family. I was born into a broadcast home. My mother is a medical personnel and now a retired matron; and my Dad is late. I have lots of brothers and sisters whom I am very proud of and we run one strong family. I have a critical family on the things I do like the roles I play, how I should and would have played it.
F.M:  Education?
P.O: I graduated in 1986 from Auchi Polytechnic where I studied Business Administration. I started television programmes in 1985 with NTA Benin. My father never really wanted any of us to get into journalism or broadcasting as it were.  I knew one of the accepted acts I had from my father was my performance in a stage play during the National productivity which is celebrated every year in the country. I performed in the front stage with Uncle Olu Jacobs, Aunty Joke Silva and Wale Macaulay. I cannot forget the title of that play. It was the Storm Within, where I played a very arrogant manager.  At the end of the play, my father was in the crowd with the former  President, General Ibrahim B. Babangida. We got a standing ovation and I knew my father was sold out because the President made one or two comments. I saw my father smiling like thats my son and that was where the support came from, after a battle of about 10 years trying to get endorsement from my father,  It finally came and the support became enormous.
F.M: Why did you choose acting as a career?
P.O: I studied business. I did not choose acting as a career. It is an innate talent God gave to me. What I studied has been what is sustaining me and my talent. Through my educational background I have been able to harness these talents, put it into diverse functions as it were. Your talent will always drive you to do the things you want to do.
F.M:  What movies have  you acted in?
P.O:  (Laughs) Lots of movies. Just to mention but a few in those days; Ripples, Checkmate, After the Storm, Third Eye, etc. Then, Checkmate was showing on Thursdays, Ripples was Fridays and After the Storm was Saturdays. Eventually, other soap operas came up and I remember then in 2001 or so, Paul Obazele was the face most people were used to because there was no major soap opera I had not acted in. Then, I decided to back out. They are just so many of them that I have lost count. Also some commercials like Provoke, House Party, Douglas my love, SetUp, Man of God, etc. Some of the recent ones are Invasion1897, Iyore, St. Mary, etc.
F.M: Parental support?
P.O: My father believed in me but my mother was scared of the fact that there would be an over-exposure for the family. All in all, they finally embraced it and threw all their weight behind me.
F.M: Challenges?
P.O: First is piracy. Secondly, we have left out our cultural values and now we are trying to emulate the white man. I am not a racist but everybody has a right to defend his or her own culture and tradition. Today, we have what we call cultural dislocation, doing the white mans thing. We have not been able to show the world how beautiful we are, so it has becomes a problem for our children yet unborn; and even the ones that are growing up.
F.M: What are you future Plans?
P.O: I do not tell people what I plan to do because I like it be a surprise.
F.M: Likes and dislikes?
P.O: I hate lies. 
F.M: What do you do for relaxation?
P.O: I play with my kids and hang out in my office here with my friends. I must hit the gym every morning. On Saturday and Sunday after church service, I hang out with my kids because that is the only time I have for them. Most of the time, my life is embedded in the church.
F.M: Word of advice for upcoming actors?
P.O: I always say this; you cannot be a long-time movie star if you are not educated. Go to school first, if you have the talent, it will always drive you to where you want to be and the moment you are able to harness what you learnt in school, you will be able to sharpen your talent. Everybody is a star. Everybody is a machine that you chop off your rough edges through education.
F.M: Words of note for FLIES Magazine?
P.O: I want to ask you a question. You remember the first time we met and I told you to focus?
F.M: (cuts in) Yes Sir.
P.O: This means FLIES Magazine is a focus entity as it were. Gradually, if you put your head low, you will definitely turn into an authority which I see you becoming soon.
F.M: Thank you, sir.
P.O:You are welcome.

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