ARE you related to Rashidi Yekini? I am not related to Rashidi Yekini; let me make that clear to everybody. My surname has two ‘N’s
What was your experience on the set of Lunch Time Heroes?
It was very difficult shooting the movie. I was auditioned two days to the shoot so like I have been saying, it was ordained that I and Seyi will work together on the movie. I think he is a fabulous director, we bonded very well together. My accent was toned down a lot to be more Nigerian. I just found myself playing a completely different character from myself and what I usually get. I love the challenge. It was beautiful and I pray that other people will give me opportunities as well.
Do you have any issue with your complexion?
To be honest, I don’t have any issue with my complexion. If anybody does I feel sorry for them. I love my complexion, I love being dark skinned. I don’t think it takes away or adds anything to my career as an actress because at the end of the day, the talent has nothing to do with the outer vessel. If you are looking for a specific role, I do understand and again it’s about what I am bringing to the character and my complexion has no hindrance on that.
How come you know how to speak Yoruba and Pidgin English?
My mother is Yoruba and I have been living in Lagos for two years. I just picked it up.
How was it for you, school and all?
I was born and raised in London and I have been acting since I was five. I went to a drama school in the UK, the British School of Performing Art. From there, I moved to LA and attended the drama school there too, the American Academy of Performing Art. I have been acting my entire life. I have always known what I wanted to do. There was no confusion about it; this is what I set out to do.
You said you have been acting your entire life; how long ago was that?
My first play was when I was five. It was titled Veronica’s Violin. I remember it like yesterday because there were no instruments. I played the drum and I was a tap dancer. I then moved to LA Drum School and started working professionally. My first movie was IJE where I played the prisoner and everyone advised me to move to Nigeria. I finally moved back home in 2013.
How easy was it to adapt to the Nigerian environment?
I have never lived in Nigeria before; this is my first time living here. I used to come for holidays. Everyone thought I was crazy when I said I was coming to live here. Every member of my family lives in the UK. I live here all by myself.
You played the role of a Youth Corps member in Lunch Time Heroes. Have you had the opportunity of serving the country?
No, I have heard a lot of horror stories about youth service. Maybe I might serve next year, and if I decide to, I promise I will be posted to Lagos State.
How large is your family?
My family is very big; we are very close and tight knit. I talk to my brothers and sisters everyday and we are all alike.
How do you catch fun?
I love to read, watch movie and travel. I feel people should go on vacation at least once a year.
You have been in Nigeria for two years now, how has it been?
I think I am extremely blessed because I know how difficult it is to live here and be in the industry. I thank God for how far I have come and everything that has come my way.
What do you think is lacking in Nigeria, especially from the government?
I think it is unfair to compare Nigeria to abroad because at the end of the day, our challenges are different but I think for what we have been handed and been doing; we are doing a very good job in Nigeria. If the circumstances were different, we would be doing better. For instance, in shooting a movie, you don’t have to worry about generators and power going off abroad, but here, you have to make allowances.
You talked about Lupita; can you act like she did in 12 Years a Slave?
As an actor I can do that. I can do anything.
Can you act nude?
No I cannot.
Why is that? People are doing it.
I just simply can’t.
What if the pay is high?
No amount of money will make me act nude
What do you think about Nigerian Music?
I have no comment regarding that.
Who are your favorite artistes?
I am a big fan of Waje, Asa and Omawunmi. 2face is fabulous also.