Two award-winning Nigerian movie industry stars (male and female) recently, unwittingly, delved into the murky political arena with political appointments to go with it. Checkout Kunle Afolayan and Mercy Johnson as they add feather plumes to their successful careers in Nollywood . . .
Nollywood Filmmaker Kunle Afolayan Gets Lagos State Appointment
Award-winning filmmaker, Kunle Afolayan has been appointed as a board member of Lagos state council for arts and culture. According to the official letter that confirmed this appointment, Afolayan was selected because of his sterling track record based on the just-released trailer for his new work, Omugwo.
The letter signed by the Secretary to the Lagos State Government, Mr Tunji Bello, stated “In approving your appointment, due cognizance has been taken of your integrity, selfless service and past records of impressive performance. I, therefore, have no doubt that you will bring your wealth of experience to bear on the newly-assigned responsibility and continue to justify the confidence reposed in you by His Excellency, The Governor”
Kunle Afolayan is from Kwara State. He is the son of the famous theater and film director and producer Ade Love. He majored in economics and started out working in a bank while doing some casual acting, before deciding to move into full-time filmmaking and taking a course at the New York Film Academy. He has produced popular titles including: The Figurine: Araromire which was in Yoruba and English languages and Phone Swap which featured Wale Ojo, Joke Silva, Nse Ikpe Etim and the legendary Chika Okpala a.k.a. Chief Zebrudaya Okoroigwe Nwogbo alias 4:30, star of the NTA comedy series of the ‘New Masquerade’ fame (1983-1993). The Figurine won five major awards in the African Film Academy and experienced tremendous success in the Nigerian movie theaters.
The Nigerian-famed actor, director and producer, Kunle Afolayan, appeared at the Subversive Film Festival in 2011 where he represented the second largest film industry in the world, the Nigerian film industry a.k.a. Nollywood, with his colleague Zeb Ejiro. In May 2013, Phone Swap premiered in France at the first edition of Nollywood Week Paris and won the Public Choice Award. Afolayan’s father Adeyemi Josiah Afolayan (Ade-Love) was a renowned Nigerian artist of the second half of the 20th century. Kunle Afolayan is married to Tolu and they have 3 children.
Nollywood Actress Mercy Johnson Gets Kogi State Appointment
Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello, has approved the appointment of Nollywood star actress Mercy Johnson as a political aide in his administration.
A statement on Tuesday by the Secretary to the State Government, Dr. Mrs. Ayoade Folashade Arike, in Lokoja the Kogi State capital said her appointment was effective from 1st of April, 2017. Mercy Johnson was appointed Senior Special Assistant (SSA) to the Governor on Entertainment, Arts and Culture (Okehi LGA).
Including Mercy Johnson’s appointment, the governor also approved the appointment of 63 aides to various offices in his administration.
Mercy Johnson, who charges as much as N2 million to star in a movie, auditioned for her first movie role in ‘The Maid’ in 2004, right after completing her secondary school education. The movie launched her into stardom. Her outstanding performance in the movie also fetched her other roles in blockbusters such as Hustlers, Thy Will Be Done, Sound Of Sorrow, Baby Oku in America, War in the Palace, and many more.
Mercy Johnson Okojie (born 28 August 1984) is a Nigerian actress. The versatile and beautiful dark-skinned Nigerian actress hails from Okene in Kogi State. Mercy Johnson won an award in 2009 for best supporting actress at the African Movie Award show. She also won the Best Actress Award at the Africa Magic Viewer’s Choice Awards in 2013 for her role in the comedy movie “Dumebi the dirty girl”. In December 2013, Mercy Johnson was listed as Google’s Most Searched Nollywood Celebrity.
Her other names are: Mercy Johnson Ozioma and Princess Mercy Johnson-Okojie. She is presently married to Prince Odianosen Okojie (married in 2011). They have three children.
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