Adeolu Adefarasin, Nollywood’s fresh face
You might have spotted him as Nathan in the web series, Skinny Girl in Transit and in the hit film, The Wedding Party, as the groomsman who had an accident and never made it to the wedding. Adeolu Adefarasin is a fresh face in the Nollywood scene and he’s here to stay!
Although Adefarasin seems quite new to the industry, his resume reflects a promising future, as not many actors or actresses in Nigeria actually studied acting as a profession. He explains, “I trained as an actor, having done my undergrad at the Arts University Bournemouth, where I trained primarily for stage before going on to train for one year at the New York Film Academy in acting for camera.”
Guardian Life had a chat with the aspiring actor on his creative process, some embarrassing moments and future projects. Look out for some acting tips!
When did you start your career in acting and what influenced you?
I moved home Christmas 2015 and started my career in TV and film here shortly after. Film has always inspired me, I’ve always been drawn to it and to use it as a tool to effect change. I also believe I have a role to play in improving the nature of the content we are selling; the values being taught and the morals behind stories. Too often now film sets either unrealistically high standards of expectation or makes poor values and bad morals seem cool.
Tell us about your most recent role? How does it feel playing a character that is nothing like you?
Currently I am working on a radio soap, which is definitely a new experience and a fun challenge at the same time. As an actor, it’s easy to get used to using all of your body as a tool for your characters but on the radio, all you have is your voice and that has been a great experience so far. Playing a character who is nothing like me is what I live for. I enjoy diving into the unknown and challenging myself to find truth in something so far from my reality.
Give us a slight breakdown of your process when learning a character?
When I get a script, one of the first things I do after the initial read is make two lists, the first being everything the character says about himself and the other being what other characters say about him. From there I can start to build an idea of the truth of who he is. If some things aren’t true, what could lead people to have that impression? After that it’s simply a case of establishing what the character wants to achieve in the timeframe of the story and finding creative ways possible for him to try and achieve it. Often the most challenging thing is fighting my own nature so I will try to make a drastic change in the character’s physique, how he walks or stands, so I feel like a different person.
Do you have any role models that you look up to?
Within the industry, I have the fortune of being supported by the likes of Lala Akindoju, who has been a great help since I moved back. Richard Mofe Damijo has done an amazing job of creating great work, remaining relevant and being consistent. From outside the diaspora Denzel Washington hugely influences me.
Are you looking forward to this year?
Moving forward I am working on a short film that has been a passion project of mine since I moved back, and it’s finally about to go into production. I am also working on a talk show, I am truly exhilarated about the potential and more information on that will come soon.
Interesting facts about yourself?
I seem to have an interesting knack for embarrassing myself on stage, I’ve tripped and fallen flat on my face in just boxers before the final bow and had the elasticity in my shorts give in, in the middle of a production!
Playing a character who is nothing like me is what I live for. I enjoy diving into the unknown and challenging myself to find truth in something so far from my reality.