Meet ‘sister Maggi’ of Nollywood, Uche Nwakuche Eduzor
She was on duty in Owerri, the Imo State capital, on October 1. The multi-talented actress, Uche Nwakuche Eduzor, was one of the star acts at the Independence Day music and comedy night organised by Ibari Ogwa Entertainment World.
As always, ‘Sister Maggi,’ as Uche is simply called by her fans, shone like a million stars. The Theatre Arts graduate of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN) proved that there was another side to her beyond acting, which is performing comic skits and hosting live shows.
An actress of vast credit, who has had more than a steady run as a actress since she joined the industry in 2007, Uche currently reigns over the Nigerian home video scene. Those who are keen observers of trends in Nollywood, particularly followers of movies produced in the Southeastern would easily point to ‘Sister Maggi’ if you are looking for an actress that should rightly be crowned the princess of the core Nollywood acting skies.
Married, humble and amiable, Uche has continued to earn roles, not only because of her grace, beauty, artistic carriage and devotion to the job, but also because the native of Ihitte/Uboma in Imo State is naturally talented. She speaks about her career and life:
The journey So Far
The journey has been smooth. But let me just say it is grace, passion and determination. I joined Nollywood in 2007 and that was when I did my first movie. Really, I never knew it will start then, as I had given up already, having tried a couple of times before to join the movie industry, but it wasn’t forthcoming. I attended a few auditions, where I was applauded, but at the end of the day, it resulted to their usual story or their popular lines (laughs), “we will get back to you later.”
Today I thank God.
First Time On A Movie Set
It was awesome; there was this feeling of fulfillment. Then, facing the camera was not a big deal for me, like so many people say, maybe because I started from the stage. I studied Theater Arts at the University of Nigeria, so right from my childhood days, I had always wanted to tow that line of profession. I am being driven by passion for the job. I am someone that does not believe in hearsay, because it might discourage or mislead one. I don’t really pay attention to that, the reason I don’t keep many friends. The only slogan at the back of my mind was ‘I have something to offer Nollywood positively.’ I thank God I am here and I thank Him for how far He has brought me.
The movie I consider my breakout film is Cooperate Beggars, but the movie that shot me to limelight and gave me the brand name, ‘Sister Maggi,’ is an indigenous film, titled Ikonso, which was well accepted. From the moment the movie released, I lost my given names and got used to being called ‘Sister Maggi’ by colleagues and fans. So far, I have taken part in about 70 movies. Although I find all my movies memorable, the ones that I hear people talk about easily are, Ikonso, Sister Caro and Cooperate Beggars. In accepting a script, the content and message matter a lot to me.
Growing Up And Early Beginning
I was born in Onitsha, Anambra State, and raised in Enugu, Enugu State, because my father was transferred to University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital (UNTH), Enugu. So, I was raised in Enugu and I attended St Theresa’s Primary School, Abakpa Nike, Enugu. For my secondary school, I attended Marist Comprehensive Academy, Uturu-Okigwe, Abia State, and of course, UNN and then Lagos State University (LASU) for my Masters in Communication Studies.
I come from a family of teachers. My mother was a head teacher and my father a lecturer. So, whatever bad you did then, you received your punishment immediately and that must be the cane, but you had to first recite daddy’s anthem: ‘A little flogging does not pain, it makes me more serious, so help me God’ (laughs). Growing up was all cane, cane, discipline and so on. But I am happy today, because that moulded me into whom I am. I love discipline.
Combining Acting With Being A Wife
It is not easy, but because God blessed me with a husband that understands my career and also likes what I am doing, it is easier and encouraging too. My husband is my number one critic. He gives me notes about my performance and I find that encouraging.
Pains And Gains Of The Profession
Well, the pain is the fact that most people do not appreciate creativity and originality; they want you to follow the norms, forgetting professionalism. I love thorough work and I am passionate about the profession. That is why I will still chose acting again and again, because I have so much passion for it. The gain is when you see your work and people are lavishing encomium on you. I also like it when I hear fans say they have learnt one or two things from our movies. I mean beyond entertainment, theatre and movies should educate, enlighten and edify.
As for my likes and dislikes, I like sincerity and humility. I dislike dishonesty. I don’t only dislike pride, I also hate it. I can’t stand proud people and people who are dishonest.
My career ambition is to diversify and go global in different areas of the movie industry. Yes, directing and producing are kicking off already. Not to worry, you all will be updated. But I have a company I just set up, it is called Rufina Entertainment and my vision and mission is to groom artists and correct certain anomalies going on in the movie industry. At the moment, we are planning to come up with a television series. Once we are done with the stage of concept development, which is the stage we are in now, we will hit the road running.But acting is my world and I a happy to be in it.
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