One-on-one with Genny Uzoma
Ever since she joined the movie industry, fast rising Nollywood actress Genn Uzoma has continued to build on her profile, having featured in a couple of movies. Just recently, she was part of the cast of Husbands of Lagos, which has raised her profile. In this interview, she spoke about her life as an entertainer and future ambitions.
I’m just your typical girl next-door, but with a twist. I’m from Imo state but born and raised in Enugu State. I’m the second girl and child from a middle class Christian family of six.
Foray into the world of movies
Well, I joined the Actors Guild of Nigeria the Enugu chapter at the age of 18, whilst in the University. I had also been really good with the arts, literature and English and participated in plays such as The Incorruptible Judge, She stoops to conquer and others in secondary school. I saw acting as beautiful and fascinating and I wanted to join up. I remember I had to borrow money to register as I couldn’t tell my parents about it then and the guild wouldn’t let me audition without being a member. I was mighty excited about it; I couldn’t believe I was sharing the screen with my idols and role models, though it were little roles I got then. We used to call it ‘executive wakapass.’
Life outside acting
I acted till I went for NYSC; I remember the last movie I filmed, Lumba Boys, directed by Ifeanyi Onyeabor, I was still serving. But then, right after service, I got a job with a telecommunication organisation and I decided to work for a while before coming back to the industry. Working for a while turned into six years before I finally summoned enough courage and banished my fear of the unknown, resigned and then came right back to entertainment.
I felt unfulfilled and unhappy especially at the end days at my white-collar job, but it wasn’t all in vain. I acquired some great skills in marketing and sales, also in customer service both at the call center and the office floor. I was actually really good at the job and emerged best customer service agent of the month for my team severally; I have the certificates to prove it. So, I would say I have something to fall back on. I’ve modelled a few products for some companies and I’m looking to do more. I mean, there are bills to be paid, so anything that brings in the dough as long as it’s legitimate.
I love acting with more experienced seasoned colleagues as I learn more from them and I like spontaneity. Acting isn’t dressing up; it’s stripping yourself bare so the audience can feel the emotions you are trying to show. A good director that knows his craft will motivate/push you more into doing it right; some would just leave you to act, then say cut after the scene and move on to the next scene. Sometimes, a little more push brings out more from the actor.
I’ve been in a lot of movies and yes I’m also on the look out for more roles that would push my face out there. I’m a hundred and one per cent confident of my talents; the raw talent is definitely there. I also nurture and build it up by reading acting books, taking some acting courses online and picking up tips anywhere I can to improve on my craft
I’m a good photographer; I have a good business side to me and I write pretty well.
Marriage and acting
I don’t think anything else will make me quit entertaining God willing, certainly not marriage. I pray God gives an understanding and accommodating person in the first place, else I can’t be with him.