Wednesday, 7th June 2023

Love in a Pandemic sets the tone for Valentine’s Day

By Eniola Daniel
11 February 2023   |   11:20 am
Take my hand, take my whole life too, but I can’t help falling in love with you- It is another season of love, Valentine, and Love In A Pandemic is a sure movie to ignite the love and enjoy the moment, pluck the roses, and turn the world sweet.

Deyemi Okanlawon (left), Nancy Isime, Uche Montana and Eso Dike during the premiere of Love In A Pandemic in Victoria Island, Lagos

TAKE my hand, take my whole life too, but I can’t help falling in love with you It is another season of love, Valentine, and Love in A Pandemic is a sure movie to ignite the love and enjoy the moment, pluck the roses, and turn the world sweet. Love in A Pandemic captures a love tale which happens amidst one of the most unforgettable moments in human history, the COVID-19 pandemic.

Directed by Akay Mason, the movie follows the story of Bolanle played by (Nancy Isime), a customer care agent who has to work from home at the start of the pandemic. Her boring life worsens when her longtime boyfriend TJ, a doctor, is called to the front lines.

One day, a misdial connects her to a stranger, Alex (played by Deyemi Okanlawon) which stirs up a whirlwind of actions and reactions that will leave audiences on the edge of their seat.
Isime delivers a stellar performance alongside the film’s ensemble cast such as Okanlawon, Eso Dike, Teni Aladese, Uche Montana and Ronke Odusanya to do justice to the storyline of the movie. Movie lovers should anticipate an amazing cinematic experience.

Speaking with The Guardian on his role, Okanlawon said: “I have been more intentional about my career and the role I play since the past 10 years. I do films that are more physical; I have improved my voice, emotions and body. I decided that it is time to be more deliberate about my physique. So, I started working out when I realised that there is a certain role that is best served by a type of physique. So I started working towards the physique and also looking out for those kinds of roles. I was very deliberate and as I took those steps, Love In A Pandemic came my way. And it seemed the universe has brought to my table what I was hoping to see.”

When asked if the role was challenging, he said: “Every role is challenging. So, physically, some roles are more challenging than others, mentally, and emotionally, some are more tangible than others and so every role is challenging.

“I played a role where the intensity of the feeling is not negative. You really have to care. Find a way to really fall in love with the other character. I became Alex and allowed Alex to have feelings towards Bolanle.  After the set, an actor will also figure out how to disconnect mentally from that character, and whatever feelings they had. So, it’s tough. Maybe it will be easier if I was single. Thankfully, I have the most supportive wife; she literally nudged me into acting.”

On what made the project unique, he said: “For me, one of the most beautiful things about Love In A Pandemic is that it actually mirrors true life, the true life people have forgotten. People think love is a fairy tale, that they could close their eyes and fall in love.
“Love is tough. Love is war. Love is a constant battle to remain together and remain committed to one another. We’ve allowed Hollywood and the American culture to make us believe that love is a feeling and once that feeling goes, you are allowed to switch channels, which is in disparity with the vows we took- for better, for worse. Now we’re saying for better and if it’s not better, we better move. This story is a reminder that true love is tough.”

Speaking on his personal lesson from the project, he said: “It’s a reminder that you have to fight for love. It’s a fight to bond and remain bonded together, be deliberate and have the right conversations and communicate the right way and spend quality time together. It is to leave your phone and face each other. Instagram is not your relationship. That, for me, is a reminder.”

Okanlawon described life on set as an unforgettable experience. “Beyond having a great cast, the most important part of a production is the producer. So, I always ask about the identity of who is behind a project before accepting a role. When I heard who was behind the project, I was super excited.”

On how he got on the project, the co-founder, Inkblot productions, Damola Ademola, said it was to show support for the next generation of movie producers.

Ademola, who is also the executive producer of the movie, spoke on how long it took to put the project together, thus: “We have been working on it for years. The pandemic wasn’t just limited to people falling ill; people found love, got married, and found new ways to work. So, there are positives about the pandemic.”

In this article