Married, Yes. But The Rhythm Won’t Stop For Emem Isong-Misodi
IT was her publicist and long-standing ally, Bola Aduwo who first broke the news of the quiet engagement ceremony between Emem Isong and the handsome Cameroonian, Akama Misodi. A few pictures of the engagement ceremony, which Bola had shared on social media, went viral minutes after. Since the pictures were from Bola, then it is confirmed that the prolific writer and movie producer and one of the most significant female motion picture practitioners working in Nollywood, has been taken and she is now well-married. Congratulatory messages have continued to pour in for the amiable Emem even though some of her colleagues and fans are cross with her that she didn’t put them in the picture. Emem who also runs a training school for filmmaking- Royal Arts Academy, apologizes and assures that there will be time for them to wine and dine during the formal wedding ceremony that will happen anytime soon. She spoke on her new status and career, going forward.
Your fans and colleagues complained that you played a fast one on them and that you surprised them. Was it deliberate?
Well, it was particularly deliberate. But I didn’t want anything big right from when I made up my mind to settle down. I just wanted something small and knowing that we still have the formal wedding ceremony in front, I decided we should quietly get this over with, so we can invite friends, colleagues and well wishers when that time comes. So they shouldn’t be annoyed. We would soon invite them to come and rejoice with us.
When did you meet your husband? There was no gist about you guys dating at all?
Well, that is a story for another day. But actually we didn’t court for too long. We met through a friend not too long ago but as we met each other we knew we were meant for each other. We got talking, we dated and then we decided to go for the long haul and so far so good. I am very happy and I believe he is happy as well.
So how is married life so far and is there a difference now between Emem Isong and Emem Misodi?
Married life is lovely and I am enjoying every second and every minute of it. Besides, there is not much of a huge difference for me, because I have always lived a quiet and reserved life. I am not one who likes publicity. The other thing is that I married a friend who is very understanding. He knows the kind of job I do and understands that I may have to keep late nights or stay on location for days. The only difference now is that I have someone to report and answer to. I cannot just pack my bag as I used to do and then I am off to a location. I now have to plan my trips with my partner and make sure everybody is satisfied before I set out.
So will married life affect the kinds of stories you tell?
I don’t think it will change anything. I will still tell love stories and even deeper stories. At least now I’m in love. I am in love and I have always been known to tell love stories anyway. But occasionally I do tell family-oriented stories even when I was not married but I mean, I will try and achieve a balance now. At least I have kids and a family. But generally, what influences what I do and the stories I write and produce have a lot to do with the environment at the time and maybe how I feel. It just comes and I feel like writing about something and I go ahead and do it regardless of what is reigning at the time.
You keep coming on strong even when people are quitting the scene because of the activities of pirates. What is your staying power?
I will say God and the fact that I am not one who gives up easily. I am very tenacious in whatever I do. Even when I fail or lose in one or two projects, it doesn’t deter me. I like to always keep trying until the very end. Besides, I am passionate about this industry. I didn’t just stumble on it or come into it because of money or the glamour of the industry. It is what I studied in the university, it is what I love doing and what I have always wanted and so if I leave, what else will I do? So the best for me is to improve as I go on. As for piracy, I think the situation is really worrisome and I really don’t know what we are going to do about it. You put in so much and at the end of the day, people are reaping from your work. I pray that we can collectively find a way to handle the scourge.
I can see that women are rising in Moviedom. Don’t you?
Yes, I am very impressed by that development. There was a time when I was wondering why it was only me and maybe three others that were behind the scene. But now we have a whole lot of them that are doing great things. There are those I am encouraging and will continue to encourage.
And now you have branched off into directing?
Oh well, I felt that after 20 years in filmmaking I should try my hands on directing. I have worked with a lot of directors in the last two decades and
I believe that I have learnt a lot from them on the job. But I just decided to try my hands on one of the movies I wrote titled Champagne. It is a feel good movie and an experiment for me and despite the challenges I had in making the film and in spite of the fact that I didn’t get a good timing for the theatrical release, the film still managed to cross the N10 million mark. I was really impressed and I am very happy. So, I will concentrate more on writing and producing but once in a while, I will take up stories I really like and direct. I think I like to see a different interpretation of my scripts.
So what do you have on your plate now?
A movie and then I want to spend so much time with students at the Royal Arts Academy. We just premiered a movie ‘While You Slept’ which I produced with Ini Edo and it stars Ini Edo, Joseph Benjamin, Venita Akpofure and others. The movie will be screened in cinemas from this weekend. Things are picking up at the Academy even though it was very slow from the start. But I believe in it and I will keep pushing.
This year, I will focus on the Academy and work with the students some more. We are also working on getting more facilitators to groom the students. We are introducing a short film competition for the students where we will have a grand premiere of the short films and give prizes to the best three short films. Then there is family to be with and take care of. So, it is a loaded year for me.