Sunday, 28th May 2023

‘Watching Oprah, Brene Brown inspired me to reate #Withchude’

By Guardian Nigeria
22 April 2023   |   3:54 am
Chude Jideonwo, the founder of Joy Incredible Limited and host of the viral TV show, #WithChude, took to his Instagram page recently to share what led to the creation of the talk show.

Chude Jideonwo, the founder of Joy Incredible Limited and host of the viral TV show, #WithChude, took to his Instagram page recently to share what led to the creation of the talk show. He said this while sharing what he learnt from his conversation with Pastor Bolaji Idowu of Harvesters International Christian Centre. 

In 2017, after suffering backlash and trending on Twitter for days because of his political choice, Chude stumbled upon Oprah and Brene’s conversation on courage. 

On the situation that led to that point, he shared, “I woke up one of those mornings and picked up my phone to find out ‘what are they saying this morning?’ It was horrendous. So, I called a team member. I said, ‘Why do they hate me so much?’ He encouraged me, but he wasn’t really speaking to me. So, I went to YouTube, and I searched for ‘what to do when people hate you’. The conversation that came up was a conversation between Oprah and Brene Brown on Super Soul Sunday.

“I listened to the conversation between Oprah and Brene, talking about courage, what to do when you’re in the arena, and people are attacking you. And I tell you, it healed me, it spoke to me, it just covered me. And I said to myself, ‘Wow!’ I said, ‘Wow, I want to have this same kind of conversation. I want somebody to wake up one day and watch my show and feel seen, heard, and covered.”

He continued: “And that’s where this show came from. It literally came from a place of deep, deep, deep alienation and pain. When I think of the many important things that have happened in my life, many of the most important things in my life have come out of pain,” he added.  

The talk show has been running for over three years and is currently ranked as one of the leading talk shows in the region. Just recently, Nigerian artiste, Iyanya Onoyom Mbuk, widely known as Iyanya, sits with Jideonwo to discuss his career comeback, his reconciliation with Ubi Franklin and relationships on #WithChude. 

Iyanya shared further on the news that broke the internet last year on how he didn’t do anything professionally in 2021. “Don’t get it twisted here, let me break it down. When I said December came and there was no show, it is not that people do not reach out, but nobody is willing to give what you’re worth; they are bullying you. But because you know your worth and believe in yourself, Ubi will say, ‘No’ you can’t do that. Instead of taking it, you just let it go. That’s what I meant. It was crazy and depressing at that moment. You know, you are going to feel it and react to it one way or the other. You are going to transfer aggression. You will act like you are not mad, but you are really mad.

“But having people around to give the positive energy is all you need. So, don’t go where there’s no love. Times like that, the difference between you and another guy is that where there’s love you will be assured of a comeback, but where there’s no love they would say, ‘E don be for you na, go dey do farming now.   

He continued: “So many times, the love won’t come wrapped in a fancy bag, it’s going to be tough. You will think these people don’t like you, but if you can manage your ego, over time you will see that they want the best for you”, he added. 

On relationships and marriage, he shared, “I like to say it has a joke to my friends that one day someone will come out and say you forgot your baby somewhere. To be real here, I pray to God for a beautiful home. It’s not easy because my experiences as a child have made it difficult for me to just settle for anything.

“It’s not that I don’t want to get married or be in a serious relationship, but marriage is scary for me. At the end of the day, you just have to do it, but I don’t stop praying for a beautiful marriage and a beautiful home. When I got into the industry, I still didn’t understand it. So, I was still being the same guy thinking it’s okay to show people your girl, which is fun. After a while, you will realise it is not healthy, especially when you guys have not sorted your foundation out or you don’t have a grip on each other. 

“For example, you fall in love with a female celebrity, and you try to change her. She’s going to be a rebel, because the first thing to her is that she’s the queen out there and you just want to make her a housewife. The same thing with the guys, when you have to sacrifice your shows and tours to focus. It’s a whole lot of things and all I just want to do is to sort out my life before I start bringing a woman into it. I’m just trying to make sure I’m okay.” 

He also shared on the reconciliation with Ubi Franklin, “Ubi and I had settled a long time ago, but you know how it is with social media, they like to blow things out of proportion. Then I linked up with Omini who always hangs out and encourages me that we need to work again. So, he was talking to Ubi and was also talking to me. Then we got back and decided to professionally announce that we were ready to work together again. It wasn’t a difficult reconciliation at all, and that’s the energy that flows from the top to all the branches and the angles. The manager loves the artiste, the artiste loves the manager, and the team loves each other. It’s a lot of positive energy”. 

On why it is difficult for celebrities to be vulnerable, he said, “I’ve a big shout-out to Ubi for making me very vulnerable all the time. Sometimes, it’s very annoying. It’s hard for celebrities to be vulnerable because they’ve shown their vulnerability and shared their experiences with some people, and they’ve been burnt. They got burnt and now they don’t have anybody to talk to.

“For example, you share a confidential matter with someone, and you get to another place to hear it from others. It is a big problem and I say to people, ‘don’t go to where there’s no love’. It’s very hard and tough to be vulnerable but guess what? That’s where the power, the victory, and strength is in.” 
#WithChude is a network of media products across TV, Film and podcasts telling stories that enable and strengthen the mind, the heart, and the spirit. The weekly interviews are widely syndicated across terrestrial television and social media platforms reaching an average of 8 million people weekly – positioning it as the most watched and most syndicated weekly talk show (digital + traditional) in the region.

It has become a safe space for guests to talk about things publicly for the first time. Actor Joke Silva revealed that her husband Olu Jacobs was dealing with dementia with Lewy body for the first time on the show, and producer Kemi Afolabi opened up about her experience dealing with Lupus on #WithChude. That month, Lupus and Kemi Afolabi were among the top Google Nigeria searches.

The interviews have been featured everywhere, from the BBC to the New York Times. The documentary and travelogue series #ChudeExplains has tackled issues from criminal justice reform to Gen Z coming of age.