It is Diffcult to choose between my Marriage and Career Ronke Oshodi Oke

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No doubt, Ronke Ojo is one of the most popular actresses in the Yoruba genre of Nollywood. Popularly known as Oshodi Oke, the light-complexioned movie star has wormed her herself into the hearts of fans with her numerous A-class performances in the
home video sector.

The actress spoke with on her acting, her bis boobs and marital life.

HOW do you make out time for your family in spite your numerous days on set?
The job is very demanding but I’m able to cope as an actress.

Today, you are in Lagos, tomorrow, Ibadan. At times, I try to deal with that because of my family and I give thanks to God because my family understands my job very well. They Know when I am around and when I am not. And when I am, I concentrate on them. So, we are used to it.

How did your journey into Nollywood start?
I loved watching movies right from when I was young. It’s something I have so much passion for. Besides, I have always loved to be in the midst of people that are happy. I like to be where there is fun. When you are into something that brings much fun, you won’t even remember what you are going through at that point in time.

In the beginning, it was a little bit tough. I came into the industry with a passion for acting. I never knew it would turn into something I can call a job. I used to have a friend, an actress. In fact, it seemed nothing ever bothered them because they were always happy. My friend introduced me to acting. Sadly, she is late.

And did you envisage that you could could go this far?
Initially I was just having fun. I didn’t take it seriously. I didn’t know it was something that could become a career. I was almost everywhere. I was just having fun.

How did you break into the industry is spite of the tough competition in it?
It s God’s doing. In everything you do or in everything you want to do, you must be serious. You must put in the better part of you. In everything I want to do, I have always put in my best. Whenever I am given a script to play a particular character, I make sure I interpret it to the best of my ability. I just enjoy what I am doing.

How successful are you as an actress?
In Nigeria, there is not much money in acting, even in production. It’s still a one-man thing. But we thank God that some corporate bodies are now coming in.

But actresses are buying cars and building houses from acting?
The fact that people are bunding houses or buying cars from it doesn’t mean there is money in it. It doesn’t mean all is well. If you want to come into the industry because of fame or because of money, my brother, you won’t get anywhere. You must come with a passion. The passion is still burning in me and I love what I am doing. I advise those who want to come into it to ensure that it is because of the passion.

Besides the passion, is it possible for you to learn acting?
You can’t learn acting. It has to be in you before meeting those who have been there to tell you how to go about it and also bring out the best in you. Some come because of money and some others also come because of fame.

When they come in they will be like, ‘wow! you guys are doing a great job. This job is so strenuous.’In the end, they won’t be able to cope and will eventually withdraw. But if you have the determination, the passion, you will stay on.

Can you tell us about your educational background?
I attended Unique Nursery and Primary School and had my secondary education here. But I have not gone to any higher institution.

Did you go to any higher institution to study Theatre or acting?

But you are such a good actress. How did you do it?
You know what? I trained as an actress. Some people still have the belief that I can’t even sing. For sometime now, I have been getting comedy roles. Saheed Balogun was the one who told me ‘you can do comedy movies, you can make people laugh.’

It was like okay; let me give it a try. That was five years ago. Since then, I have been doing comedy movies. I have been alternating it, doing comedy alongside normal movies. But now, most of my movies that are coming out are comedy.

Did you have the support of your parents’ support before joining the industry?
Initially, I didn’t have their support. I didn’t have my mum’s support. But my dad was always like; ‘make sure you go back to school.’ He didn’t have the money to send me to school because of financial crisis in the family.

So, I was always crying, telling him, ‘you don’t have the money to send me to school, should I be a burden on you just sitting down doing nothing?’ Along the line, I met some people who helped me into the industry.

What kind of child were you while growing up?
I am the first born and the first girl of my parents. I used to be very quiet. I took after my dad. I don’t fight, but I know how to make people laugh. Whenever we are together in the house, I always make them laugh. Even in the industry I don’t make trouble. I am the quiet type, though not totally quiet.

Can you remember how much you were paid in your first movie?
(Laughs)… I think the first payment I collected then was N40,000.

What year was that?
I think it was in 1997 or early 1998. The producer was an English movie producer.

Most Yoruba actresses are going into production. Is it a status symbol?
I wouldn’t want to say much about that. Our industry is accommodating. There are some business men and other people from other professions who believe because they have the money, they can come and say, ‘can I invest? And how do I go about it?’ Some are doing it because others are doing it.

For me, lam not in it because others are doing it. It is what I love doing. I have been producing since 1999. Between 1999 and now, it’s 11 years and ever since I have not produced more than ten or eleven movies. In other words, I produce one movie every year. I don’t believe in too many productions. It may work for other producers, but not me.

You are quite on the big side. Has it ever deniedyou of anything?
No! I am okay and cool. I have always been like this since I was born. So I don’t think it has denied me anything. Everybody has his or her own load, no matter how big or small you are. It depends on your carriage.

But there is the belief that before you can fit into a particular role you must have a particular body structure?
That is rubbish. African women are always on the big side. There are some 15 year-olds that look 30 because of their big sizes. It all depends on how you carry yourself. For me, I have lost nothing being big and it hasn’t denied me anything because I have always been big. I was born like this and this is who I am.

You have huge boobs. Have you ever been embarrassed by them?
(Laughs)… Before now, I used to hide them. Inever liked the size. I saw them as
Foluke told me I should not hide them because my boobs fit me. She encouraged me a lot. I decided to listen to her and people started liking them. People appreciate them a lot.

Maybe she gave you the advice because she has big boobs like you too?
(Laughs)… I don tknow-o. I don’tknow if she has big boobs. When you see her, you ask her.

There have been so many negative
big boobs. Initially, it wasn’t like that. Foluke told me I should not hide them because my boobs fit me. She encouraged me a lot. I decided to listen to her and people started liking them. People appreciate them a lot.

Maybe she gave you the advice because she has big boobs likeyou too?
(Laughs)… I don t know-o. I don’t know if she has big boobs. When you see her, you ask her.

There have been so many negative write-ups about you. Why is this so?
Whatever they are writing doesn’t move me anymore. I am used to it. Don’t forget they must sell their papers and there must be something to wnte about.

What do you have to say about the insinuation that your marriage is going through a turbulent time?
If there is any turbulence in my marriage, it’s what happens on a daily basis. It’s just because we are known faces. Actually, I don’t have any problem in my marriage. My marriage is intact. Even if my marriage is having problems, whatever anybody says, it is none of my business. It doesn’t change me and it doesn’t derail me. I will still be myself. It happens on a daily basis.

There are so many marriages crashing now. So many marriages have crashea today. Another one is going to crash tomorrow. So many marriages crashedyesterday. Even if it is true, it is not a big deal. It is what happens on a daily basis. It happened when Jesus Christ was alive. That you are having problem in your marriage doesn’t make you a bad person. If that is what people say, well I don’t care about that. And there is one thing I will always say about such people.

Whoever writes good or bad things about me, I will always say, thank you, because it means I am still relevant, because if you are not relevant today, nobody will say or write anything about you.

How true is it that you snatched your husband from his wife?
My husband was never married and has never been married. Both of us just got married two years ago.

But we heard he was with another woman who had a child for him before you came in?
Oh yes! He has a child and I have one, too.

You had a baby out of wedlock. One would have thought that you would want to marry the father of your baby…
Yes, I had a baby girl but I didn’t marry the man.

How come you have a kid for a man you didn’t get married to?
There is a difference between having a baby for someone and getting marriedto that person. You can t have baby for somebody if you don’t love him. It s not as if I hate the father of my kid. I like him. He is still my friend. He lives abroad and I live in Nigeria and I can’t live abroad because he doesn’t want to come to Nigeria. That was what happened, nothing more.

There was no formal marriage before having the kid for him?
No, there was no formal marriage.

What if he changes his mind and decides to come back to Nigeria and spend his life here with you?
Ahhh! Na wa oh. That would be very strange.

What if he relocates now?
I am still married. I am a married woman now. You can’t marry two men at a time. It’s not possible.

Why is it that there are so many negative write-ups about you?
Even the public knows that most of the things they write are not true. They just pick up their pens and write whatever they want to write just because they want to make money. But they no longer bother me.

Have you ever been moved to tears because of a negative story?
Not at all! I remember a friend telling me when I was coming into the industry to, ‘come with extra shock absorber.’ It has worked for me. I am not moved in anyway.

How will you describe your relationship with your husband’s family?
My husband is my first son and we are blessed with two children. My stepdaughter now lives in London and my daughter is a year older. We are a close family.

How true is it that you don’t have a good relationship with your stepdaughter?
No, we stay together. We used to stay together, but she is now based in London.

How do you have time for your husband?
We have had problems over the years. This is our 11th year together. We just got married two years ago. It has been an off and on thing. But he knows me better now. I knew him before I had my first child. But now people say nonsense and strange things just out of jealousy. At times, they ask him: ‘why did you have to marry an actress?’

But your husband’s family didn’t express any kind of reservations about their son getting married to an actress?
They knew me when we started going out. But the fame wasn’t as big as it is now. So they know the kind ofperson I am. I am a very simple person. I didn’t really have problem with them. But as time went by and some of these negative reports about me started to appear in the papers, I tried to explain to them. They are human. They understand.

And your husband doesn’t react to the negative reports?
He is used to them. They don’t bother him. He knows the kind ofperson I am. If you ask my husband now, what I am doing, he will tell you.

Has he ever tried to pull you off the screen?
Before we got married we had an agreement.

What was the agreement?
He knows that acting is my life and if you want to marry me, you have to marry me with everything that comes with me.

Does your husband react to the romantic roles you play in movies?
I play romantic roles? Yes, but there is a limit to everything. I don’t do it to the extreme.

I am talking about myself. Acting is make-believe. It’s not real. We have culture in Nigeria and our culture doesn’t permit us taking it to a particular extent.

Do men still make passes at you despite your marital status?
Of course!

Between career and marriage, which would you choose?
I am not praying for my marriage to go-o. I love my marnage. I love myjob too. I love both. If I were to choose? Let us not talk about that.

What if you find yourself in a situation where you have to choose between your career and your home?
I wouldn’t like to find myself in that situation.

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