Here’s Why Omotola Jalade-Ekeinde Played ‘Deep’ Sexual Roles In Her Last Movie
Speaking with PREMIUM TIMES, Omotola opens up about her career , marriage and playing a controversial character in Alter Ego.
Actress Omotola and mother of 4 , is back to Nollywood following a three-year hiatus.
The delectable actress is set to debut in a new movie , titled “ Alter Ego ”, alongside Wole Ojo and Jide Kosoko .
Speaking with PREMIUM TIMES,
Omotola opens up about her career,marriage and playing a controversial character in Alter Ego.
PT : You went off the scene for three years. Was this deliberate ?
Omotola: Yes it was . I knew I was going to embark on a break so I starred in a few movies, which have not been released. I shot Blood on the Lagoon with Teco Benson , and another one in London called Amina , which are yet to be released. I got to that point when I felt like nothing was challenging me anymore and I began to feel like my standard was dropping. I went through that period and I knew I needed to stay away and wait for Nollywood to catch up with some of our ideas.
PT : Your fans can ’ t stop talking about your sex scenes in Alter Ego. Was your husband comfortable with you playing the role?
Omotola: Some of the sex scenes in Alter Ego were downplayed because I ’ m married . But I won’t play the sex scenes if it wasn’t necessary to be included in the film . I know by starring in this movie that my fans would either hate me or love me forever . While shooting the film , I knew I was doing something quite risky.
There are several ways to shoot a sex scene tastefully. I ’ m all for playing a sex scene convincingly and my husband knows this . I tell my husband ,
“You know what darling , you married an actor ”; and secondly, he is my biggest fan. I tell him , “Do you want me to be great or do you just want me to be good ?” He will say , “I want you to be great , sparklingly great” . Then I ’ ll say, “ Ehen , we go love o ” and he ’ s fine with it . He understands but just like every other human being and the professional that he is , he too wants to be convinced that I played a sex scene because it was necessary . I know when he watches movies sometimes he would say , “Did they have to kiss if they were not going to kiss well?”
PT : You got pretty raunchy with your co- stars in your latest movie , Alter Ego . Are you ready for viewer ’ s criticisms ?
Omotola: When I wasn ’ t even confident, I starred in a movie called a prostitute, which was released 22 years ago . If I didn ’ t die then , is it now ? I ’ m ready .
PT : Playing a believable sex scene would mean going extra lengths. Do you think Nigerians will embrace such films ?
Omotola: You don’ t even have to “chop” somebody’ s mouth if you don’ t want to . If the scene is not about you showing real mad crazy love then you can ’ t now be showing mouth to mouth kissing or removing of clothes.
In Nigerian movies, we have downplayed chemistry . I hope we can bring that back. Back in the day when I shot Mortal Inheritance in 1995 , I had to spend time with my co- star , Fred Amata. He was already a renowned director and in those days, directors were revered .
So imagine , my director who had directed me in a movie prior now acting as my lover.
I was really afraid but we broke the ice by spending time with each other . So, he demystified himself and we had chemistry and you could tell . So, I ’ m hoping all of this returns to Nigerian movies. So, as professionals, we need to ask ourselves if it is necessary for a movie to have a sex scene and when it is , it should be done well.
PT : With regards to Alter Ego , how were you able to build some on – screen chemistry with your co – star , Wole Ojo ?
Omotola: I was working with Wole Ojo for the first time , so we had to spend time together and we played very rough . I understand the power of being friends with your love interest in a movie so we became like a couple .
We ate together and basically just broke down the walls to make sure we were both comfortable with each other and have each other ’ s backs and interest at heart. So , it spilled into the movie without you even noticing .
PT : Alter Ego appears to be the first Nollywood movie to truly address Post -Traumatic Stress Disorder. Do you think it would appeal to the Nigerian Nollywood audience ?
Omotola: We don’ t talk about PTS that much in Nigeria, so, when you see someone that is mentally traumatised , the first thing that comes to your mind is , “this person is crazy !” . We don’ t talk about depression in Nigeria. We don’ t talk about how it affects children , especially those that have been abused.
When you ask a lot of adults, you might find out that some people have been abused as children . And if we want to tell ourselves the truth, how many of us were actually able to tell our parents about this ?
In Africa, it ’ s always a taboo to say , “uncle, somebody touched me” . They will practically ask you one million questions. “ What did you say to him ? How were you sitting ? What were you wearing ?” As if it ’ s your fault , you become the victim. Alter Ego sets out to address how sexual abuse affects victims as kids and as adults.
Sometimes , you see people as adults behave in a certain way , but because we have not diagnosed this problem – because in Africa, you are either just crazy and should go to Yaba Left ; but we don’ t think about the fact that people actually have psychological trauma and that PTSD actually affect Africans . We think it ’ s an Oyibo disease.
PT : Why were you drawn to Alter Ego?
Omotola: It ’ s the soul of the movie . It must come quickly in a movie and must also be underlining throughout the film . Some come naturally while some don’ t. The movie got me on time because I switch very quickly ; so if I read through the first 10 pages of a movie script and I don ’ t get the story, I get bored . I loved the film from the beginning but it was a diamond in the rough . I knew what was lacking in it . So , I called the director and told him we will have to tear the script apart and rebuild it and he gave me his nod . It takes a big mind to shoot Alter Ego .