Favour Dike, a Nigerian actor and producer, has been making waves in the Nollywood industry for her exceptional performances in various roles. In this interview with Ediale Kingsley, she shares her journey to becoming an actor, her favorite roles, and her thoughts on the future of Nollywood. She also gives advice to aspiring actors who are just starting out in the industry.
What inspired you to become an actor, and how did you get your start in the industry?
As a child, I had a passion for acting and the arts. I got into the film industry (Nollywood) with the help of a friend. I started as a child actor in Lagos where I grew up, but it wasn’t easy. When my father retired and we moved to Delta State, I discovered that Nollywood had a base in Asaba, which made it possible for me to continue pursuing my passion.
Which of your roles has been your favorite, and why did it resonate with you?
I enjoy playing roles of an antagonizing wife, sister, or friend, romantic and love roles, and those that display African culture and heritage. I feel fulfilled playing these roles because they appeal to me emotionally.
As a Nigerian actor, how do you feel about the representation of Nigerian culture in Nollywood movies, and what changes would you like to see in the industry?
I feel great about cultural roles that portray Nigerian culture because through art and craft, the world around me is preserved and promoted to impart future generations. I would like to see an industry where foreign film industries like Hollywood, Bollywood, and others collaborate with Nollywood to make movies.
How do you prepare for a role, and what techniques do you use to bring a character to life?
I read and study my scripts thoroughly first to understand the artistic interpretation of my role in the story. Then I do exercises like gymnastics, meditation, aerobics, and rehearse at home. The technique I use to bring a character to life is method acting and mind focusing.
How do you work with directors and fellow actors on set to create a cohesive and authentic performance?
I listen carefully to my director because they have the overall picture of the movie. My fellow actors on set appreciate me because I listen, and my performance is always great as a result.
In your opinion, what makes a great movie, and how do you approach choosing roles that align with your values and goals as an actor?
A great movie is one where the acting, directing, writing, cinematography, and overall production value all come together to tell one cohesive, entertaining, and impactful story. As an actor, I pay attention to the entire story when I read a script. It’s not in my place to choose roles but to pay attention to the entire story and choose the script.
What challenges have you faced as an actor, and how have you overcome them to achieve success in your career?
Getting roles in the industry is not easy because many actors are fighting for the same thing, but I work hard to stand out in my performance. Being a black-skinned person also presented challenges, but I followed in the footsteps of veteran actor Mercy Johnson, who faced the same challenges and pushed on until she was accepted.
How do you stay creative and motivated as an actor, and what do you do to continue learning and growing in your craft?
I am a passionate person with a huge vision as an actor, which keeps me motivated. I continue to learn by enrolling in various professional courses that promote my art.
As a Nigerian actor, how do you see the industry evolving in the next few years, and what opportunities do you hope to see for yourself and other actors?
The creative industry in Nigeria has become one of the most lucrative job-creating industries in the country, and I believe Nollywood will continue to grow bigger in the years to come. I encourage aspiring actors to also join in producing because I am also a producer myself. My business name is Black Queens Visuals, and I am doing great so far.
Finally, what advice would you give to aspiring actors in Nigeria who are just starting their careers in the industry?
My advice to aspiring actors is not to focus on making money but to work hard and study more because acting is a craft that demands what you know. Not a place you come in to make money. The money will come when you improve your performance. Now these are some of the movies I have featured in; International tailor, De Arab money, Unholy siblings, Crazy village nanny, Unpredictable, Confession box, Mother’s wish, Hunted by love, The village tailor, Royal Huntred, Odumeje Na Malaysia, Royal Priesthood, Dark December, Six years of marriage, Motherless Mother, Awele