#GSBMeetTheStar: Adeoluwa Akintoba on His Acting Journey, What Brings Him Joy Everyday, & Being a Fine Guy!
In this edition of “Meet the Star,” a segment dedicated to shining a spotlight on emerging talents in Nollywood, Adeoluwa Akintoba talks to us about his early love for acting, his experiences on set, his role in A&R for ATK Records LLC, and the challenges and rewards of embodying complex characters in his films.
For our previous feature, we had a chat with Uzoamaka Onuaha who shared insights into how her upbringing laid the foundation for her acting career, her role in “Diiche,” and even revealed which celebrity she’d swap live with for a day. You can read it here, in case you missed it.
Adeoluwa Akintoba is a Nigerian actor who is quickly rising through the ranks of Nollywood. He is known for his meticulous performances and his ability to bring even supporting roles to life. He discovered his love of acting at a young age and was often involved in church and high school drama productions. He continued to act in college, but it wasn’t until after he was laid off from a radio job that he decided to pursue acting full-time.
Akintoba’s breakout role came in 2021 when he starred in the film “Prophetess.” He followed that up with strong performances in the films “Sista” and “Slum King.”
Hey Adeoluwa! How are you feeling right now? Describe it in three words.
Grateful, Ecstatic, and Blessed.
So, who is the Adeoluwa that exists beyond our screens?
Adeoluwa is pure life and energy. I’m smart and good-looking, and I always want to see people happy. I don’t like seeing people sad around me because life is beautiful, and I believe we shouldn’t spend a moment being sad, so I’ll do what I can to bring a smile to anyone’s face. I also love food, and thankfully I don’t gain weight from eating a lot, so big thumbs up to God for that. I’m ageless, literally and figuratively. I’ve had the face since I graduated high school (I might just be a vampire). Who knows?
Hahaha! When did you first fall in love with acting, and how old were you at the time?
As a kid, I always did church dramas. I already had a flair for them. I remember going on errands for my mom, and I’d start acting like I was in a movie and seeing people on my TV screen and wishing I was them. Around 8/9 at this time. Being in those dramas helped me build confidence in myself because it was a major lead role I’d be getting.
Tell me about your first film role. How did it feel to be in front of the camera and on a real set?
My first film role was on the set of “Double Ransom.” A Christian film by Made by O’Fresh, shot in 2017, has clips from the set, and I laughed because my acting was horrible. My first time on a Nollywood set, though, was Prophetess. I was playing Osaze and also doubling as the costume assistant. Being in front of the camera for a role as big as that felt like home like I knew I was meant for this and I was doing it.
I noticed from your Twitter bio that you’re into A&R for ATK Records LLC. How did that come about, and how is it going?
My brother, Akintunde Adesokan, also known as AkTheKing, and I have shared a deep bond since childhood. Our parents got married on the same day, and from that moment on, we’ve been more than just friends; our connection is like that of brothers. In 2017, he ventured into music, and he needed someone who would always provide honest feedback about his songs. I was the perfect fit for this role. Even before his record label released any songs, we would sit down and thoroughly discuss the message behind each one and what we aimed to convey. If the music doesn’t resonate with me upon first listen, he wouldn’t want to release it until it’s perfect, knowing that I have a discerning ear for music and sound. We are planning to release his album in the coming weeks, so everyone should get ready for ‘Another Warrior Has Come’ by AkTheKing.”
What was it like working alongside Kehinde Bankole, Deyemi Okanlawon, and Bisola Aiyeola on “Sista”?
Honestly, it was an amazing experience because, at the time we were shooting “Sista,” the majority of the older cast had already been nominated for Amvca, the director included. It just made me feel and know that my nomination and award are around the corner. I enjoyed working with the director and Aunty Kenny, especially because the energy we shared while filming “Sista” was pure and special. Deyemi, because he was constantly giving me tips on how to be a better actor and how to brand myself, which I picked up a couple of stuff from, and it’s some of what has helped me.
Were there any unexpected feedback or reactions from viewers about your character in “Sista”?
Honestly, when I think about it, no, everyone resonated with the character and loved it so much.
Congratulations on the premiere of “The Slum King”! How did you prepare for that role?
Thank you. Edafe is one of the most challenging characters I’ve had to prepare for, especially in the mental space of the character. I read the script three times so I knew his beginning and end perfectly, and I also had to research trauma, work more on my facial expressions and use my eyes more, and also learn how to talk to myself because the character sees his dead family members. That was a tough one because, at a point, my cousin thought I had gone mad, but I had to let him know it was just the character. The character tested my abilities as an actor, and I’m grateful it all came out well.
And how do you handle it when a role you’ve played comes to an end?
It depends on the type of style I used to develop the character. For Edafe, I had to wear him, so taking him off was a bit of a tough one because, as I remember after shooting, there were days I’d just be crying uncontrollably. I also have a totem that helps me connect to my real self so that also helps.
Is there a filmmaker you’ve recently learned a lot from?
Mr Niyi Akinmolayan He’s always ready to push the bounds of filmmaking, especially in Nigeria, and I love that. Also, Adeoluwa Owu (Captain Degzy) and Barnabas “Barny” Emordi. Their work rate inspires me a lot, and they both have quality and quantity when it comes to their resume. That’s what I want for myself.
What’s something in your everyday life that brings you joy and excitement?
Plantain Chips and Food, and also getting to relate to people, there’s a lot that can be learned from human experiences.
When you’re not working, how do you unwind and detach from work?
I honestly just find a series or film to binge and also play games, but as I’m binge-watching the series or films, I’m noticing certain characters, their nuances, and what they’re doing. This just helps me to become better at my craft when I’m called upon.