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"Nollywood Likes Me"
Ernest Kanjo / Wednesday, 30 July 2008 06:31
"Nollywood Likes Me"

-          Mbuta Sylvie, Lagos-based Cameroonian actress

syl.jpg Mbuta Sylvie is undoubtedly one of the most successful new generation Cameroonian actresses of English expression, living out of the country. Her exposure to Nollywood makes her Cameroon's  eye in the blooming Nigerian film industry. Yet the actress from Ngie in the North West Province who is 1.55metrs tall and weighs 52kg reserves much for her country. In an  interview with Ernest Kanjo, she talks about her Nollywood experience, her life, other businesses and ambitions.
What is your source of inspiration?

Nigerian movies.

Trace your way into the art

I had my first stint in acting as a Theatre Arts student in the University of Yaounde I where I did stage plays and TV dramas including the famous "Just for Fun" on CRTV. All of these happened thanks to people like Bole Butake, Anne Tanyi Tang, Fai Donatus Vincent Ndumbe, Kwasen Gwangwa'a (of late). I also worked a great deal with Zigoto Tchaya Tchameni.

What motivated your departure to Nigeria?

My quest for a successful career in acting and the fact that not much was happening in Cameroon as far as film making was concerned.

How did Nollywood receive you?

Warmly, I auditioned for roles just like everyone else. I got all the roles I did through genuine auditioning.

Your parcour in Nigeria

I started off in Enugu in 2003, after being handed to Patience Ozokwo, Charles Awurum and Amayo Uzo by Cyril Akonteh, the founder of Splash Networks, a Cameroonian film company. They helped me feature in four movies. I went back to Enugu in 2004 where I starred in a couple of films. Since 2005 I have been living in Lagos.

Who are some famous stars you've worked with?  

Desmond Elliot, Rita Dominic, Richard Mofe Damijo, Stella Damasus, Ini Edo. In fact, almost all of them.

How do you feel working with them?

(Laughs) I considered them demi-gods when I just arrived here. I was their fan and could be spotted taking pictures with them. Today, they are my colleagues. I have my own fans now who get excited watching or meeting me. However, I enjoy working with them.

What has been your relationship with Nollywood stars?

We are pals and we meet on and off set. They all advise me. My closest aid right now is Emeka Duru, a producer and production manager. He's been very supportive.

You must have made much money

(Laughs) I am comfortable. My goal for now is making a name for myself then charge a fee later.

We hear you are chauffeur-driven...

(Laughs) Do you want to offer me a car? It wasn't my priority before, but I will get one soon. Transportation here is hell.

Do you plan to go beyond Nigeria?

Hollywood, God willing.

What else apart from acting?

I am a fashion designer. I do train people on that too.

I am also a model and have done calendars for many companies.

Returning to Cameroon?

Hopefully. I am learning a bit of everything and shining my eyes as we say here. I hope to produce my own movie soon and that will be in Cameroon.



No, single and not searching.

Your advice to youths who want to be like you

They should avoid bad practices such as premarital sex, smoking and excess alcohol. Rather, youths should explore their talents. I know many of them act, they will succeed if they remained committed.

  Mbuta has featured in :

  • Mamush
  • Saving Sarah
  •  Broken Edge
  • Last picnic
  • The Mistress
  • Jardon
  •  Mask of death
  • The wrong woman
  • Without shame
  • And many more


Last Updated on Tuesday, 02 September 2008 12:43
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