Popular actress, Sandra Achums, told OLAIDE ADEKUNLE about herself, her career and what she does on a typical day
Q: How do you start your day?
A: With kids, it’s not easy. I wake up around 6 a.m. and say my prayers. If I have to take the kids to school, I get them ready and even when they are not, I still wake up early, say my prayers, give them a bath and breakfast, tidy up my house and wait for friends who may want to visit. In the absence of that, I go out.
Q: What do you do when no one is visiting and you are not going out?
A: Right now, I’m in school, a German Language school, so, what I do is drop my kids in school and from there, I go to my school from where I close around 1 p.m. because my kids close around 4 p.m. I come back to prepare their lunch, then go to their schools to pick them.
Q: What’s your favourite meal?
A: I love okra and vegetables a lot. Now that everybody wants to be slim, I have to watch what I eat and because I am getting older now, I have added plenty of water to keep fit.
Q: What of drink?
A: I don’t drink but I take a sip once in a while when there is celebration around me.
Q: What makes you happy?
A: Everything around me. My going to the bed at night and waking up in the morning gives me every reason to be happy because some don’t have that opportunity.
Q: Where have you been?
A: I have been in Germany for some time now, six years precisely.
Q: Why did you leave the movie industry?
A: I didn’t leave the industry, I only decided to relocate because if I had been in Nigeria, I would still have been in the industry. But the distance is what has kept me away.
Q: Why did you relocate?
A: Marriage. My husband resides in Germany, so, I had to join him after our marriage and to have kids. Although having kids is not a barrier in acting, I just decided to take a break.
Q: Can’t you act when you are in the country?
A: I can, it’s just that I don’t always have a job to do when I’m around. Even those in Nigeria get called when there is a job for them and it is not easy for me to shuttle with the kids any time I have a job in Nigeria because I may be here for a month or more without anything to do. You know how the industry is now.
Q: What have you been doing in Germany?
A: I’m into buying and selling business to keep busy, but right now, my kids are still very young, so, it’s like I’m busy with them.
Q: How long will it take you to go back to the industry?
A: I can’t really say because if I was around, it would have been easier, but now that I’m in Germany, it’s a bit difficult except I decide to relocate to Nigeria. Right now, I’m expecting a baby, so, I can’t give a definite answer.
Q: Going back to your old days in the industry, what do you have to say?
A: Nothing has changed. It’s just motherhood. I took a break just like Omotola Jalade did to have her four kids before coming back to the industry and likewise others. So, I have taken a bow to have my own family and the only difference is that I’m not here to do one or two acting once in a while. I believe that at every point in life, every woman will want to settle down, have kids, build a home and that’s what I am doing.
Q: Can you still act like in those days?
A: Yes, very well. It’s just that I’m a bit older now, a mother, a wife, but I can still be who they want me to be in a movie. I’m still the same old Sandra.
Q:Why still Sandra Achums?
A: The name has been there for a very long time and after my first experience, I decided to go private about my name.
Q: What do you do apart from acting?
A: Nothing, because acting on its own is a time-consuming job. You have to give it your best unlike now that things are not going well in the industry and people do one or two things apart from acting.
Q: How would you describe Nollywood?
A: It’s just starting and fast growing because actors and actresses are now going places, outside the country. They are now recognised and respected. There is award everywhere to show appreciation for the work they are doing. Nollywood has come to stay, it’s just that it needs to be redefined, made it better and international, just like Hollywood and Bollywood.
Q: Can you recollect any of your works that is most challenging?
A: I did a lot like Domitila, Love Without Passion, Deadly Affairs, Deadly Passion, Love Without Language, Living In The Street and Confession, among others, but the most challenging that I really relate with, not that I don’t relate with my roles, but the one that was really challenging is Love Without Language because at that time, it was new to me.
Q: What’s your advice for up coming actors and actresses?
A: We all have our wants and we take things differently, but no matter what, anyone coming or already in the movie industry should be able to define whatever he or she wants as well as understand his or herself.
Q: Is there any other talent in you apart from acting?
A: The truth is that I have not discovered any because I’m still occupied with my kids. I have not thought of it at all.
Q: How is marriage to you?
A: I’m lucky, I’m happy although it’s not all bed of roses because life itself is not all about good without bad, but so far so good, I couldn’t have asked God for anything better.
Q: What’s the secret?
A: Honesty, understanding and tolerance. It’s like having someone who is like you, who understands you, shares the same idea with you, sees things the way you do, someone like your mother, father, friend, brother, a confidant and above all, a companion.
Q: Any memorable day?
A: Everyday of my life is memorable because it’s not easy this time. So, I’m grateful for the privilege and the opportunity I have.
Q: Any regret?
A: No, I don’t have any because I know before I was created, God knew everything that was going to happen to me. If not, He would have prevented them but every challenge, every trauma, I believe, are for me to move forward.
Q: What attracts you to your friends?
A: I like understanding people, those who are hard working. Those who believe and want to do things for themselves, people of ideas, those who share your dreams.
Q: What puts you off about them?
A: I hate liars because I’m a very straight forward person. I say things the way they are.
Q: How do you relax?
A: I drive round the town with my kids, take a walk, go to the beach to have fresh air or stay at home, run around the house.
Q: When is your bed time?
A: Now that the kids are on holiday, I allow them to enjoy themselves till around 9 p.m., when everyone has to be in bed. By then, I stay with my husband, watch movies, relax with some blues till we fall in.
Q: What time?
A: You want to know? Whenever.