Popular Nollywood actor Totolos, born Emmanuel Ehumadu, has spoken out on recent debates among Nigerian and Ghanaian movie fans over the relationship between Ghana and Nigeria’s movie industries, with emphasis on the supremacy of stakeholders, especially actors.
According to the actor, who has been on Nollywood silver-screens since 1996, “there is no competition between Ghana’s movie industry and that of Nigeria as people seem to suggest.”
He believes that even though Ghana and Nigeria are different countries with different cultures, they both have something to learn from each other.” He, however, said if Ghana’s movie industry has some thanks to give, then it has to give it to Nollywood.
“I must say, it does not take away the fact that Nollywood contributed to the growth of Ghana’s movie industry. Nigeria contributed to the growth of Ghana’s movie industry, in the sense that most of the stars in Ghana got their stardom from doing films in Nigeria movie industry,” he told BEATWAVES in exclusive interview last week.
Even though he would not mention names, totolos indicated it was after Nigeria made stars out of Ghanaian actors that the latter saw the need to do something on their own. “Initially, when Ghanaians started doing their movies, they brought on one or two Nigerian stars to feature in their movies so as to give it some hype. But today, Ghanaians are doing their movies without Nigerian stars and it’s still standard.”
The actor, who has featured in over 50 Nollywood movies, said he is not threatened by the dominance of Ghanaian actors in Nollywood, contrary to claims by some Nigerian bigwigs that they are being pushed out of business.
“Those are speculations and rumours. The fact is I don’t feel threatened, in the sense that Nigeria is big and we do a lot of movies, it is not possible for a few actors from Ghana to totally take over from us and stop us from working.”
Meanwhile, Totolos, who got his name from his martial art class, said he was impressed by the level Ghanaian movies has attained. “Technically, I am impressed. I remember the Ghana movies of some years back and I compare them to today’s movie and I must say I see some vast difference.”
Totolos, who is now a producer, has featured in movies such as ‘Return of the Angel’, ‘In the Line Fire’, ‘My Sweet Sister’, ‘Official Focus’ and a number of others. In his movies, he always likes to be the one to save the world as he always want to be a hero.
Last week, he was in Ghana to work on his upcoming movie and he took the opportunity to attend the premiere of Venus Films’ new movie, ‘4play’.
According to him, he was fascinated by the latest trend in the Ghana movie industry. That, he said, shows the industry is growing and that Ghanaians appreciated good movies.