BY SHAIBU HUSSEINI
LADI Joy Torty has earned a co-star status with her portrayal of Adaku — a village beauty, who lives in two worlds in the Snake Girl, a film, which bothers on love and bravery -- with Emeka Ike in a lead role. The Plateau State-born actress not only thrilled most moviegoers with her role, she got them bathing her with a number of aliases — one of them, the 'newest jewel' on the turf. In fact, some even predicted that the former athlete, model, beauty queen and product of Mass Communication department of the University of Jos, would make a good act if handled by a good home movie producer. True to predictions, Ladi, the former Miss UNIJOS, has somewhat emerged a screen favourite and an actress that has continued to draw admiration from within and outside the continent. About a month, the near six-footer, who currently enjoys super roles on screen and who won the Miss Northern Universities beauty pageant in 2002, a year after she emerged Miss UNIJOS, was named the Best New African Actress by the organisers of the yearly Zulu African Film Academy Awards (ZAFAA). Moviedom caught up with the actress and apart from posting a one liner to almost all the questions she was asked, the medaled athlete (she got gold medal for Kaduna State in sprint event in the 1998 National Sports Festival) would not discuss ‘matters of the heart’ hard as we pressed.
Congratulations on the award
Thank you. I feel honoured. It made me feel that everyone identifies with the efforts, I have put into the job. Honestly, it made me feel that the industry, the organisers of ZAFAA and my fans, so far, identify with my efforts. I thank them for the award of Best New African Actress. For me, it is a good recognition and I say so, because no one can be in this industry for years and doesn't get a nomination in any award, but when he or she gets one, it has to be in category.
You have been missing in action?
As much as I love to always be on set, I equally consider the script carefully before accepting the job, knowing that there is a lot of expectation out there. That may be why you don’t get to see me all the time.
In her movie pouch
Honestly, I can’t remember the number of the movies I have partaken in so far, but I would have done over 15 movies. And as per the most challenging, I would say every script comes with its challenges and I do my best to play the roles; and according to the dictates of the script.
Most memorable movie outing
I have heard a lot of people say I did very well in the Snake Girl. So many people think so, but I put as much effort in every job I do and have done.
Your NGO on girl child education
Oh no! Unfortunately it’s no longer functioning. I have been too busy to manage it all alone. But I hope to make it better soon.
Why she dumped athletics for entertainment?
For me, what I do is to try as much as I can to achieve my goals in everything I do or had done at a given point in time. Once I have attained my goal, I move on and once I move on to other things, it means I am done with what I left behind. I was done with athletics by the time I hung my canvass for modeling and acting.
Who is she seeing and what is this talk about her and the actor Akume Akume?
Well, first of all, matters of the heart just like the one you have just asked are not meant to be publicised. I would be lying if I say I am not in any relationship, but what I won’t do is to discuss it on the pages of the newspaper. So, for me matters of the heart are not meant to be publicized. As for my big brother Akume, (laughs), I will put it simply: Akume Akume is happily married. He is more like a brother to me and if you see both of us in television soaps or in movies... it's just casting that brought us together and nothing more.
Off the beat, turn-on and off
I do have a daily life and I love nature. I could be in the farm all day and may even choose to ride a horse. That is me. That is just Ladi. The only problem I have doing this, is the feelings of losing my private life. It bugs me. But I like the job, it’s fulfilling. It pays my bills and I thank God. As for turn on, I love happy people and self-centered people irritate me. As for me, I see myself as cluster-phobic. Funny isn’t it? And I would always want to be the woman that I am, giving an opportunity to choose a sex.
I have a forgiven spirit
There is absolutely nothing that you will do to me that I won’t forgive, particularly if the person is so dear to me; absolutely nothing. There is really nothing I cannot forgive.
Saddest moment in life
It was the great loss I suffered on April 16, 1998. That was the day I lost my dad. There was simply no more motivation for me. He stood solidly behind me. So, when he died, I lost interest completely in life because he was a motivating factor.
Wow... I want to be starred in a Hollywood film and to get to the height of my career.
Of course, every young woman wants to settle down. When that time comes, you will sure be the first to know my decision.
Star sign and early schools
I am an Aquarian. I was born in Kaduna, grew up in Kaduna and attended Narayi Primary School.
Most memorable childhood pranks
Hmmm ... I think it is hiding inside the kitchen cabinet and eating what I should not be eating.
Choice of food
I have no particular food choice. What I know is that I eat well and for me, it is not in the quantity, but the quality.
Around and about Nollywood...
Mini-BOBTV promotions content direction
THE need to review trends, business policy and regulatory environment of content in this challenging era of broadcasting, particularly in view of the imminent cut over in Nigeria from analogue to high definition is the reason the organisers of BOBTV have decided on a mini-BOBTV event, scheduled to hold in Lagos, at the Protea Hotel Ikeja on December 8, beginning from 9am. The founder of the BOBTV event, Amaka Igwe disclosed recently, that experts will meet at a round-table to examine content delivery systems in a high definition broadcast environment. ‘This is not another talk shop’, she averred adding that the one-day event shall feature local and international contents available for acquisition in the New Year and an exhibition on the latest technologies for high definition, broadband as well as software. ‘It is more like a promotion of content direction for the New Year and as government is coming out with policy on high definition, we thought it wise to have a chat on that at this point’ she stated.
ION film festival is here … December 9
THE Garden City, Port Harcourt, will come alive from December 9, as the traveling international film festival, ION berths there. Organisers of the touring film festival have confirmed the readiness of the city to host the festival, which ends December 12. Hosted yearly on a new location around the globe with the aim to promote global awareness, peace and unity, the festival is making its debut in Africa. It has been staged in Los Angeles (2007), Dubai (2008) and expected to move to Istanbul in 2010.
NOPA 2009 for White House, Ikeja
ALL is now set for the third edition of the yearly Nollywood Outstanding Personality Award (NOPA) organised by the Association of Movie Journalist (AMJ). Slated to hold at Terra Kulture, Tiamiyu Savage Street, Victoria Island, Lagos, on December 4, the event will see Adim Williams, Chinedu Ikedieze, Osita Iheme, Kate Henshaw, Dagogo Diminas and Johnathan Gbemutor receive NOPA Awards. Other awards will also be presented to deserving people in the industry
Entries for AMAA 2010 still open
THEAfrica Film invites filmmakers to submit their Feature, Short, and Documentary works for consideration by the 6th AMAA, the premier Africa film Awards. Each completed entry form must be accompanied by all the supporting materials listed on the submission forms, including the synopsis of the film, the list of credits, marketing stills of the film, filmography of the directors and producers, 10 DVD copies of the film and proof of the right to submit. Only films produced and released between December 2008 and December 2009 would be entered for the 2009 celebration of African Cinema to be held in 2010. It will be announced in Ghana in February 2010. AMAA will hold on April 10, 2010 and will be televised across the world. Submission forms are downloadable from the AMAA Awards website. For further information, please contact AMAA at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Entries for Zuma Film Festival open
ALL is now set for the 5th edition of ZUMA Film Festival organised by the NFC. Scheduled to hold in Abuja from May 2 to 6, 2010. Call for entries opens on Tuesday, December 1 and closes February 28, 2010. The theme is Global Images, Global Voices, which according to the organisers, seek to consolidate on the gains of previous editions. Emphasis will be on bridging existing gaps between developed and developing film cultures as universal themes and global best practices will be adopted. The focus on the global nature and impact of the film medium will be encouraged during the film fiesta and at the same time platforms for filmmakers and filmmaking nations to globalise their films without losing the rhythms and practices that make their artistic cultures distinctively different will be provided. A statement from NFC said that entries should be accompanied with a two minute trailer must be submitted in three copies and must be on the DVD format with the typed synopsis on A4 paper-size. Submissions, the festival organizers said, would be accepted in the Competitive and Non Competitive categories. The Competitive category includes Feature film, Documentary, Children film, Student film, Animation/cartoon, Short film and Emerging talents while the Non Competitive category includes; films on Nigerian Panorama, Universal films, Diaspora & African films, Retrospectives /Tributes. Interested participants can make enquiries by e-mail to email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org. Similarly, entry forms can be obtained and returned to any of the Corporations offices in Lagos, Abuja, Kano and Jos. ZUMA Film Festival, a major activity of the Nigerian Film Corporation is designed to provide a platform for the recognition and reward of excellence and creativity in the Nigerian motion picture industry and other film cultures around the globe.
Producer- Amebo A. Amebo
Director- Mr. Gossip
Actors- Nollywood Celebrities
Arinze, a true endorser
IF there is any celebrity endorser we know who uses (as in consistent use) the product that he endorses or has endorsed, then it is the President of the Interim National Government (did you ask us what that meant?) of the Actors Guild of Nigeria (AGN), Segun Aina Padonu (aka Segun Arinze). We don’t now know if he was trying to impress waka pass having discovered that he doesn’t do endorsement for endorsement sake. Anyway, waka pass ran into the actor of many credits at an art centre one Thursday and the only thing he didn’t order for at the snack and drink bar was tax clearance certificate (you know he also did something for the Lagos State Tax authority). Come and see our president that day… he first downed the liquid content of a brand in a black bottle and called another order. He then ordered for a bottle of milk that he takes with his family at the beach (in the advert o). But for the actor, Emeka Rollas, who came and hurried him out of the bar, we were cocksure that the actor, who is called 'Black Arrow' by fans, would have placed order for ‘tax clearance certificate’. Well, one waka pass told us he did. We asked him how and he said the tax clearance certificate came in form of a bowl of Ofada rice, which he downed to clear the tax in his stomach. Cari go Presido! It isn’t easy, at all.
An actress in a borrowing spree
ONE popular actress, who is often accused of snatching men, boys inclusive, from her colleagues, has embarked on a borrowing spree since the day she learnt that the actress and show host Tricia Esiegbe has fixed a date for her wedding. The actress, who is from the South East but speaks Yoruba fluently, boasted to a few of her neighbours that she would not only appear at the wedding ceremony ‘powerfully’ but will do so in such a way that Tricia would break protocol to record an episode of ‘Bold Faces’ at her wedding. Although the actress lied that she ordered for the dress she was going to put on at the wedding from London, one waka pass we have put on her case revealed that almost 70 per cent of the attire she is going to wear to the event will be borrowed. In fact, according to the waka pass, the only thing our actress would come to the party with, that is her own, would be her hair and probably her underwear. Anyway, we are familiar with the wardrobe of the people we think she would approach. We wouldn’t fail to mention names if need be. The actress? If you guess right, you would have a chance to dance with any Nigerian international at the wedding reception. No one in the entertainment circle has got much to do with those footballers like Tricia. In fact, we gathered that there was a time that people fingered her for being the cause of woes at one nations’ cup final because of the way she interviewed Joseph Yobo late into the night. But it’s a deal, abi? My email is open.
Benita Nzeribe is back in circulation
NOLLYWOOD acclaimed ‘Bad Girl’, Benita Nnenna Nzeribe, streamed into Lagos from a location in Asaba at the weekend. We knew because we stepped on a text message she sent to someone, who is close to somebody that we know. Benita started the text with 'Thank God, I am back' and ended it with To God be the Glory. We asked one waka pass, who claimed to be close to Benita whether she has made up her mind to return to the convent, but the fellow said Benita has no option at least, not with the way kidnappers have shot without missing celebrities. In other words, since men have learnt to shoot without missing, celebrities have learnt to pray without ceasing. Honestly, this one reach to say: To God be the Glory!