Deji Adenuga is a big name in Nollywood.He lives in the Republic of Ireland where he has been acting.He is well respected.He is well liked.And he has paid his dues,as he reveals in this rare interview with Citypeople Online.
Please introduce yourself to us and what you do for a living.
My name is Deji Adenuga, an actor and presently Trainee Assistant Director. At the moment, I’m happy to be part of the Crew of a Netflix TV DRAMA Series here in Ireland.
How did acting start for you?
It was a long story that can’t finish without the mention of my dear friend, Prince Dele Odule, who prompted me to go into full time/commercial acting, which resulted into my resignation from the teaching job I had then and relocated to Lagos.
Another name that will always recur in my career story would be, Prince Jide Kosoko, whose warm reception and commendable hospitality I enjoyed as I stepped into Lagos to pursue my acting career. I had been acting though since way back pre-school age through primary… Secondary and the Teachers’ College, where myself and Dele Odule met and became good friends. A friendship of over 40 years, still going strong by God’s grace.
You have been acting now for how long?
Full time acting started for me in 1993 when I moved into Lagos. But if course, I had done so many plays on stage and television in the 80s; which was why Dele felt the need to encourage and prompt me to move into it fully.
How challenging has it been sustaining your interest in acting abroad?
The biggest challenge for me when I got here was that, Ireland did not have a vibrant film industry, even though the practitioners are very keen to be professionals and technically sound; and they attract the attention of Hollywood.
The industry, again as small as it is, it’s very close. I don’t want to be here and still be restricted to Nollywood that cannot bring about collaborations of some sort. As I took my time to achieve my aim, I ventured into festivals and events. This made me to register the NIGERIAN CARNIVAL IRELAND, as a festival that serves as a platform for different cultures to come together and interact.
With my wife, I ran the carnival for 10 years, before Covid-19 came on the whole world. Meanwhile, I have done stage plays here, directed by Irish directors. One of such plays opened door somehow, for collaboration, as we brought the play to Nigeria in 2019 in a cultural exchange programme which we intend to continue with as soon as we recover from the horrible effects of Covid-19.
I was also a pioneer actor in the popular reality show that is still one of the best shows on the Irish TV till date. I had to quit when my wife ventured into politics. But the past episodes still return to the screen all the time.
Where were you born? Where did you grow up? Which schools did you attend?
I was born in Ago Iwoye, Ijebu. That’s where I grew up and had all my Education, from Primary school at Imososi Wesley to Methodist Commercial to Ogun State University; except for when I went to Oru for Teachers’ Grade 2 certificate.