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Emerging stars of the silver screen

A new generation of talent is emerging in Nollywood. These actors are capturing the essence of storytelling through their powerful performances, and are poised to make a lasting impact in the film industry.
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Moshood Fattah by Adekunle Agbetiloye

With his noteworthy performances in films like “Far From Home” and “Battle On Buka Street,” Fattah has firmly established himself as a force to be reckoned with in the Nigerian movie industry.” My father’s strong influence played a pivotal role in my passion for acting. From a young age, we would watch movies together, exposing me to the best actors. My father’s guidance shaped my cinematic education before I pursued advanced studies at the university,” Fattah told Ventures Africa.

But his talent extends beyond the silver screen to encompass stage performances. He has played significant roles in major theatrical productions. “The depth of my performances goes beyond what people are aware of”, he noted. From his standout performances in stage plays like “Mahatma Gandhi the Great Indian Icon“, Death and the King’s Horseman“, “The Butcher and the Bridge,” and “Fela and the Kalakuta Queens“. Fattah has proved his versatility and ability to captivate audiences on stage and screen.

Since his break into the industry in 2015, he has had the privilege of sharing the screen with renowned actors such as Mercy Johnson, Sola Sobowale, and Funke Akindele, further solidifying his talent and place in the theatre. But behind Fattah’s rise to prominence lies a deep commitment to his craft. His extensive theatrical background has made him develop a strong foundation in acting techniques, setting him apart as an outstanding actor. In 2019, he was nominated for The Future Awards Africa.

As Moshood Fattah continues to make his mark on the Nigerian film industry, we can expect to see him grace our screens with even more unforgettable performances. “As an actor, the measure of success lies in the ability to evoke emotions and deeply impact the audience. If a performance fails to move and connect with viewers, it can be considered a failure,” he stated. 

Genoveva Umeh by Suotunimi Orufa

Much like her performances, Genoveva Umeh’s career has been one of stealth and fine artistry. Although born in Enugu, Nigeria, Genoveva’s acting journey only started after she moved to the UK. She had moved for her studies but discovered a passion for acting. Thankfully, she didn’t let this discovery slip by. In 2015, she decided to attend drama school in the UK, and upon graduation, she returned to Nigeria to make it big in Nollywood. An ambition she would find was not all glitz and glamour. 

The now-in-demand could not land a decent role for the longest time, as she was often overlooked due to her lack of “big name” status. Then, in 2022, Umeh caught her big break after being cast as Kemi in the widely acclaimed Netflix hit, “Blood Sisters.” 

As Kemi, she left viewers in awe with her performance. Hearts skipped beats, jaws dropped, and if you listened closely, you would have heard the industry collectively whisper, “Who is that girl?”. And it wasn’t because her first scene in the movie was somewhat badass (it was a dramatic scene that showed her descending her motorcycle, all dressed in leather). Genoveva’s talent knows no bounds. She possesses a chameleon-like ability to slip seamlessly into diverse roles, leaving audiences amazed and wanting more. She effortlessly embraces the essence of each character, maintaining a unique ability to embody peculiar personas with such authenticity that even the keenest observer might find it hard to separate her from her character. 

These days, the promising actor is gracing our screen as Chika, a health-conscious teen on MTV Shuga Naija and the purple-haired girl next door, Zina, in Netflix’s YA series Far from Home. With her infectious charisma and undeniable talent, Genoveva is poised to make a lasting impact on the acting scene.

Mike Afolarin by Boluwatife Areola

Mike Afolarin is a bundle of energy, charisma, and raw talent; all wrapped up in one dynamic package. He’s best known for his electrifying role as Ishaya Bello (Dr. High) on the Netflix series “Far From Home.” His boundless energy and multifaceted talent have propelled him into the limelight.

Afolarin made his paid acting debut in 2013 in a school stage production. Auditioning for the show, he landed the lead role, igniting his passion for acting. Seeking closer involvement in film production, he took internships behind the scenes, building connections and creating new opportunities. “I spent some time working behind the scenes, which enhanced my understanding of film. I can now grasp camera angles and how movie production works, enabling me to work more efficiently,” he told Ventures Africa.

In 2016, Afolarin committed himself to his acting career, determined to make a lasting impact on the industry. While the journey wasn’t easy, he persevered. He recounted, “My first on-screen role was in 2016, in a movie called ‘Kasala‘. This experience significantly influenced my acting journey, allowing me to work alongside great actors and learn invaluable lessons.”

Since then, he has appeared in “Far From Home,” “Soole,” “Battle on Buka Street,” “Anchor,” and many more. He breathes life into every character he portrays, infusing depth, nuance, and undeniable authenticity. These attributes are a result of his diverse approaches to his craft. “I approach every character differently, depending on the script I receive. Investing time in understanding their unique traits, backgrounds, and motivations is vital to bring them to life,” Afolarin said.

As he continues to take on visionary projects that push the boundaries of storytelling, Afolarin’s future appears remarkably promising. Alongside other emerging talents like Moshood Fattah and Genoveva Umeh, he is helping to shape the bright future of the Nigerian film industry. We eagerly await the exceptional performances they will deliver in the coming decade.

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