Top Nollywood actress, Genevieve Nnaji, who’s known to have played lead roles in many block-bluster movies, does not think the role she played in the film adaptation of Chimamanda Adichie’s Half of a Yellow Sun, was as challenging as her previous roles in movies.
Speaking shortly after a private screening of the film at Silverbird Cinemas, Victoria Island, Lagos, Tuesday night which was sponsored by Etisalat Nigeria, Genevieve said, “Half of a Yellow Sun is one of the biggest films I have done so far, but definitely not the most challenging role I have played in movies. I have done a lot more challenging roles in Nollywood.”
Narrating how she felt starring in a film that evokes old memories of the genocidal civil war in Nigeria, Genevieve who was wearing an Escada dress, Chanel yellow lambskin clutch and Christian Louboutin shoes said, it was safer for her because she played the role of a Yoruba woman, where she didn’t need to experience the horrors of the war.
She, however, expressed opitimism that in future, “I’d hope we will tell a different story about the civil war. Then, I will play the role of an Igbo woman, where I will express exactly what it meant to be an Igbo woman at that era.”
Meanwhile, explaining why Etisalat endorsed the big-budget film which starred Nigerian born British actor, Chiwetel Ejiofor alongside other top Nollywood stars, Mr. Matthew Willshere, Acting Chief Executive Office of the telecom giant said, apart from featuring two of its ambassadors, Genevieve and Hollywood actor, Hakeem Kae-Kazim , the film recaptures the Nigerian story. “It’s also one of the best Nigerian films at all times. That’s why we are proud to be associated with it,”Willshere said.
In the movie, the lead character, Chiwetel known as Odenigbo experienced the civil war where he had his life tied, and had to prove true love in the time of war. While the private screening lasted, the audience comprised of corporate Nigerians, politicians and movie goers gave a standing ovation to the producer of the film, Biyi Bandele for a job well done.