Lilian Amah-Aluko is an actress, producer and vice president of the Association of Movie Producers. In this interview with P.M.Entertainment, she speaks about her career and the make-believe industry Tell us how you started and the journey so far
Thatís a very long story. Well, I started in 1996 with RMDís Out of Bounds. That was my first and since then I have been working here and there in several movies, soaps but Iíve never really done as much as I should have done, giving the time frame because I have been working full time as a banker as well as part-time acting. How have you been able to cope?
I work with producers who can accept my timing and also when Iím on vacation. For example, when I was on location for Doctors Quarters, I had an organised schedule. Then I could go to work; when Iím on set, I would go to location, do my bit and for that, we had a specific location made for the project. So it was easy. I quit banking in 2005. Since then, I have been on my own. Since you do soaps and movies, which do you do more?
Right now, in the last few years, I think I have done more soaps than movies. Why?
Thatís the one that comes my way. Some people would say soaps are better than movies financially. So why do you do soaps?
No. I wonít say that, but movies are easier. You go on location and between two and three weeks, you are done. This project, for instance, is about four or five years now, here we are and still working on the same project. So soaps take a longer time. Over time, you earn more money but for me, thatís really not the attraction. It depends on the story line and the character I am asked to play. It also depends on who is behind the job. That is what I consider before deciding whether to take the job or not. Does your background, as a banker, influence your career?
None that I can say now. The banking world is totally different from acting. There is no way it can help me, but may be as a producer, yes. The contact I have made, if Iím trying to raise fund or look for brands to work with me, yes. People who I knew as a banker then could be of help but as an actress, I donít see what they can do for me. How many movies have you done as a producer?
As a producer, I have done one movie but as an actress, I first did Hit And Run. That was co-produced by Emem Isong. I did Sweet Revenge. I also did that with Emem and my very first one was She is A Devil. After She Is A Devil, Iíve done The Triangle and Jungle Light too. With your wealth of experience in Nollywood, as a producer and actress, how do you rate the standard of movies at the moment?
In the last three years, I would say there has been a lot of improvement. We now have a lot of producers who are interested in the quality of their works. We have people who are looking at better story lines, better equipment and there have been a few productions where you will have Nollywood people mixed with other people outside (Ghana and Kenya). All these are improving and I believe that in another two years, it will be totally a different sector. For sometime now, there is this insinuation that the Ghana movie industry has improved more than Nollywood. Do you subscribe to this?
Certainly not. I have a lot of respect for our Ghanaian counterparts but anybody saying they are more improved certainly knows what heís saying. Nollywood, when you talk about it in West Africa, still has the top spot. Other people are trying to come along. What about equipment?
In every aspects. I have seen a couple of Ghanaian movies, Iím not saying they are not doing well. They are trying, they are doing well, but I repeat, they are not better than Nollywood. We taught them how to make movies.
At a time, they were giving some conditions to Nigerian actors who wanted to go into Ghana to act and Nollywood reacted and tried to bar some of them too.
You see, all of these are politics. My personal opinion is that the Ghanaians felt threatened. A lot of them were spending more time working in Nollywood because they were getting jobs and being paid a whole lot of money. I know a lot of them were asking for between $5,000 and $7,000 and they were getting it, but they canít get that much in their country. What their producers tried to do with Nollywood actors was just to cause disaffection but I think that has been taken care of. Is it true that Ghanaians get paid better than their Nigerian counterparts even when they are working on a film here in Nigeria?
I have not employed any Ghanaian actor on my set, so whatever I am going to say is not first hand. But if you look at every other industry, expatriates get better pay. So if Ghanaians are getting better pay here, I will say it is because they are expatriates in that situation. When Nigerian actors too go to Ghana or Kenya to work, they get paid better than the local actors. It is not because they are better; it is due to the expatriate factor. Are you satisfied with the level Nollywood is now?
Definitely no. There is a lot that can be done to improve things in Nollywood. But I believe with time, we will get there. What do you think is the problem?
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Lalaland | 6/2/2012 2:36:30 AM
Nollysheitwood is crap and will always be crap! Mtchew! Reply this thread
crystal | 6/2/2012 6:43:14 AM |
u're very correct madam, bt whether expatriate or nt, no Ghanian star earn beta than a Nig top star both home and in Ghana.
Vanilla | 8/6/2012 6:11:07 AM |
Then why did Ghana start using Nigerian producers???.... like duuuh!!!
Lilspicer | 6/2/2012 2:41:49 AM
Truly nobody beat nollywood for film makin ghana go soon beat una remember say oneday boyboy go be oga..make una improve jaree....nfc una to dull for current news go to www lindaikeji .blogspot .com Reply this thread
Angel | 6/2/2012 4:23:25 AM
Of course Nollywood thought Ghanians film making..... but it doesn't really matters now. Ghanians are also doing well in their own way. Reply this thread
Jim | 6/3/2012 2:58:32 PM |
Ghana started the movie industry first, so how can Nigerians teach Ghanaians. Personally I like them both and I think all movies in west Africa should be united under one umbrella nollywood. So west Africa can be leading movie producing region in Africa. Ghanaian Are blended with nollywood movies anyway.
Edd | 6/2/2012 5:07:19 AM
Absolute nonsense. Who taught who. Stop publishing falsehood.
Volumes dont mean quality. Reply this thread
Nora | 6/11/2012 3:08:25 PM |
So also lack of volume don't mean quality.
And ingratitude from Ghana to Nigeria ,like biting the fingers that fed you will lead to your extended hunger!
sparks | 6/2/2012 5:33:19 AM
u taught Ghanaians so wat absolute r*****h Reply this thread
Justme | 8/5/2012 4:01:16 PM |
Alima | 6/2/2012 1:06:28 PM
luk @ dis damn blasted lier woman talking from her bushy anus, did u check the records b4 coming out with dis holy lie? do u know when the first movie Heritage Africa was produced ih Ghana? then u pple were not even doing soaps not to talk of plays, lier woman, stop being economical with the truth. Reply this thread
PPG | 8/5/2012 4:37:39 PM |
Firstly, insulting anybody like this is wrong not to talk of a woman far passed her middle age. That is how I know the difference between Nigerians and Ghanaians. Apart from the accent, Nigerians are always preetier and not as black as Ghanaians, you can't catch a Nigerian insulting an elder one no matter how old. Though they are vicious when it comes to their country's matter they have much more respect for people than Ghanaians. Also, what the woman means by Nigeria thought Ghanaians movie making is that before Nigeria came into the picture, Ghanaian movies were drab and that is the truth. Ghanaian movies became better when they started using Nigerian producers and Nigerians began acting with them. I don't watch full Ghanaian movies because there are always s*x scenes,it's disgusting. Most times they give the dumbest reason for having s*x in the movie. If I also want to be truthful, Nelson and Apiah aren't anything close to Omotola and Genevieve who were on the front page of Forbes magazine, no Ghanaian artiste has ever been on Oprah's show. In Africa, nollywood is still the most significant... I didn't know about Ghollywood(funny) until I came across this page so did my friends....:-P
olu | 6/2/2012 1:10:18 PM
madam let's lay the facts bare, it is true that Ghana started movies b4 Nigeria bt Nigeria over took them, so nxt time pls get ur facts write b4 u come on such platforms to open wide ur mouth. Reply this thread
Salam | 6/3/2012 1:18:18 AM
Ghana will always be a shining example in africa whether in movies ,music,football,democracy and peace.we like other nationals unlike naija ppl who think they are superior to other nationals.apart from your population what can you boast of as a country 4*9,fraud voodoo,occultism,boko haram,or witchcraft?BUNCH OF UNCIVILISE PEOPLE metcheeee Reply this thread
Moi O | 8/5/2012 3:57:29 PM |
To be sincere, everything you mentioned is right there in Ghana except boko haram which is a terrorist group, a branch of al-queda made up of people from different parts of the world. They are not restricted to Nigeria so don't criticize them with boko haram. As for the fraud, voodoo, withcraft, occult etc they are definitely in Ghana so stop calling kettle black.
Biscuit | 6/3/2012 11:32:33 AM
See dis God 4saken ugly old anhus licka.abeg madam wateva ur name is,plz get ur facts rites b4 runin ur maf lyk u ve diarrhoea of de maf nd constipation of de brain. Ghanaians wer de 1st 2 make movies ok. Reply this thread
O0o | 8/5/2012 10:44:56 PM |
This is tooo bad, you really lack respect. No Nigerian will say/write these sort of things especially to an elder. You could have written what you wanted without being so vulgar, abusive and uncivilised. Nigerians I've met are respectful. What you have done is really really bad.
Ekow, Accra | 6/3/2012 3:11:43 PM
It's very true that Nigeria is currently doing better than Ghana but it's never true that Nigeria taught Ghana how to make movies, Ghana started making movies long before Nigeria started. See i love Nigeria movies as well as Ghana movies and i guess both countries are doing great. My favourite Nigeria actor is Chiwetalu Agu Reply this thread
maame | 6/3/2012 5:18:59 PM
Utter nonsese to say nigerians thought ghanains film makingam u r very s****d.
Why r nigeriaans so jealous of ghanaians
1. We r a smaller nation with way better reputation
2. Our land is saver and more ppeaceful something all that blood money in nigeria can't buy them and thus why theyy r moving to ghanaa for peaceful nite sleep.
3. Are. Educated are more eloquent and articulate than even a nigerian with 100 degrees. We speak better than u, way better. R well educated like john dumelo and majid speaks better than the average nigerian actor or actress trying to fake their accent in every movie.
4. Ouur kidss make it in spelling bees in USA cos our accent and english is better. A nigerian kid will never make it to the spelling.
5. Nigerians r known globally as thieves, killers, arm robbers, ritualist and 4*9ers and every nation has blaclisted yo ass
Yes u got more money than ghana but u will never be us. We are peaceulf humble and our nation has a better reputation. Youu wish u were us.
And just for the record Frank Arase and Abdul mumuni are not ghanains. They can never be no matter how hard they try - they r nigerians scheming their wayy in ghana. Reply this thread
N_girl | 8/5/2012 11:07:11 PM |
Though what you wrote is long there's just one thing I want to say; there is no single Nigerian that is jelous of Ghanaians. In as much as we're going through Boko haram crisis which is neither restricted to Nigeria nor caused by the citizens and corrupt government there is no Nigerian that wishes to be a Ghanaian. I wouldn't say more. Very few Ghanaians would understand what I'm saying.
Abu | 6/4/2012 4:30:44 AM
Nigerians taught Ghanaians the art of movie making, total hogwash,pls interviewees should check their facts before making irresponsible statements, with all this crap movies being churned out by Nollywood how can this naive woman come make such a statement, technically Ghanaian movies are better than Nigerian movies, it hurts but that is the fact, making over hundred movies in a week doesn't make you better, you only get better when you focus on the quality. Reply this thread
akeem | 6/4/2012 6:39:32 AM
1 in every 3 nigerian you meet is a thief.
1 in ever 2 nigerian you meet have bad body odour - especially the yorubas. Reply this thread
sally | 6/5/2012 12:20:44 AM
f*****h talk,i thought u hve manners as producer.am a nigerian and i dont tolerant such boos**t. Reply this thread
Richie | 6/5/2012 4:34:09 AM
Who told u that nigeria taught ghana how to make movies apuutor ghana started making films way back 1940 madam you a disgrace to the nigerian movie industry use your brain next time ok. Am off! Reply this thread
DeeY | 6/5/2012 2:31:55 PM
Suffering from PREMATURE EJACULATION??? Then you have got to visit..... WWW . STOPEJA . WAPKA . MOBI Reply this thread
boo | 6/6/2012 2:14:11 AM
ghanaians are richer than s**tgerians.,your gdp divided by yr population is equal to per capital income....whiles ghana per capital income is $3000 dollars our neibouring s**tgerians are struggling with $2500....u see..oh u can google the economy of both countries if u want....u people are trupping into ghana like refugesss..yr time go come s**tgerians ..boko haramist Reply this thread
movies | 6/8/2012 12:04:14 PM
lol pssssffftt about nigerians taught ghanaians how to make movies? woman what drugs are u on?? nollywood movies make me sickk. w/ all ur witchcraft n horrible forced accents and women with big bellies and bleached skin, plssss give credit to Ghana or Kenya. i watched ''the perfect picture'' a ghanaian movie and i seriously couldnt find any nigerian movie that reaches up to its standard. maybe y'all could change my opinion but for now Nigerian movies or nollywood, aint no where near Ghanaian movies!!!!! Reply this thread
dj | 6/12/2012 4:00:48 AM
ghanna movies sucks, seems like childsplay Reply this thread
ghana what? | 6/13/2012 10:39:48 PM
i dont av time 2 talk about ghana p**n. It z only a big f**l dat would talk abt majid and dumelo when we are talking abt rmd and ramsey, or talk abt nelson and appiah, when we are talking about genevieve and omotola.....arrant nonsense. There is even no basis for comparism. The only thing ghollywood does better is softp**n! C'est finis! Reply this thread
Feral | 6/19/2012 12:52:05 AM
Personally i dnt lik ghana movies cuz d way they do dia luv stuffs iz vry bad n more of a p**ne movie Reply this thread
Deni | 8/20/2012 3:25:15 PM
Great Initiative good luck to all of them I think Nadia Buari needs a makeover her tesrorus is too tight I wonder if thid pretty girl can ever get it right, if it not her pounded palm nut extract(Mefi) looking looking hair then it is always something elsewould love to see Nadia in something classyalso as for Yvonne nelson and her ridiculous lace front hair what exactly does she know walking around like some essex CHAV with clashing monogram LV bags like some Harlem Getto divaLooking forward to it still Reply this thread
ME | 8/30/2012 4:36:04 AM
@PPG ,yes i agree with you,Nigerians are not as black as Ghananians because Ghanaians dont BLEACH Reply this thread
young buck | 1/19/2013 6:20:24 PM
i find ghanians living in a bubble. Even Ghanian presidents call nigeria Ghana's big brother. Even though u got indepence b4 nigeria. Finally, its no surprise that all ur big stars and celebs sleep around with upcoming Nigerian celebs. The truth hurts but get over it. Simply put in this comparison : mexico is not USA......bulgaria is not the U.K Reply this thread