Nollywood has numerous actors and actresses who wear different characters to entertain us in movies. The steady rise of Nollywood talents in recent years is remarkable, and this is down to the investment of platforms like Africa Magic in talent discovery and commissioning/licensing of movies and series that cast budding talents.
In celebration of Africa Magic at 20, here is a list of renowned Nollywood talents who rose to stardom on the Africa Magic platform:
Tobi Bakare: He’s no doubt one of the hottest talents around at the moment. Tobi rose to stardom on one of Africa Magic’s reality TV shows, Big Brother Nigeria. He won the AMVCA’s Best Actor in 2023 for his role in the blockbuster movie, Brotherhood. His first-ever movie role was in the Africa Magic original drama, Hustle. Tobi is also the lead character in the ongoing Africa Magic series, Slum King.
Tope Olowoniyan: She’s an actress with a fast-rising stock in the movie industry since she made her acting debut in 2015. Africa Magic audiences will remember Olowoniyan’s role in popular series such as Hush, Battleground, Tinsel, Riona, and Enakhe. These roles have earned her scripts on other projects in Nollywood. “My growth in Nollywood fundamentally was because of Africa Magic. I cannot talk about my career without mentioning Africa Magic,” she said while speaking about her acting career.
Femi Odugbemi: This popular producer is a perfect example of how Africa Magic elevated the art of indigenous storytelling in Africa. Odugbemi’s career success is hugely down to his works with Africa Magic which has seen him produce series such as Battleground and Tinsel. As a rookie producer in 2004, Odugbemi pitched his project, ‘Mama Put’ to Africa Magic, and secured $100,000 investment. That, according to him, was the turning point in his career. He then pitched Tinsel with co-producers, and the result is what we see today. Tinsel is currently the longest-running series on Africa Magic, with over 3000 episodes.
Gideon Okeke: He is one of the first beneficiaries of the Africa Magic investment in movie production and talent development. The actor got his first acting role in Tinsel, in 2007. His Tinsel performances earned him a nomination by Africa Magic for a role in the popular South Africa series, Jacob’s Cross. “Tinsel was the first film school I attended. My work on Tinsel inspired me to become the artist I am today,” Okeke said about his acting career.
Ireti Doyle: This movie star also owes her popularity to the Africa Magic platform. In a recent interview, the actress narrated how she almost didn’t go for the Tinsel audition, the show that shot her to stardom. Ireti Doyle is one of the longest-running cast members on the series with her lead role as ‘Shella’.
Nomzo Bassey: Battleground remains one of the most popular Africa Magic series of the last 20 years. One of the stars who hugged the limelight from the series is Nomzo. His role as Doctor Emeka earned him popularity. According to him, he became a popular face in markets and malls across the country. “Africa Magic made me a star,” Bassey said.
Chisom Agoawuike: This fashion model and ex-beauty queen rose to prominence for her role as ‘Halita’ in the widely followed Africa Magic series, The Rishantes. Chisom landed the role after an audition in Abuja, and the rest, as they say, is history.
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