Funke Akindele recounts pains, travails before stardom


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Funke Akindele, Nollywood actress and filmmaker is undoubtedly one of the most talented entertainers in this part of the world.

Unknown to many, her rise to glory and fame hasn’t been devoid of adversity and tribulations.

Akindele entered the limelight after starring in popular United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA)-sponsored sitcom I Need to Know, which ran from 1998 to 2002. She played Bisi, a curious but highly intelligent secondary school student.

Funke who just launched her YouTube channel recently recounted how she struggled to get roles in Nollywood.

“ I struggled to get up there, I got a lot of ‘nos’. I attended several auditions. If you are looking for the queen of auditions, it is me. I remember back then people will tell me during auditions ‘You are so good’, and I will think may be by the time I check the list I will get a supporting role. Lo and behold, I will see my name in the church extras list. I would cry, I wanted to give up

My mum back then encouraged me not to give up, telling me it’s a God given talent. Sometimes I would trek to some places, then take a bus. I could count how many shoes and dresses I had back then. I got a lot of ‘nos’, till I got a big break , ‘I need to know’.”

The ‘Jenifa’s Diary’ actress noted that despite playing a lead role in ‘I need to know’, she went from the top to the bottom.

“After ‘I need to know’ I was paid well, I think I worked on that project for like five or six years. After ‘I need to know’ people thought I was going to be a major star, but I stopped getting roles. I went back to attending auditions and calling people

“Your passion is your drive, from there it turns into money. If you come into this industry,you have to embrace organic growth”.



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