Before stardom with… Chris Odeh

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What prompted you to delve into film production?

I have always loved to tell stories. As a teen, I would gather my schoolmates and tell them cooked-up lies as stories and they would believe them. I studied engineering but knew there was something else I yearned for. I started a TV job with popular filmmaker, Mo Abudu and later on did some comics and other runs in Nollywood before I realised film-making was what I had a flair for and decided to stick with it. It was deliberate delving into the industry. All I wanted to do was tell stories. I started as a writer before I became a producer.

What keeps you going as a film-maker?

Money cannot buy the feeling I get when I see my movie being watched. When I see my family laughing or I go to the cinema and see people watching joyfully, it keeps me motivated. Knowing that I can sit in my corner and make people laugh and get inspired is remarkable for me. It makes me feel motivated and feel like God. It’s the best kind of life for me and it’s fulfilling. The fact that I get paid for what I love to do is amazing.

What inspires you to make movies?

My love for stories and life inspires me. I love to tell stories about life a lot and love to study people.

What are some of the popular movies you have produced?

I have produced 16 movies and did my first film in 2011. Also, I did make a movie, Oloibiri in 2014 which is still on Netflix, Heavenly Life, Crazy People, Rattlesnake-the Ahanna story, Nneka the Pretty Serpent, Aki and Pawpaw, Learning Curve, Living in Bondage-Breaking Free, and the list goes on. I have produced and co-produced many movies.

What challenges have you faced on the job?

Honestly, I don’t think there are challenges. It’s not like I have it all figured out. I believe the challenges make the whole process interesting and I see them as stepping stones. Sometimes getting the right person to interpret a particular script the way it should be might take a while, or getting funding for the story to be told but nothing out of the norm.

What else do you do apart from film-making?

Film-making is all I do. If I’m not making a film, I’m probably doing kingdom work or I’m with my family. I have three boys with my beautiful wife. I literally don’t do anything apart from film-making or script writing. Everything I do revolves around that for now.

What is your advice to young film-makers?

My first time in a city was when I graduated from the university. Whenever I introspect about where I’m coming from and how God has helped me achieve all I have today, it really inspires me. I always advise young people to start building from wherever they are. Nobody was born a professional or an expert. They worked to get better at what they do. So they should work, master their craft and get better at what they do. Whether you’re still on set trying to learn how to direct or act, or whatever it is you do, just keep it at it. It might take a long time but don’t give up because you’ll eventually succeed with consistency. You only lose when you give up.



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