Just for the records, he is a fine young man. Everything about his appearance is perfect- from his chiseled abs that would make Zack Effron green with envy, to his really handsome face. There is no doubt his fine features have been his selling point. For a twenty three year old gentleman trying to make it big in Nigeria’s Nollywood, he has everything it takes to do just that. Little wonder between 2012 and 2016, he went from winning the coveted Mr. Ideal Nigeria to shooting major ad campaigns for top Nigerian companies. He has also walked the runways of major fashion shows in the country as well as featured in quite a number of Nollywood productions including Jenifa’s Diary and The Yard. To discuss his success and a couple more issues that will surely interest his fans, I sat down with the fast-rising star to ask him a couple of questions. I hope you enjoy.
Emmanuel: Nice to meet you Alvin. Do tell about your foray into the entertainment business.
Abayomi Alvin: It actually started in 2011 when I did my first photo shoot then and submitted to different agencies.I later contested for Mr Ideal Osun state organised by Ville d’etinney..won,and contested for the National version,Mr Ideal Nigeria organised by House of Twitch which I also won in 2012.
Emmanuel: Before 2012, did you always set out to become a model?
Abayomi Alvin: Yes… comments were rolling in about my physique years before and I finally made a move in 2011.
Emmanuel: And you were doing so well in the industry once you came on board. That makes me wonder why you made the switch from modeling to acting; was it planned or did it just happen?
Abayomi Alvin: I didn’t switch. I just explored other fields which my talent also lie. I still shot an MTN commercial this January and did couple of commercials last year,2015 as well. So,I am still very a much a model.
Emmanuel: Has your career in Nollywood brought you fulfillment; how?
Abayomi Alvin: Fulfillment in what I do…Yes! Fulfillment in terms of where I’d like to be?No! We all want to grow beyond our present stage.
Emmanuel: Between acting and modelling which one comes easily to you?
Abayomi Alvin: Both. They are both acting anyway. Modelling is acting in Still pictures and Acting is acting in moving pictures.
Emmanuel: How would you describe your status in the Nigerian entertainment scene?
Abayomi Alvin: I will leave the description to those who are watching. But I will love to get to a stage where I don’t have to introduce myself before you know who I am.
Emmanuel: Your profile lists screenwriting as one of your skills. What has been your experience writing screenplays? Could you mention a few you’ve written?
Abayomi Alvin: Yes. I write screenplays as well. I have written a couple of Spec Scripts.Two of my short scripts have been produced (Aderopo and Till Pride Do Us Part) It will be released this month. I wrote one for Elvina Ibru as well titled “Life” to be shot soon. I am currently working on a feature length script for a producer and a 26 episode Series as well.
Emmanuel: You’ve accomplished quite a lot between 2012 when you started out and now; how easy has that been?
Abayomi Alvin: Humanly,not easy. But we thank God for the backup.
Emmanuel: So are you satisfied with your success in Nollywood or do you yearn for more?
Abayomi Alvin: I’m like Oliver Twist; I want more abeg!! (Laughs)
Emmanuel: What are some of the challenges limiting you in the industry?
Abayomi Alvin: Nothing per se. God’s time is the best.
Emmanuel: Who are some the people you look up to?
Abayomi Alvin: Ramsey Noah, Richard Mofe Damijo, Samuel L Jackson,Brad Pitt, Johnny Depp.
Emmanuel: How would you appraise Nollywood?
Abayomi Alvin: We are improving. We are getting better.
Emmanuel: What factors do you think are limiting the industry’s growth?
Abayomi Alvin: I think Piracy majorly. Even though there are other means of making income now from movies,DVD sales is still very important. Not everyone in Nigeria goes to a cinema especially with less than 30 cinemas nationwide and not everyone has a good network for streaming movies online uninterrupted.
Emmanuel: What about the industry’s strengths; any comments on that?
Abayomi Alvin: Tenacity! Nigerian filmmakers are some of the most tenacious people in the world. They churn out good films and some high budget ones even at the face of piracy, low sales, low income and unfriendly filming environment
Emmanuel: Between producers, actors, screenwriters and directors, who do you think plays the most pivotal role in the film-making process?
Abayomi Alvin: They are all very important in their own rights. But I think the one who brings everyone together on a set,is the most important- the producer
Emmanuel: Would you ever consider choosing an alternative career path?
Abayomi Alvin: I love what I do. It gives me happiness when I play a character. I haven’t found any other thing that gives me such innate joy. Maybe whenever I find something else,i may choose another path.
Emmanuel: So now I am going to ask you a very cliche question- how do you handle admirers with this hot hot body and fine features you’ve got?
Abayomi Alvin: Chief..you like to whine ‘someborry‘ o . Wey the admirers dey? (Laughs) On a serious note though, I appreciate very much those who appreciate me.
Emmanuel: Nice. Now let’s talk more about your body- how do you keep in shape like you do? Any special dietary plans and workout regiment?
Abayomi Alvin: More of protein and fruits. Less of fats. Exercise 3-4 days a week.
Emmanuel: Do you feel like your appearance is directly tied to your career? How and why?
Abayomi Alvin: I feel like our appearance is directly tied to whatever we do in live. You see a Doctor at work,you know from his/her appearance. You see a mechanic, you go know say Chairman na mechanic. Every role we get as actors has to do with physical appearance and how well we can deliver lines believably.
Emmanuel: Are you currently working on any projects? Do tell about it
Abayomi Alvin: Yes. I’m currently on the set of a series Set titled “The dawn“. I also have couple of feature films and series lined up for later this month.
Emmanuel: Where do you see yourself next year at most? #Another cliche question.
Abayomi Alvin: Hmmmm… I hope to become a better version of me.
Emmanuel: Who are some of the best people you have worked with in both the fashion and movie industries?
Abayomi Alvin: In the fashion Industry “Orange couture for Water brook Souk fashion show 2013,Tayo Gabriels for Water Brook Souk 2013,Toyin Lawani Tiannah Styling for Africa Fashion Week 2014 ,Segun Odeyemi Gorgeous outfit etc. In the movie industry – Obi Emelonye on The Calabash Banking series, Funke Akindele on Jennifer’s diary,Imoh Imuoren on Secondary,Gordon Irole and Soji Ogunnaike on The Yard. All amazing filmakers.
Emmanuel: Who is your best Nigerian designer?
Abayomi Alvin: Oh boy! I can’t even mention…they’re all killing it at the moment. No need for Italian wears or UK wears anymore. Naija ti take over.
Emmanuel: That’s so true. But then comparing the fashion industry in Nigeria and the movie industry; which one (in your perspective) thrives more, employs more people and generates more income?
Abayomi Alvin: I think the Movie industry thrives more,employs more people and generate more income.
Emmanuel: So what is your relationship with fashion?
Abayomi Alvin: We are cool like that!
Emmanuel: Any parting remarks to your fans and well wishers?
Abayomi Alvin: (Whispers) Don’t get swindled!
Emmanuel: Thank you for granting this interview, Alvin.
Abayomi Alvin: Thanks a lot to you,the interviewer, to everyone taking their time to read this and to all those supporting Nigerian Entertainment.
You can follow me on Social Media:
Facebook: Abayomi Alvin.
-Emmanuel Benson interviewed.