Despite losing both parents at a very tender age, Eva George dared the odds with her ambition to become a successful actress. Her determination is gradually paying off, as she climbs her up the ladder in the world of make-believe. Now basking in the euphoria of relative fame, the talented actress, who is set for her debut movie production, confessed that her first pay packet as an actress was so paltry that she resorted to do the job for free. In this exclusive interview with AHMED BOULOR, Eva reveals some intimate stories, her relationship and career among other interesting issues.
WHAT’S your background like? I would say I hail from Lagos State, because I live with my foster parents who are the owners of Little Sai
nts Orphanage (owned by Rev. Mrs. Bamidele George and Capt. Jide George). My name is Eva George. I started living with them after I lost my parents, and I am a graduate of Sociology. I am also pursuing my dream in acting and moviemaking.
What was growing up like for you in the orphanage?
Growing up was challenging because I grew up in an orphanage and I lacked parental attention. I lost my father when I was two years old and my mum wasn’t able to take care of me while I was growing up. Instead of feeling love from my parents, I was struggling on my own to make ends meet. I was later brought to the orphanage when I was 12 years old and that was how I began to receive love and some kind of stability as a child when I was growing up.
Is your mum still alive?
Like I said earlier, I lost my dad when I was two years old, and I lost my mum when I was 12. I moved into the orphanage with my biological siblings and we were all taken care of by our foster parents.
Were you at anytime in your life disturbed that your parents were not there when you needed them the most, especially when you come across other parents who dot on their children?
I really felt bad at sometime, but I outgrew the pains when my siblings and I moved into the orphanage. When I was growing up, especially when it was Christmas and other festive periods, I felt bad that I couldn’t get new clothes like other kids did, and I felt I was living in a society that was unfair. But I have outgrown that part of my life and I am coping fine with that reality.
Was it your parent’s idea for you to go into acting?
I can’t say for sure. I hadn’t started actualising my dreams when they were around. I lived a rough life when I was younger; my only thought at the time was to get money to support my mum and my siblings. I can’t say if they would have accented my decision to become an actress.
How then did you discover you could act?
I used to save up my meager school pocket money given to me by my late mum. We used to have a theatre group for kids on my street, and we paid the sum of N20 just to be part of the group. We were thought how to act and dance, and I began to develop my acting skills from there. I have also been a great fan of Omotola Jalade-Ekeinde and Dakore Egbuson for a long time. They have both served as inspiration to my career. Dakore really inspired me to be sincere and I look up to her; she is a lady of valor who spares nothing to give her best whenever she is acting.
How many movies have you done in recent times?
I joined Nollywood in 2009, and I would have done quite enough movies, but I was admitted into a private university, which took most of my time, as I had to take a short break from acting. I have done movies like My Last Wedding, Heavy Beauty and The Search. I have also featured in a couple of soap operas by Fidelis Duker, such as Sweet Revenge, Desperado, Eldorado and Dr Sandra.
One of the major challenges of young actresses like you is the fact that you do not get enough major roles. How are you coping with that fact?
I totally agree with that fact. It is very difficult for young actresses like me to get movie roles. But what can we do, but continue to hope for the best. I don’t really know why it is like that, there have been quite a number of people that have carried me along despite the fact that getting roles have been quite cumbersome. People like Denrele have been helpful, and Denrele is a special friend. He has helped me secure some movie roles and I remain thankful to him for his efforts.
How daring can you get on set?
I can’t really say, but it depends. It depends on the role I am given; if I can act it out, I will. But I f I can’t, I won’t.
Are you into acting for the money or the fame?
Everybody wants money; it is a good enough defense. The fame can also help you, even in your personal business. I wouldn’t really say I am in it for the money or the fame, but I can say I am into acting for the passion and excitement that I derive from it. I love to express reality and that led me into acting.
What are your strengths as an actress?
I have really not thought about that before now. I can’t really say at the moment.
Can you go nude on set if the money is right?
I will never go nude on set, no matter how humongous the amount is. Though as an actress, you are required to be daring and expressive as much as possible, but I cannot and will never play a nude role. I believe females should not expose themselves just because they want to be seen as thespians.
What if the money is too tempting to refuse?
I will never do that, no matter the amount!
But refusing to go nude may cost you some juicy roles?
Yes it will, but I am not ready to do that, not for all the money in the world. As a woman, you should respect your body, no matter what profession you are into.
How much were you paid for your first movie?
(Laughs wholeheartedly) I only featured in four scenes on my debut. The movie featured Emeka Ike and Jackie Appiah, and I was supposed to be paid peanuts for the movie, but the amount was so embarrassing that I couldn’t take the money. I ended up acting in that movie for free.
What kind of movie roles are you comfortable with?
I am comfortable with playing friendly roles in movies. I am also comfortable playing the working class role, and also being a single mother. As an actress, you should be able to act any role as long as it is not compromising and offensive. I can play any kind of role, apart from roles that would make me expose myself indecently.
What was it like playing your first movie role? Were you nervous?
I was not jittery when I played my first movie role because I had honed my acting skills on stage before I moved into the movies. But there were some things that were new to me, and thanks to Emeka Ike who made the whole process exciting and rewarding. He taught me the ropes and I have carried on from there.
Is it true that you are planning to become a movie producer?
Yes that’s true! I have been planning all this while to become a movie producer. I feel that’s the next natural step that I have to take. I have registered my outfit, and it is known as the Eva World Production. I am working on a movie at the moment. The movie is all about campaigning for the liberty of the less privileged in the society. As an orphan, I am using my own life story as a example, coupled with the lifestyle of other orphans to pass on a message to society about the struggles that people like us are going through. The movie will also serve as a platform to provide hope and succor to scores of orphans in our society. After I lost my parents, a lot of people gave me the impression that I couldn’t achieve anything in life, and I want to use this movie to prove them wrong. I want to show them that I am on a path to greatness.
Can you date a movie director or producer for a movie role?
I would never do that; not at all. I would never date a movie director or producer for a role because nothing freaks me about them. Though as a lady, the feeling might come naturally, and when I feel I am cool with a certain director, I can date him, but not in exchange for a movie role.
What are your aspirations?
I see myself winning awards in the coming years because I know my potentials and I have a whole lot to exhibit. I see myself affecting humanity positively, because that is one of the attractions of being a celebrity. I also hope to work with international thespians in the near future.
What part of your body do you consider as your greatest asset?
(Laughs sheepishly) I have not thought of that for a day. But I would say all parts of my body if I have to give an answer.
Are you in a relationship?
I am in a very strong relationship with God.
That’s a supreme being. Are you in a relationship with any man?
I am in a very strong relationship with my foster parents.
Are you in love?
I am in love with my family…
Do men ask you out a lot?
Of course. You know say men like better thing; I have gotten quite a number of them chasing me about sometimes.
Have you accepted any of their advances?
Unfortunately, I am not a marriage and relationship kind of person; I am seriously into my work. I am not a relationship and marriage kind of person.
Does that mean you are not considering getting married anytime soon?
I would get married when the time comes, but money comes first. I am only a young girl, so where am I rushing to?
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