Funke Akindele Opens Up About Early Career Struggles and Breakthrough in Yoruba Films

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In a recent interview with Arise News, renowned actress Funke Akindele opened up about the challenges she faced early in her career. Known for her versatile roles in both English and Yoruba films, Akindele shared that her journey to stardom was far from smooth.

Akindele revealed that a pivotal moment came when she collaborated with actress Ayo Adesanya. “When I didn’t get roles in English films, I got frustrated. I was on a project with Ayo Adesanya and told her about my struggles. She promised to speak to a producer and get me roles in Yoruba movies,” Akindele recounted. True to her word, Adesanya connected Akindele with a producer, leading to her first acting opportunity in Oshogbo.

This opportunity allowed Akindele to meet influential industry figures like Fathia Balogun and Iyabo Ojo. “I met Fathia Balogun and Iyabo Ojo, and I told them I needed roles. Iyabo took me to Odun Fakoko, where I met Yinka Quadri and Taiwo Hassan. She introduced me and asked them to give me a job,” Akindele said.

Despite these connections, Akindele was not immediately given significant roles. She emphasized how her experiences in the Yoruba film industry were instrumental in teaching her the intricacies of filmmaking. “They didn’t give me big roles initially. I launched myself with my own production. I wrote and produced it. I learned a lot from the Yoruba movie genre—how to produce, manage cameras, props, and everything else. I was always asking questions and learning,” she explained.

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