HOW I MET MY WIFE – STAR ACTOR, TUNDE OWOKONIRAN

Screen-Shot-2016-05-27-at-10.47.05-AMTunde Owokonian is everywhere these days. The fast –rising Nollywood Actor is never tired of trying new things. He can be seen playing a decent lover boy or a loud, law-breaking guy from the wrong side of the tracks.

And it’s not stopping. In the last year, we have seen not only the Yoruba actor’s incredible range, but his enviable work ethic, which has allowed him to maintain his blockbuster status and his global fan base. TW Magazine recently caught up with the newly wedded couple to talk about his journey of transformation, marriage, the biggest misconception about him and more.

tundeandwifeQ: What is your earliest childhood memory?

A: My earliest childhood memory is of being in a large well-to-do family in Mushin area of Lagos. I come from a polygamous home with lots of siblings and so, growing up was a lot of fun. I had the opportunity of getting anything I wanted before my mom died. After her death, things immediately changed. We didn’t have it easy by any means. I remember walking the streets of Mushin struggling and hustling just to make ends meet. My siblings and I often had to lean on each other for support. It was a tough experience.

tunde2-768x768Q: When and how did you become an actor?

A: For me, acting was never the plan. Although, I’ve always being a funny guy and enjoyed interacting with people. I was even often called to MC at birthday parties. Then I met {actor} Odunlade Adekola. I expressed my appreciation for his talent and let him know I was one of his biggest fans. I still am, as a matter of fact. We exchanged numbers that day and kept in touch. When it was time for him to do a movie, he called me and asked if I’d be interested in a role. I accepted and the rest, as they say, is history. I do have a great relationship with him. We are close. There’s nothing I can actually do without him. I tell him everything. I have so much respect for him.

Q: What’s your selection process like when it comes to choosing movie roles?

A: I don’t really select as an upcoming actor. I just love acting. Obviously, I am more interested in movies or roles viewers can actually learn from. The ones where lives can be positively impacted. I don’t want a situation where people just sit and watch a movie and don’t take away any good message. Part of my job as an actor is to give viewers something that they can hopefully, learn from.

Screen-Shot-2016-05-27-at-10.47.20-AMQ: You recently got married in the US. Congratulations! How did you meet your wife?

A: Well, we actually met in Nigeria. In fact, at the time we first met, I was actually in a relationship. I had a girlfriend then. However, my ex and I started having issues. I am naturally an emotional guy, so things started getting to me and affecting my mood. I remember speaking to her about everything I was going through and after we had spoken, I felt better almost immediately. She is caring, soft-spoken and intelligent. I knew I had to marry her because I discovered that whenever I speak with her, I get encouraged. And she’s been there every step of the way for me. She knows how to talk to people and just….have a way of making things better. We’ve known each other for five years and officially dating for three before we eventually got married.

Q: As a married man, how do you manage your relationship with your female fans now?

A: Truthfully, I give them maximum respect. They are the ones that help move our careers forward as actors. I appreciate them. However, lines do have to be drawn. See, people need to understand that as celebrities we are humans too; we have feelings. Some people go as far as spreading false rumors, plainly stating things that aren’t right. Then we have journalists who don’t do proper investigation. Of course, these things get to me. You have to understand that I have a family. I have siblings, aunties and uncles, even younger ones who look up to me. Sometimes, I tell myself, perhaps I should just quit acting. It can be frustrating at times.

tundeQ: How do you balance your personal life and career? Do family and relationships suffer?

A: Sometimes, yes! There’s a lot of stuff that comes with the job. For example, I travel from Lagos to Oshogbo to Abuja and Abeokuta. I am constantly on the road. Clearly, some family members don’t understand entirely what my job as an actor entails. There are times I am unable to attend functions and of course, some people get angry and even go as far as not speaking with me. At that point, I turn to the elders and ask them to help me speak to those people. However, I am making a conscious effort to spend more time with my close friends and family. Last December for example, I had everyone come over to my house. We hung out and I made them stay over for a few days. It was fun. So be as it may, I try to create as much time for everyone especially when I’m not working.

Q: What’s the biggest misconception about you?

A: The fact that people say that I am gay. Although, I have absolutely nothing against gay people, it’s not who I am. I have no beef with them. And I believe people think I am gay because of the fact that I act like a lady. But I want people to understand I am not gay. In fact, I am married to a woman.

Q: What are you most proud of so far in life?

A: I am thankful to God for transforming my life. As I mentioned earlier, it has been a long, long journey to get to where I am now. God has been awesome. I never even taught I would be able to go to school. I did, eventually. I graduated in 2010 from LASU after studying Industrial Relations and Personnel Management. God truly works in mysterious ways. So, I am most proud of his handiwork in my life. Also, I like the fact that I am able to help people and I actually enjoy it.

Q: What has been the hardest part of being a celebrity?

A: It gets lonely and depressing, sometimes. If you’re not a strong person or have a partner that doesn’t understand you, then you’re in trouble. Luckily, my wife is a blessing. She perfectly understands the nature of my job and is very supportive. Being a celebrity is not easy at all. It is only God that gives favour and open doors of opportunities.

Q: What do you think about celebrities who often flaunt their wealth on Social Media?

A: Forget the fact that some celebrities are rich and some are not as rich as they would like you to believe. I feel like some people are trying to tell a story, whatever it is. And as for others, I don’t think they flaunt their wealth or show off intentionally to oppress people. In fact, you only get oppressed if you allow yourself to feel that way. Are you on Social Media to be in a competition with anyone? You and I don’t know how some of these people even got their monies. Certain celebrities use their Social Media accounts to inspire their fans or followers through their words, fashion…things like that to positively influence people. Some are actually done in good taste. Actress Mercy Aigbe Gentry is someone that I love so much and I know a lot of ladies look up to her especially when it comes to fashion. They want to know what she’s wearing or how they can sew some of her styles. So if you feel oppressed by a celebrity flaunting his or her wealth, then too bad. We are humans. You either pick the positive or negative ones. It is entirely up to you as an individual.

Souce: twmagazine

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