My father’s name has opened doors for me – Pa James’ son

Actor and screenwriter, Samuel Olasehinde, son of Pa James (Ajirebi Kayode Olasehinde), who is now in his mid-twenties, has featured in Yoruba-speaking movies over the last decade.

In a recent chat with Saturday Beats, Olasehinde noted that even though he makes people laugh naturally, he doesn’t have any intention to build his acting career around comedy.

“Nobody ever tried to box me into comedy; I don’t even have plans to start a career in that field. I am too serious for that. Interestingly, when I host events, there is always a touch of humour but I don’t want to be restricted to any specific role.  Even though I studied law at the university, I was always seen at the Department of Dramatic Arts. I studied law for the sake of knowledge and exposure.

“A lot of things have changed in the industry compared to the time when I was a child; the industry is now more competitive and economically marketable. There are more talents in the industry, there are no ‘customised’ roles for anyone, and an actor must strive to stay on top of their game. In the past, actors could afford to perform badly and still believe that producers would still call them, but things have changed. The storytelling technique has also changed; it has more influence on the society than before,” he told Saturday Beats.

Asked about his long vacation from the movie scene, he added that it was just a normal phase of life for him to pass through to the next level.

“It was a normal process of life for me; it was time to develop a particular aspect of my life. It was not easy, but knowing that it was for the greater good sustained me. Aside from the quest for versatility, the real wealth in filmmaking doesn’t have to do with talent; it has to do with intellect. I thought it was better for me to study law because I wanted to know more about protecting intellectual property, having that is an advantage for me in an industry that is gradually evolving like Nollywood.

“I started as a child actor when I was five years old, and several factors contributed to it. My father has been a part of the industry, and my eloquence as a child played a huge role in my career. As a child actor, I just felt I was having fun. Even till now; acting for me is still fun. It doesn’t occur to me that I am working. Every location to me is another opportunity to have fun. Interestingly, I am almost 26 years old and some of my fans as a child actor still recognise me when they see me; I have been blessed with loyal and appreciative fans.

“As a child, my parents helped me regulate my school activities as an actor because there were times when my activities as an actor almost affected my school work. As a child, I was really outspoken and expressive. My father’s name has opened doors for me. Even on my social media platform, his nickname is fixed to my name; it gives me a special identity. His name is one of the wonderful capitals that God has given me to start my career,” he said.

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