Where are the Nigerian child stars? by Jite Efemuaye

Where are the Nigerian child stars? by Jite Efemuaye

Without really thinking about it, I can name 5 Hollywood celebrities who I first saw on tv as kids while I was growing up, either in television series or in movies. While some of them no longer act or have moved on to other things, their performances were so powerful that those images remained with me long after.


Coming home, I find it difficult to name even one, unless the teenage cast from I Need to Know counts. So, while I have foreign actors like Drew Barrymore, Neil Patrick Harris, Jalel White (Steve Urkel), Lindsay Lohan, Macaulay Culkin that I sort of grew up with, I have to rack my brain for Nigerians. I remember there were kids in shows like Willie Willie and Pot of Life, but I cannot for the life of me remember their faces or names.

All the people I know that actively watch Nollywood complain about the poor acting of most the child actors. The general consensus is that while there are probably kids that can really act out there, most producers are more likely to use actors or relatives/friends’ children in available roles. The acting is so unrealistic one wonders if the producers/directors actually see what the viewers see when the movie comes out.

Of course there are exceptions. I saw Omoni Oboli’s sons in the film Being Mrs Elliot last year and while they didn’t blow me away, their acting was a little less stiff than everything else I have seen.

Maybe it is that my memory is just bad. So, if you were in kid in the eighties and early nineties and remember any child stars that are either still acting or have fallen off the radar, please share in the comments.

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  1. OGBU

    Comment… Our child stars are unlikely to still be stars today because they weren’t meant to be on screen in the first place. You said it rightly. Over there in Hollywood, child actors are picked from children who have shown a smack of acting talent. Here, a director/producer/actor’s son is picked, who can’t act and who will soon go with the wind. And oh, I can’t figure any still in the limelight.

  2. chika Eneanya

    Peter Bunor Jnr terrific child actor son of the late Peter Bunor. Terrific kid actor then, am sure he’s all grown up now, it’d be a pleasure if he returns to acting. That kid was such a delight! I remember another male actor in a movie with Hilda Dokubo and Keppy Ekpeyong Bassey titled without love, there was a little girl in the movie as well, can’t remember their names thought it was rumored the boy is Hilda dokubo’s son (hope i’m right, it’s been so long). Oh yeah Genevieve Nnaji on ripples and Denrele on Speak out I think though frankly I don’t remember them. Jude orhorha and John Njama from the Fuji House of Comotion segment then on Checkmate.


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