Nollywood Premiere With Joke Silva and Richard Mofe Damijo

Nollywood1 Nollywood Premiere With Joke Silva and Richard Mofe Damijo

Since I have become a Nollywood (Nigerian film industry for those that don’t know) Fanatic, I just had to go to this Nollwood Film Premiere that was happening right on my doorstep. Ok, not right on the doorstep, but kinda closeby. On Sunday I went to the State of the Heart Premiere at the Catford Broadway Theatre. Ruth and I were supposed to go but she stood me up, so at the last minute I had to rope someone else into coming. That someone else was Al.

We got there an hour late but it was ok since it didn’t really start at 6, like it had stated to the ticket (I guess they knew who they were dealing with and so allowed more than 2 hours extra time!) When we got there, a film was being played called, The Pastors Wife. It had already started so we didn’t bother watching it, electing to go to the bar and drink brandy and coke and eat maltesers instead.

The films started at about quarter past 8.


It was a love story. It starts with Stella Damasus Aboderin’s character planning her wedding. One day she turns up to her soon to be husband’s house to find that he no longer lives there and has moved house with his… wait for it… ***Drumroll*** wife!

Stella works as a personal trainer and is very close to her single mother. They act as rocks for each other to the point where her mother waits for her to come home before she will even eat declaring that, “food tastes better when it is shared.” As Stella descends into depression, her mother is there for her trying to pull her out of it, able to translate her emotion without a word being spoken.

In the meanwhile Richard Mofe Damijo is Mr Moneybags. I can’t remember exactly what his job is supposed to be but he is loaded and is in a loveless marriage with a woman that loves to spend his money and sleep with other men. She blames him for the fact that she cannot have a child, calling him on many occasions “less than a REAL man” because of it. He is also stressed because he has found out he has a heart condition and will need to have a serious operation if he does not lose weight, reduce stress and stop smoking.

This is where Stella and Richard meet. Richard goes to the gym where Stella works to begin his exercise regime. She is assigned as his personal trainer (I know how predictable!) It appears that the attraction on both parts is instant, but at first Stella holds back because she knows that he is married and because of her previous heartbreak.

It was predictable as many Nigerian films are, but nevertheless enjoyable and a feel good movie. There was one part in particular that I thought was a bit stupid. There is a bit where Joke Silva, who plays Stella’s mother and a supposedly sensible one at that encourages her to sleep with a married man because she can feel that he is “right for her.” I think the point the filmmakers were trying to make was that Stella’s mother is supposed to be wise beyond comprehension and has such a strong sense of intuition that she just KNOWS the situation will work out for the best in the long run. That is all well and good but I think in the real world any mother that was looking out for her daughter’s (a daughter that has just been jilted at that) best interests would discourage such a situation especially as the man still lives with his wife and is not even separated.


Before the film started there was a comedian/host that introduced the film and cracked a few jokes. He was ok… a few jokes here and there, but nothing to write home about and I personally didn’t see the point of him being there. He was described as the best in Nigeria. I would really hope that wasn’t the case or that he just wasn’t in top form that night because he just wasn’t that good. He was on stage before the film started for about 10 minutes or so. Perhaps I was put off him when he kept referring to the venue as Brixton Academy (it was Catford Broadway theatre.) Perhaps the event was meant to be run there originally. Whatever the case, he kept referring to the place as the Brixton Academy and after he said it the third time I just thought he was a damn fool!

There was also one chick singing. I forget her name. She had a beautiful voice and wore some great dresses, but the song was boring and she just didn’t have that X-Factor that holds your attention. Her dress change was more interesting. They should have just had her modelling clothes. She could have invited some of her friends and turned that segment into a fashion show.

Afterwards they (Joke and Richard) were signing autographs in the foyer and posing for pictures and being interviewed. I was disappointed that the others that were meant to be there didn’t come (Stella Damusus Aboderin, Segun Arinze, and Bimbo Akintola) but hey you work with what you’ve got and I certainly did try! At first I took pictures of them with everyone else in front of the table where they were signing autographs.

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People were then going behind the desk and posing for photos, so of course I had to get myself over there for the photo opportunity:

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After a few snaps I tried to leave but got myself stuck behind the table that they were signing autographs. Some lady was trying to sort out food in the gap that I wanted to squeeze through, so I just stood there looking gormless while Al and everyone else in the place took pictures. Who knows what shabby photos of me are floating around London?

Then I tried to get from behind the table… unsuccessfully

In the end I managed to get myself out from behind the table and had a look at the pictures. I had some ok ones with Joke Silva, but there were none with me and Richard Mofe Damijo standing together, just me looking at the camera and him talking to other people. Plus my arms looked fat in all the pictures so I hung around for another photo opportunity. Then came the interviewers, so I just stood back and filmed:

After he was interviewed his people were saying that he had to leave. I heard him say to a girl that she was having the last picture, as he had to leave. I swooped in as soon as she stepped aside and tapped his shoulder, “Can I just have one picture?” The shame of it all! He said to me, “I thought we already took some?” I took the sign that he didn’t run off that he didn’t mind so I assumed the position and nodded at Al to take the shot. I love me some Richard Mofe Damijo and he is at least touching me in this one. I think it was better than any of the others:

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