Interviews

I can’t quit acting, Iya Rainbow declares

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Veteran actress cum filmmaker, Idowu Phillips, popularly known as Iya Rainbow, has denied any plan to quit acting, adding nothing can stop her from being an entertainer till death beckons. She told ENCOMIUM Weekly this and much more when we visited her Ojodu, Lagos residence on Friday, February 27, 2015.

What’s new about your career right now?

iya-rainbowThere is nothing new really. The only thing I can say is new about my career is that I have veered into music. I have just completed an album in collaboration with popular fuji act, Alhaji Wasiu Alabi (Pasuma), where I explained how God is a politician. It will soon be released.

The major problem of the industry generally is piracy. That’s why everybody is being careful of releasing a movie or an album. When people like us started out, things were not like this. We were always eager to go to locations for movie shoot because we’re sure of the producers being there for us. Unlike what happens nowadays when you will be on location and the person you’re working for as a producer will just abandon you and go somewhere else. It’s not always their fault.

At times, marketers too don’t help matters. Some of them will sell out the movies that are supposed to be released on Monday to pirates on Friday, about three days to the official release date. So, things have really changed.

What are you working on, movie wise?

I am not working on any movie at the moment. I want to use this time to feed the people with the Word of God so that they can repent.

A lot of theatre legends have died, they need to be remembered and celebrated. I am therefore using this medium to call upon the government at various levels, corporate organizations, eminent people in the society to come forward and assist us financially.

We should set aside a day for them, exhibit their movies and treat them as if they are still alive.

Apart from acting, what else do you do that fetches you money?

I am not only an actress, I am also a marriage engager and master of ceremonies. Any time you need me, let me know, I am available.

Some people said you will soon retire from acting, how true is it?

It’s only death that can stop me from acting and singing. I am an entertainer for life. Any level they take theatre practice to, I am always ready. I have not retired and I don’t have any plan to quit. The only thing is that the kind of movies they produce these days do not conform with people of my age. Is it someone like me that will be crying in a movie, act like a cultist, God forbid!

That’s why you don’t see me in some of the movies again. But if I have any good script and I am satisfied with the storyline, I am always ready to accept such.

What informed your programme, Alaga on DSTV?

When you take a look at the situation of things nowadays, you will find out that some marriages last much longer.

So, that’s why I set up the programme to enable me teach couples more how to keep their homes. I believe it’s good. They live long and spend good time together, even at old age.

What’s your view about the situation in the industry right now?

The industry is not what it used to be. We’re only appealing to God to help rebuild it. Most of the mistakes are even from all of us who are stakeholders, including marketers, actors, producers and all that. Even the public, I mean, those buying our movies are not helping matters.

We have warned them against buying pirated movies but they refused to listen. The industry is in disarray. It’s only God that can fix it for us.

iya_rainbow-001How do you juggle acting, evangelism and TV programme?

When I know that we have a church programme by 6pm, anywhere I am, I will come home to worship. So, acting doesn’t affect my service to God, so also other things I do.

All you need is to do the right thing at the right time. But in all, I always put God first in everything I do.

How about your church in London?

We have someone there taking care of the church, but I will be visiting soon. However, I must make sure the one in Nigeria remains intact. So, I have to balance everything. I am about clocking 73, what else do I want God to do for me? I have been blessed by God beyond imagination, what’s left for me is the Kingdom of God. Some people don’t invite me for their movies again, they say I don’t have time because I am running a church. “She doesn’t stay in one place, don’t call her for any job.”

Not knowing I am always ready to work with anybody so far the script is interesting. If I am invited to minister in a church, I honour it.

-TEMITOPE OYEDELE

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