Beautiful screen diva, Nkechi Emmanuel, famously known as Nurse Titi, is a talented actress who is contributing immensely to the growth of the Nigerian movie industry. She believes so much in her ability, and this has given her the edge among her contemporaries.
Her mind blowing performance as Nurse Titi in the TV soap opera, Clinic Matters brought her to lime-light.
Speaking with ENCOMIUM Weekly’s Soewu Oluwafemi, the History and International Relations graduate of the prestigious Lagos State University, Ojo, Lagos, revealed what has kept her as a brand over the years, her experience in the industry as well as challenges, among other issues.
How did your journey into Nollywood start?
After my high school in 2003, I enrolled for computer training, that’s diploma in Desktop Publishing. In between that period, I was watching the TV one day when I saw an advert about modelling. I found it interesting and I told my mom about it. And the next day, I went for the auditioning with a friend.
On getting there, my friend was lucky enough to be picked and I was not because of my height. I was disappointed, heartbroken and I really felt bad. After that, I switched through other auditions until one Sunday, when my church organized a programme that was well attended by Nollywood actors.
After watching them perform, I told myself I should go into acting since modeling is not working for me. I told my parents about my plight but my dad insisted I can’t go into acting, I have to be his lawyer because he wanted me to study law. At a point, my mom gave me N6,000, I went to National Arts Theatre where I met with the Actors Guild of Nigeria (AGN) secretary then. That was how I became a bonafide member of the AGN.
I started going for movie auditioning and I got my first role in When you are mine. That was the first sub-lead I got in the Nollywood industry. I acted as a nurse. When the movie was released, it was very good. The producer of Clinic Matters saw my role in the movie and that was how he discovered my talent. He then invited me over for Clinic Matters audition.
The audition was open for females only because they wanted a role for the three nurses in the soap. On getting there, I met over 300 ladies. On the long run, I emerged part of the five last ladies standing for the role. I eventually got the role of Nurse Titi and that was how my career kicked off since 2009 till date.
It has not been easy I must say but I thank God for His grace. The challenges are much, talk about when I have to attend up to five auditions in a day at different locations and not even knowing my fate if I will be picked or not.
Some will even pick you and tell you we will get back to you. Some will even give you a role, script and after acting, I get nothing in return. I thank God, all that are stories now (laughs).
Can you tell us your contribution to the movie industry so far?
In my own little way, I have been able to help a lot of people to become a members of the AGN. I also help some by sending them audition notices through my social media platforms and in the industry as well. I was able to make good and quality movies to inspire people. I am able to stand as a voice to so many people and I really hope to do more to move the industry forward.
Aside your role in Clinic Matters, how often do you act in other movies?
I am not stereotyped to a particular movie role aside Clinic Matters. I have over 30 movies that I have featured. I also do TV soap operas and a whole lot of others.
Tell us more about the job that brought you to limelight, Clinic Matters.
Clinic Matters has really been great for me. When we started, it was fun and I never saw it difficult. On the set of Clinic Matters/, we were always laughing, playing and sometimes doing our job. So, I can tell you the experience was a good one. It’s really a plus to my life and career.
How were you able to combine your course of study, History and International Relations with movie?
I think History and International Relations and being a role interpreter are not too far apart. Histories are stories, they are things that had happened. In most cases, what I act relates to what I studied in school and this has given me an edge to interprete my character really well as an actress.
I tried to combine the two and it has really worked out. I’m presently working on a project that has to do with history. I mean, what I studied in school. But I don’t want to talk about this for now. I don’t want my idea stolen (laughs).
So, what are you working on presently?
(Laughs) You are really trying to dig out the idea but I’m not ready to tell you. The project is all about a particular history that I studied in school. I’m trying to make a movie out of it and I’m sure it will be a nice one.
Let’s talk about your love life. Is Nurse Titi married?
No. I’m not married, still single.
Tell us about your ideal man?
My ideal man must be Godfearing, rich of course, handsome, good looking, must be very educated and out spoken. When God gives me all of these in a man, I think I’m okay.
When I’m free most times, I love to sleep. My job is very demanding, time wise. So, I like to rest my brain and refresh. Aside that, I like to go out with friends or family. We go to the club or pool. It all depends on what my mood calls for.
What’s your advice for up and coming acts?
When I was coming up, I got a lot of advice from people but the one that keeps me going is the one Omotola Jalade gave me. She told me to leave acting for a while and concentrate on my studies. When you are an undergraduate, Nollywood is there to wait for you.
If you miss education, you have missed it. Just try to go to school, study and come back to Nollywood to combine your acquired knowledge and talent and believe me, you will be the best. I took to the advice and it really helped me.
So, my advice to the young ones out there is the same. Don’t rush to get to the top when you don’t have the tools to stay there. Create time for education and you will be the best, be prayerful and mingle with the right people.
What should your fans watch out for before the end of 2016?
I’m being careful right now. I have a whole lot of packages for my fans before the year runs out. I don’t want to let it out. It’s a surprise for all my fans out there. There’s something sparkling coming before the end of 2016 from Nurse Titi. Just watch out.
Who’s your role model in the industry?
In Hollywood, I will go for Angelina Jolie. She inspires me a whole lot. Here in Nollywood, I have a whole lot of them. Everyone who’s successful is my role model. But my mom is my number one role model.
Tell us about yourself.
I am Nkechi Emmanuel but I’m popularly known as Nurse Titi of Clinic Matters. Family and friends call me Iyke Sexy. I’m a graduate of Lagos State University where I studied History and International Relations. I’m a Christian, the last child in the family of six, from Anambra State.