AMAA 2017: Spotlight on best supporting actor from Nollywood


One of the most coveted awards of the Africa Movie Academy Awards (AMAA) is Best Actor in a Supporting Role, which is given to an actor in a movie whose performance in a sub-lead role helps to advance the story.

By this time next week, precisely at 7pm on July 15 at the Eko Hotels and Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos, two Nigerian actors- Adonijah Owiriwa, for the movie, ’76, and veteran actor, Oludotun Jacobs, for the movie, Oloibiri- would be battling for honours amongst four other actors from different parts of the continent- Warren Matsimola (Vaya), Papi Mpaka (Félicité), Richard Seruwazi (While We Live) and Ghanaian actor, Majid Michel (Slow Country)- in the best supporting actor category of this year’s AMAA.

It is the first time Owiriwa would make the African Academy Movie Award (AMAA) nomination grid, but Jacob is a regular and had even won the best acting crest. But this is AMAA 2017 and both actors would slug it out with the others.

Although a category with a tough line up, industry analysts predict that any of these actors from Nigeria look good to clinch the best supporting actor diadem that would undoubtedly mark a career peak or highlight for the winner.

So, who among these actors would do Nollywood proud at the AMAA’s next Saturday?

Oludotun Jacobs
Oludotun Jacobs is not new to awards; he has won several in his over five decades of professional practice as an actor.

Jacobs, husband to the diva, Joke, received the Africa’s Best Actor in a leading role at the 2007 edition of the AMAA.

He has been honoured by the Nigerian government with the national award of Member of the Federal Republic (MFR) for his many accomplishments and meritorious service to fatherland.

Uncle Olu, as he is simply called by younger colleagues, has also received numerous special recognition awards, including two lifetime achievement awards from the organisers of the African Magic Viewers Choice Awards (AMVCA) and AMAA.

His nomination for the supporting actor category of the AMAA didn’t come as a surprise to many, both at home and abroad, particularly those who have seen his inimitable run in the epic movie, Oloibiri.

No doubt, he has had more than a robust, impressive and outstanding career as an actor and show biz personality.

An actor of innumerable credit, whose skills and stagecraft have lifted him to the enviable status of a world-class actor, Jacobs hails from Abeokuta in Ogun State.

The fifth child in a family of eight and star of the epic encounter, Ashanti, starring William Holden, Omar Sheriff and Michael Kane, he trained at the prestigious Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts in London and returned to Nigeria in the 80’s after a successful acting career in England, where he starred in several British television series, stage plays and international films.

His major take on the soil of fatherland was as a lead actor in the long rested Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) detective series, Third Eye.

The Igwe of Nollywood, an alias he earned for being most of the producers first choice for a king in most of their epic movie productions, was to later be part of a number of stage, movie and television productions, including the award-winning feature film, Vigilante, produced by AA Productions.

After that appearance, Uncle Olu, who recently bagged the highest acting award in Cameroun, followed it up with appearances in a number of other movie productions, at a time, literarily forcing scriptwriters to pen stories around him.

Today, he holds the reputation of featuring in over 200 home video productions, about 100 stage production and 30 television programmes in Nigeria alone.

Widely referred to as the bridge between the old and the new generation of actors, he needs this win to maintain his consistent lead on the continents top acting chart.

Adonijah Owiriwa
Chief Executive Officer of Adonis Production, the outfit that signed the big budget movie, ’76, as producer, Adonijah Owiriwa is a mechanical engineer who has shown enormous passion for the arts and has over the years been involved in various productions.

From a mere interest in founding an entertainment outfit that comprised a band, hired musical equipment and promote in-house artistes, Owiriwa has launched fully into movie production with the groundbreaking film.

He had earlier signed movies, such as Nnenda and the science fiction, Kajola, as producer. Owiriwa did not only sign ‘76 as one of the executive producers, but he featured as a supporting actor; hence his nomination in this year’s AMAA.

He played Captain Ajayi, the officer who investigated the coup and indicted the people involved, putting up a high-wire act that earned him the deserved nomination.

If he wins the crest next week, he would be admitted into the unofficial club of the continents best supporting actors.

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