We had a brief interview with Enyinna Nwigwe, one of Nigeria’s leading actors and star of upcoming biopic, Badamasi: Portrait of a General which narrates the life of retired army general, Ibrahim Badamasi Babaginda.
Please take us through how you prepared for a role as this; one of Nigeria’s most notable and controversial figures.
ENYINNA: I initially had hoped to get a chance to meet and speak with him, ask questions and generally understand his personality, body language in different situations and all but when that didn’t happen I had to make do with whatever materials (videos) I could lay my hands on from the internet. That guided me in developing the character.
What do you think Obi Emelonye saw in you before tapping you to come on board this movie?
ENYINNA: That really will be for director Obi Emelonye to answer. I can only say he contacted me years ago the moment the idea to make this biopic came to him and in his words “I cannot think of anyone else that can pull this off as I imagine it.” I must say that was a huge part of the confidence that helped me when the time came eventually to move it from Idea stage to filming. I like to call it GRACE.
Did you (or anyone in the production team) think or attempt to contact the actual Ibrahim Badamasi Babaginda to maybe get his blessings, information, or one or two advice?
ENYINNA: The Producer/Director Obi Emelonye I believe covered all of that prior, A story as sensitive & controversial as this definitely should’ve been cleared.
What trait from IBB will you take home after playing this role?
ENYINNA: He is a man driven by his convictions, and that is one of the most important traits of a Leader.
If you could go back in time as IBB, what’s the one thing you would change in Nigeria’s history?
ENYINNA: I probably would have handled the June 12 situation differently. But you know what they say…Always easier to judge from the sidelines.
Badamasi is scheduled for release in November 2019.