A leading Nollywood actress, Ufuoma McDermott, has said featuring in the movie: ‘Merry Men 2’ has set her acting career on a new milestone in the Nigerian entertainment industry.
She disclosed this in Lagos when she sponsored 100 Nigerians to see the movie: ‘Merry Men 2’ at the IMAX Cinema in Lekki.
Speaking at a ‘Meet and Greet’ session with fans and journalists after the movie viewing, McDermott said that given the evolving age of Information and Communications Technology (ICT), the special viewing of the movie stood to endear more young Nigerians into embracing ICT, especially in curbing crime and other vices.
McDermott, who played a mother’s role in Merry Men 2, featured as Zara Aminu in the movie.
“The movie and what we have done here today will further enable young people, and the Nigerian society as a whole, to appreciate the unflinching love mothers have for children and their willingness, at any point, to break the rules in order to save and protect a child from harm.
“Just like a few Nigerian start-ups that do not give up, despite daunting challenges in the business environment, Zara Aminu never gave up on her beliefs and ideals.”
She added, “With this project, young Nigerians will learn and realise the importance of not giving up on a struggle – health challenges, quest for freedom, acquisition of knowledge, passion, business, etc.”
Also speaking, one of McDermott’s fans, Chris Chukwujekwe, described the movie as a classic, saying, “Zara made all the difference in the movie.”
“Zara is smart, a master-mind and a fixer who is very skilled in handling arms. She is notorious, but a very skilled criminal,” he added.
According to him, Zara’s intelligence surpassed the role played by Ramsey Noah. “Ramsey Noah was very witty, but Zara often predicted all his strategies correctly,” Chukwujekwe said.
Commenting on her experience featuring in the movie, McDermott said the project took her to a new milestone in her acting career.
“It’s the most challenging in my career because I had to be physical and be as fit as I can. Merry Men 2 took me to a place that no other film has taken me to and I am grateful for that.
“The movie took me out of my usual happy, laughing character to a bit more serious one where I had to frown my face all the time. At the premier of Merry Men 2, I already had two offers on action films,” McDermott said.
She added: “I think working on this project made me understand the importance of having the right crew members, so we had our martial artist on set. Believe it or not, that is one of the hardest things I had to do in my life.
“I am such a drama actor that act pretty well displaying emotions on the face and all of that, but when it has to involve getting physical, I was so scared. At a time, they were like ‘hit this guy’, and I said I don’t want to hit him.”
According to her, the most beautiful thing is understanding what martial arts should be and mixing it with filmmaking.
“It was an amazing combination. It slows down production a little bit, in all honesty. You know we could have got through those scenes faster, but it involved a lot more because martial art is involved.
“I give Ayo Makun, the producer, the credit on this one because that was a lot of money many people won’t have spent,” she noted.
Also speaking at the event, Ayo Makun, popularly called AY, said, “If you do a wishy-washy kind of production, it won’t take you anywhere and people won’t watch it.
“If you even use politics to push it out there, it still won’t make you money; it will only embarrass you.
“What that knowledge did is to make us buckle up and know that these people who come out to see films are wiser than what producers used to think. They know what they want, and they know shots, angles; they understand cinematography.”
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