EXCLUSIVE: Nigerian Government should use repentant criminals to fight crime – Nollywood Actor

Ifedolapo Falana is a fast-rising Yoruba Actor and Movie Producer.

In an interview monitored by VOICE AIR MEDIA on ConcordNG, he shares his vision, motivation and ambition in Nollywood.

Can we meet you?

I am Ifedolapo Falana, a Business Owner, An Actor, an advocate for true love and bonafide son of Ido Ekiti, Ekiti State Nigeria. I like to think of myself as a person who promotes critical thinking within the society, seeing as today’s world is a bit comfortable with many of its ills. I want to see a better world, so I engage in everything that brings the possibility of this to light.

A Business Owner, now an Actor. When did you start your acting career and why Acting?

Let me take it from the ‘Why’. Like I said earlier, I am a dreamer – I constantly dream of a better world, where things are done differently from what we see today. In making my dreams for a better world come true, I have got to seek a medium of expression. I have got to be speaking to my immediate world through an outlet and this was what informed my decision to join Nollywood – to drive change.

I joined Yoruba Nollywood some four years ago.

How did the industry receive you?

Let me first say a big thank you to my friend and boss, Ibrahim Yekeen (Itele) and my very good friend and all-time Coordinator, Mercy Ebosele for the warmth with which they ushered me into the industry. These two were very instrumental to my settling into Nollywood.

In fact, I must say that Mercy’s persistent encouragement, eventually made me take the plunge into the industry, two years ago. We had been friends for a while and she knew I was deeply interested in Acting. While I was dragging my foot however, she would keep pestering me to give life to my desires and come into the industry.

Thanks to these two, I was warmly received and I have not had a sad tale since then. I must be honest, sometimes I even wonder what I did right to deserve the love I have received in the industry so far.

What would you say prompted your decision to go into acting?

Like I said earlier, the desire to preach and drive change was my major motivation.

In Yoruba Nollywood, it is said that mediocrity is the order of the day. What is your experience?

I admit that today, many people have a poor opinion of Actors and Actresses, especially in Yoruba Nollywood. Majority of these opinions are concerned about quality of story, quality of production, selection of cast and so on. However, much of these opinions are premised on a poor understanding of the realities of the industry.

For example, anyone familiar with the industry will understand that the constraints that Thespians face in the course of a single movie production are so enormous, that some of us just have to stay within comfortable range. You know how it feels when you have big acting dreams, excellent story lines, but you know that you do not have access to the funding you need, you have to face several security challenges and after all of the negatives, you will still come back to struggle with piracy.

These issues make the job hard for actors and actresses, too hard. So, you want to keep the fire burning until a time when Government will create the absolute enabling environment for the industry and you therefore have to work under almost impossible conditions.

If we understand these challenges, we really should be commending thespians for damning the odds.

You have been credited with two movie productions. Tell us about them.

My first production is titled ‘Kiitan’ and it is a story about sacrificial loving.

My second production is titled ‘The State’ and this is a story of crime control, from a totally different angle from the system we have today. The story is premised on the fact that for government to completely fight crime, it must think differently and like the adage says, behave like a monkey to catch monkeys.

Your first project, ‘Kiitan’, talks about sacrificial love. What motivated the storyline?

You know, my whole life has been about Love and every opportunity I get, I preach it. My name is Ifedolapo and as one of my numerous engagements, I promote a lovers’ platform called ‘The True Lovers World’ where we advance everything related to true love. This is why my first project was centered around love, sacrificial love.

You just spoke about a new approach to fighting crime in your brief about your second project, ‘The State’. What is this new approach and what motivates this thinking?

This new approach I talked about is centered on using repentant criminals to fight crime. Like the Yoruba adage says “ole lo mo ese ole to l’ori apata”. To fight crime effectively, I reckon that government may need to recruit repentant criminals who understand the crime routes, the criminal hierarchies and other such relevant understanding to fight crime. This is like recruiting experienced monkeys to help you catch monkeys.

You know, I grew up in an area you can classify as a haven for the underworld and I came to understand through interactions, that criminals have systems, codes of behavior and so on. Those who will crack crime should first understand these systems and operate by them, to get access. Repentant criminals fit that mould quite perfectly.

When you advance innovative ideas like this, do you not think the society will not be able to connect with your opinion?

Change is a process. I am certain the society will come around with time. As we continue to advance innovative ideas, the people will eventually get accustomed and follow the trend.

Are these movie projects out and where can people watch them?

The official release dates for both projects will soon be announced and I assure you, the two projects will be so all around you that it will be really convenient to watch.

What is your ultimate goal in the movie industry?

To be a part of the generation that revolutionizes the industry.

What do we expect from you going forward?

Just one thing – a break from the regular.

How can your fans connect with you?

On Instagram and Twitter, my handle is @ifeloverboy and my YouTube Channel is Ajokeade Movies Production.

I hope to interact with my people as we grow together.

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