It’s often shocking when an actor, who has enjoyed years of stardom, comes out to say he is broke.
Some actors either fade out of the limelight because the roles were no longer coming in, walk away from Nollywood on their own terms because the pay was no longer satisfactory, or even die because they couldn’t afford their medical bills.
Femi Ogedengbe, who was once a ‘successful’ actor in the Yoruba movie industry, recently revealed that he currently makes more money as a security guard in the US than he did as an actor in Nigeria.
Stanley Aguzie, who landed a role in Vikings after he moved to Ireland, told Tribune Online that a lot of his popular friends are broke and miserable.
Saidi Balogun told Encomium Magazine that this is because Nollywood is no longer what it used to be and most actors can no longer charge professionally.
“We just settle for whatever the producers are ready to offer,” he said.
If fans were to judge some Nollywood actors by their popularity or quantity of films, they would be billionaires. But that isn’t the case.
Here are five popular actors who have come out to tell the world about their financial status:
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1. Ernest Asuzu
In 2015, Daily Independent reported that Asuzu was seen begging at Shoprite in Surulere Lagos.
The actor, who was still recovering from a stroke at the time was limping while he begged for money to eat.
In 2016, the actor was gifted with a brand new jeep and cash to start afresh by Prophet Jeremiah Omoto Fufeyin.
The prophet gave him a brand new jeep worth N3.5m, and 1.5 million naira to start up a new life.
In a 2017 interview with Linda Ikeji Blog, the actor said he was abandoned by the members of the Actors Guild of Nigeria, who were aware of his situation.
Ernest Asuzu, until his ailment, was an active actor in Nollywood. He is popular for movies such as “Accidental Discharge,” “Royal Wedding,” “Chain Reaction” and “Dirty Game.”