Dressed in a red body hugging gown, Ashionye Raccah stepped on the Africa Magic Viewers Choice Awards red carpet, hand-in-hand with her husband, Carl. Heavily pregnant with her second child, the singer, songwriter, actress, TV/film producer and screenwriter, opened up about the AMVCA, her new movie, marriage and sundry issues.
How do you feel being here for the AMVCA?
This is the 3rd time I’m attending the AMVCA. My film, Journey to Self was nominated twice last year and we won in one of the categories which was the best actress category. My husband was nominated in the category for best sound design but he didn’t win. As far as I’m concerned, a nomination is as good as winning. It’s always amazing being at the AMVCA because it isn’t only one of the biggest movie events in the industry, it also brings everyone together in a large room where we can network and basically have fun
What’s your expectation for the tonight?
My expectation is that it should be a great night. Amazing movies have been nominated this year. I have a lot of friends who were nominated as directors and actresses so, I’m rooting for everybody who as nominated.
What can you say about the organization of the award this year?
It’s always glamorous and everyone dresses to kill. It gets bigger and better every year and I can’t wait till next year because hopefully, my movie will be nominated.
Was your movie, Public Property, nominated?
No it wasn’t and that’s because we didn’t put it in this year but, we will surely put it in next year by God’s grace.
Because we are still in the process of editing the final stages so, we are taking our time.
What is the movie all about?
It’s a story about a lady who meets a guy online and they started dating, got married and that’s where the drama begins. You have to wait for the film to be out.
Was it your experience?
No. Basically, I watch things happening on television and reality TV and crime channels. So I got my inspiration from there. This sort of thing happens to people in the world so I decided to relate it to the Nigerian situation.
And should we expect it to be steps higher than Journey to self?
Well, we can only pray and keep our fingers crossed. The audience will determine that.
Is it a drama?
It’s a ‘dramedy’, that is, a comedy-drama.
You were known as a musician and now, a movie producer, what’s the transition like?
Well, my foray into movie started in 2005 with Doctor’s Quarters, a series where I played a spontaneous French girl. A friend of mine just told me to give it a try since the character was more like me so, that was how I got into it and that was it. Even as a kid, my siblings and I would always put up little shows for our parents, so I guess the art has always been in me but, I haven’t left music. What I did was take a break from music. I’m in love with movies at the moment, script-writing, producing and acing. I’m not into directing yet but I directed my husband’s children’s programme called Kids Zone. I’m just trying to explore the different angles of Ashionye.
It looks like you didn’t really pay your dues as an actress before venturing into production
I’ve been into acting for 10 years now, since 2005. I think I have paid my dues.
But you haven’t acted in many movies
At first, I would say I was being picky with scripts and then I had other jobs like presenting and then my music. So, I had to schedule my time around these other jobs. But now, I have a huge passion for movies and at the moment, I am concentrating on that. I am currently working on a new project. I am about to shoot a video for a music I did last year, produced by T.Y Mix.
What’s the title?
It is called My Love.
That means we are going to be seeing more of you on the music scene?
I never gave up on music. Music is my passion and religion after Christianity.
Do you write your movie scripts?
Did you get any training for it?
I actually did an online course which also introduced me to screen writing. I intend to go further by enrolling in a movie school to do a course in movie directing.
As a mother, wife, singer and movie person, how are you able to cope with all these responsibilities?
I schedule my time around my family. My family comes first. I also have a very understanding husband who supports me. He also helps me out at home.
So what should your fans expect from you this year?
Besides directing my husband’s kids’ programme, I also have a short film on the way. My music video is also on the way. The year is still young, so we will wait and see how everything goes.
This is your second pregnancy. How do you feel?
I feel happy. I thank God and I’m looking forward to having this baby. I’ve been there before so I know the process. I can’t wait to meet the baby
What are the three things people don’t really know about you?
I’m a home girl. I love to cook. After cooking, I love to sit in front of the TV and watch cartoon with my son
How’s married life treating you?
My marriage has been fantastic. My husband has been my friend for 15 years; from being in a relationship to marriage. I married my friend and you can’t beat that because he understands me.
How did you two meet?
We met at a friend’s office here in Lagos. We share the same passion for entertainment and that was how it all started.