Nigerian comedian and actor, Bovi Ugboma sits with the host of #WithChude for a special episode to commemorate 15 years of his career in the entertainment industry. On this episode, he discusses his career, his relationship with his parents, and the alleged visa-ban last year.
Sharing about his journey in the entertainment industry, “I always knew from a very young age what I wanted to do and whom I wanted to be. I want to be many things. When I made my first movie in 2015, I was like, ‘okay’. Also, in 2015. Oakfill cast me as a lead character. Along the line, I have gotten so many scripts for other movies, but it is what you call, ‘waka pass’. And I will be polite and say, I’m sorry, I can’t do this. Does that mean I can’t do cameo appearances, no, I just want to do what makes me happy. If my part in the film is not relevant to the story, I would rather that part go to someone who is building a career in acting. I am not oblivious to the fact that some of these guys want me in their movies to drive sales, then it becomes a case of if I must do it then you pay me like I am your lead”.
“There were times I shifted ground in my developmental years of the business. I gave concessions here and there, probably because of friendship or because of what I wanted to go and get from that person or company in the future. So, there is always room to do that. But at some point, in your life, you can tell who doesn’t have your best interest at heart,” he added.
On the allegations that he had a scuffle with a visa issuance officer, he shared, “I didn’t give the exact details of what happened but the long and short is I think the visa officer I met was very unfriendly. So, it blew out of proportion like the way everything went, it escalated in the news, they started to have different versions, ‘oh Bovi got in a scuffle with a visa issuing officer, Bovi is banned from the USA and all.’ How do you even have access to a visa-issuing officer? They’re protected by a glass wall, you know. I was really embarrassed when people started to spin the story. If I remember correctly, all I did was ask him, do you see how many visas I have gotten in the last 10 years? You know because in the last 10 years, I’ve always had 2 American visas, one for work, one for holiday, at the same time and his response was ‘there was a new sheriff in town’ and pushed my passport and my wife’s back and leaned back and picked his jug.”
Bovi also shared about his complicated relationship with his father, “I grew up in a home, but we were not pals. But overtime, I have had the ability to study and know that you can never make anybody responsible for your happiness, neither can you blame everybody for your misfortune. Everybody will answer for themselves. I have grown to point where I am like, my Oldman was doing according to what he knows, probably if he knew more, things would have been different. It’s not like we were always fighting but I don’t want to raise my kids the way I grew up under my old man, so, I am trying to be different”.
On his relationship with his mum before she passed, he shared, “I miss everything about my mum. It’s being 6 years now, but I still think about her every day. There is something that will happen in a day that I will remember, that’s how I know how much impact (she left). Everything I have become is because of her, she taught me how to read at a very young age, how to be compassionate, be very empathetic, she taught me to let go”.