Ray Emodi: Nollywood lover boy with big dream
By BENJAMIN NJOKU
Ray Chuks Emodi may not have appealed to anyone as an actor with dreams unlimited. But his exploits and deeds in the movie industry speaks volumes for him.
Being the son of Joy Emodi, the first woman elected to the senate from Anambra State, Ray ordinarily
would have taken after his mother in politics and perhaps, become one of the biggest players in Anambra political terrain. But he chose to be different.
And that’s he followed his passion-music and acting. Today, the bearded actor has earned himself a secured spot in the Nigerian entertainment industry.
In fact, since making his acting debut starring in the movie, “Unfinished Business”, Ray has appeared in well over 200 movies and still counting. He is known for his foreign accent and portrayal of lover boy characters in movies.
Having began his career as a singer, before delving into acting upon his return to the country after his studies in the United States, the actor has not looked back in his quest to stay on top of his game.
Sharing the story of how he began his acting and music career in a chat with our reporter, the Anambra state-born entertainer, said he realized early in life that movies and music provoke a kind of beautiful emotion within him.
According to him, “I’ve spent my entire life preparing to do what I’m doing today and what I’ll do in future.”
He continued: “I remember re-enacting scenes and embodying characters from cartoons and movies as a kid in our family home. I’d jump from couch to couch playing a lion and the next second I’m a detective investigating a missing person right before I morph into a footballer about to take a last minute penalty for Nigeria in a World Cup final.”
“I always had a very vivid imagination and this stretched into music as well. I realized very early ïn life that music provokes beautiful emotion within me and I can’t get enough. I listened and still listen to music everyday of my life.”
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“I started writing music lyrics very early in life. It all began as me writing down the lyrics of 2 Pac, Bone Thugs among others so I could rap along with them as the song plays. This graduated into me writing my own lyrics and I fell even deeper in love with the craft. I then moved to England to study Business Management and International Strategic Enterprise which is a fancy way of saying Business Management and Marketing. This prepared me for the business aspect of the entertainment industry.
“From England, I moved to Los Angeles, where I immersed myself in the behind the scenes of Hollywood. That exposure gave me the necessary tools I need to hit the global stage with my entertainment exploits,” the narrated.
Apart from his accomplishments as an actor, Ray is also a rising singer. We first heard him in 2015, when he released his debut single, “Night Time” after which he has since released more songs and he’s not resting on his oars.
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Growing up, Ray said he never had a specific profession in mind for whatever reason. “No wish of being a doctor, an engineer or a lawyer. I guess I always saw myself as a person that would end up doing something he will enjoy. Making films and music fulfil something in me that a nine to five couldn’t do,”the actor said.
Emodi described himself as being ‘eccentric’ adding that he trained himself to understand the different genres of music by listening to a variety of songs on a daily basis.
According to him, he plays hip-hop, Afrobeats, pop and rock music. Emodi, who’s not signed to any record label, said he’s planning to have a management team that will handle his promotion and other sundry matters in future.
Emodi believes in creating his own space, and living in his own world. He said while he never liked to ride on his mother’s back to fame as it’s not part of his lifestyle, the latter advised him against doing so, saying “It is not an available option.”
He described his mother as his ‘ role model’, acknowledging her motherly role in his life and also breaking into the male-dominated Nigerian political space.
On what he earned from his mother, while growing up, Emodi said he learned humility from her.
“She preached it fervently during my early years. I prefer being humble and calm. It helps make me a better human which in turn makes me a better professional,”he added.
Emodi said having done a lot as an actor, he feels the need to explore the production aspect of the film business as this would give him more control in addition to financial rewards.