Arguably the 2 outstanding actresses of Nollywood are Omotola Jalade Ekeinde and Genevieve Nnaji.
Omotola Jalade was born on February 7, 1978, she started acting when she was 18, the star actress has appeared in over 300 movies and million copies of her films have been sold. She is married to Captain Matthew Ekeinde and the couple is blessed with 4 children.
Genevieve Nnaji was born on 3 May 1979, she started her career when she was 8. She is single and has a daughter, Chimebeuka Nnaji.
Funnily enough, the ‘rivals’ have some similarities in their career path on their journey to stardom. You may choose to see it as a silent competition. It’s fine, you are permitted to have your say.
Everything between the two has a touch of rivalry, let’s take a look at how they started to where they are today.
They both started acting at a very young age. Genevieve started at age 8 when she featured in a soap opera ‘Ripples’ while Omotola started her acting career with the movie ‘Mortal Inheritance’ in 1995.
In 2013, Omotola was honoured with a chieftaincy title from her hometown. A year after, Genevieve got the title of ‘EzeAda of Amuzu Nweafor’ in her hometown in Imo state.
Oprah Winfrey called Genevieve the ‘Juliet Robert of Africa’ in 2003, while Omotola was listed among the TIME Magazine Most Influential People in the World a decade later.
Though not expressed loudly, there is this unspoken cold war that exists between the two actors. Those who worked in the production of the award-winning movie ‘Ije’ admitted that the feud between the 2 almost spoilt the production of the movie.
Report has it that Omotola and Genevieve battled each other as neither wanted to play the second fiddle to the other.
It is a comical way of saying that the rivalry roles both take in movies has spilled to their lives outside the movie set.
Till date, neither of the actresses has admitted openly if there is any rivalry, but no thanks to the media and their fans who are always looking for a way to pitch them against each other.
Life outside the Movie Set
Looking past what the media and their fans are saying, is there a rift between Omotola and Genevive?
The duo has played co-stars in many hit movies like ‘A Sister’s love’, ‘Ije’, ‘Blood Sisters’, ‘Game women Play’, and others and they worked together perfectly.
You wouldn’t have expected anything less from them as professionals, even if they had any differences, they wouldn’t have brought it before the camera.
Beyond the camera, you would remember that in 2013, when Omotola’s husband organized a surprised get together, Genevieve was at the party and even sung her heart out at the occasion. If there are rifts between them as people paint it, would she have done that?
Competition is Normal
Every industry has competition. Each player striving to be better than the other. The competition in Nollywood is so fierce that even the stylists compete. I believe their fans must have misinterpreted Omotola’s and Genevieve’s desire to become better at their crafts as rivalry.
Each artist made Nigeria proud at home and on the global scene. Omotola was on CNN African Voices to talk about her Hollywood debut while Genevieve was interviewed on a popular talk show in Canada ‘George Stroumboulopoulos Tonight’ about her role as Mrs. Adebayo in a film adaptation of ‘Half of a Yellow Sun.’