Written By: Rita Okoye
Award-winning celebrity journalist and blogger. She’s the brain behind GoldenPearlMedia (GPM)- an outfit which promotes Nigerian stars, home and abroad. She’s a lover of creative writing, which has kept her in the field of journalism for over 10 years. A social media strategist and publicist of top Nigerian and foreign celebrities.
Next time you see pretty Nollywood actress- Genevieve Nnaji, whether in person, on the television, in any of her films, on the billboard or pages of the magazine, do not just droll at her beauty, get enamoured by carriage, or bedazzled by her glam personality. Also appreciate that this is a young woman that fought through numerous bitter life battles, but soared against the odds. She went through a lot but came out strong.
Born into a middle class family in Surulere, Lagos State, Genevieve is the fifth child of eight children. Her father-an engineer is from Mbaise, Imo State and her mother is a school teacher but also does petty trading by the side. Like every little girl, Genevieve in her innocence brimmed with energy, dreams and hope. During her basic schooling, she excelled in art subjects.
Hence she aspired to study Law or English to become a lawyer, lecturer or a diplomat, never an actress. Even at eight years old, when little Genevieve started starring in minor roles in soap operas like ‘Ripples’ and in some television commercials, she perceived acting only as a hobby.
Her eyes were fixed on furthering her education at the University of Lagos to study Law. However fate had other plans in store for her. “I don’t think I ever realized that, for a long time I kept thinking, OK, this is just temporary, definitely I’m going to go back to school and read Law, English or something that I wanted to do. So I never fully accepted acting as my profession. I don’t think I saw myself there but somehow…here we are, I am an actor,” she said.
Like every beautiful and talented teenage, Genevieve faced temptations and challenges. She was not infallible.
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