Some talents simply don’t fade away. We have definitely seen actors, musicians, celebrities and skilled persons in other professions around the world who seemed to wax stronger with age. This year has indeed witnessed some of the most surprising Nigerian celebrity comebacks, particularly in the movie industry. Not only have these movie veterans returned to the golden screen, they came back to thrill viewers with astonishing performances. We simply love the way they continue to show sterling performance for the upcoming acts to learn from.
Time and circumstances could have prompted them to take a back seat for some years. That is not uncommon in the entertainment industry. From the legendary RMD, to Sola Sobowale, to Chidi Mokeme – hold it right there. These are three ACE and most surprising Nigerian celebrity comebacks between 2022 and 2023!
However, get ready to be hit with other returnees in the Nigerian music scene as well.
Ace Nollywood veteran actor and politician Richard Mofe-Damijo (popularly called RMD) has practically sworn not to quit Nollywood. Impossible!! His roles in the 2023 movies ‘Fine Wine’, ‘King of Boys: The Return of the King’, ‘Shanty Town’, and ‘4:4:44’ are nothing less than awesome. RMD also featured prominently in the movies ‘Palava’ (2022) and ‘Far from Home’ (2022). RMD’s role in ‘The Black Book’ directed by Editi Effiong (set to be released on Netflix in September 2023) is eagerly anticipated by followers of his extraordinary acting skills.
We also join numerous fans to congratulate RMD, who recently joined the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (Oscars) Voting Academy this 2023.
Chidi Mokeme is perhaps the most surprising comeback in Nollywood this 2023. His exceptional performance as the character Scar in ‘Shanty Town’ (2023) reminds us of his well-characterized past roles as a villain and playboy. He is simply good at it. Mokeme is also set to feature as Gaza in Ramsey Nouah’s film ‘Tokunbo’, set to be released soon.
Mokeme had suffered a stroke-like condition called Bell’s Palsy that affected his face in 2016, prompting him to quit Nollywood. For Chidi Mokeme, ‘Shanty Town’ opened up a closed chapter of his career once more; albeit with some help from heaven.
Super-talented veteran actress Sola Sobowale is not ready to retire, and we sincerely do not want it. Following her superlative performance in the movies ‘The Wedding Party’ (2016-; Parts 1 & 2) and ‘King of Boys’ (2018), the actress made an impressive return to Nollywood. This time, it is in a series of exciting acting roles in ’King of Boys: The Return of the King’ (2021); ‘Battle on Buka Street’ (2022); ‘Anikulapo’ (2022); and ‘Shanty Town’ (2023).
Mummy Sola, keep riding on. We love you.
Popular Instagram influencer, dancer and singer, Korra Obidi announced a major comeback to Nollywood in the later part of 2022. This follows after the mother of two took a 15-year break from acting. Korra debuted in Nollywood as a child actress. But she dropped a hint that she would feature (very briefly) in the Nollywood movie ‘What If’. According to her, the movie would feature renowned Nigerian actors and actresses that took her breath away. The likes of Ninalowo Bolanle, Mercy MacJoe, Alex Ekubo, and veteran actress Patience Ozokwor are among the cast, according to the excited dancer.
We are anticipating the release of the movie (if only to sample Korra Obidi’s acting prowess). Prior to this, Korra’s messy divorce with her ex-husband, Justin Dean was all over social media in 2022. Her Nollywood casting is a much-expected good news after the storm.
Popular veteran Nigerian singer Kcee is one of those musicians who refuse to fade away into history. Yet again, Kcee is about to drop another hit comeback. This time, he is returning with the hit record ‘Ojaginger’. The music collection is a fusion of rhythms of the Igbo flute (Oja), South African long drums, and ‘Amapiano’. Amapiano is a South African popular folk dance music.
This follows closely after Kcee’s 2022 successful record titled ‘Ojapiano’ – the first Oja-Amapiano fusion that garnered massive support from listeners. Early in 2022, the singer had released the hit song ‘Cultural Praise’. Then he proceeded to record the song ‘Dum Dum’ (featuring fellow singer Skibii).
Veteran Nigerian rapper, Jesse Jagz announced sometime in early 2023 that he is set to drop a new single. However, he did not specify the release date.
Jesse Jagz partnered with famous rapper M.I Abaga in 2004, and together they set up the Inner Hub Studios. He went solo in 2006 and released his debut song ‘Africa’ which became an instant hit. The song retained the number 1 position on radio station Cool FM music chart for many months. And from 2006 to 2007, three of Jesse Jagz’s songs stood in the top ten on the music charts of Cool FM, RayPower FM, and Rhythm FM. In fact, they practically became street anthems (especially in Northern Nigeria).
Kabaka (Oriental Brothers)
77-year old veteran guitarist, composer and highlife musician, Godwin Okpara (popularly called Kabaka) announced his return to the music scene in September 2023. Kabaka was the leader of the legendary Igbo highlife band, the Oriental Brothers. The Oriental Brothers reigned in Eastern Nigeria up until 1999 when the band lost its lead vocalist, Chief Christogonus Ezewuiro Obinna (aka ‘Sir Warrior’).
Kabaka has partnered with Derda Productions to release a masterpiece album titled ‘Abialam’. The album comes 17 years after his highlife tribute titled ‘Madu bu Aja’ (translated into ‘We are sand’) to his late friend, Sir Warrior. ‘Madu bu Aja’ was released in 2000.
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