Nigerian Movie Star Profile
Zack OrjiSome call you Zach Orji,
others Zack Orji. What are your real
I was born Zachee Ama Orji
in Libreville, Gabon. However, most people call me Zack.
When ever we talk
about actors it looks like they have always been actors. What
is your background before acting- education, experience
I hold a B.Sc. (Hons) Estate
Management degree from the University of Nigeria,
Nsukka. I graduated in 1984.
Apart from Gabon and my fatherland Nigeria, my formative
years; primary and secondary education were in Cameroon, Benin
and Togo where I attended both French and English
schools. This accounts for my being bilingual.
Before becoming an actor, I used to design and make aquariums
for sale and on order.
Fine Arts was where I made one of my best grades in
secondary school. The aquanum market was dull so I moved
on to shoes. Back in my secondary school my principal
used to call me an all-rounder. I was senior prefect, I
was speaker in senior debates, I was in the dramatic society,
I was school champion in shot putt and discus; state champion
in shot putt (1978) and went on to represent my state
You must be a unique Nigerian actor since you speak
French fluently. Have you thought about acting in
I would like to act in French. In August 2002, I was in
Kinshasa, Congo where alongside my Congolese colleagues; I did
a 5-minute promo in French for Vodacom to promote their short
mail service in that country.
Nigerian Movies have become de facto Africa's
popular movies. How do you see this
I see the role of Nigerian movies as
a pioneering one. Other sister African Nations will follow our
footsteps and begin to do their own homegrown movies.
There will be more collaborations than we have already done
with Ghana, South Africa, Cameroon and Sierra Leone,
transcending language barriers.
Which are your all time favorite foreign and
a. Guess who’s coming to
b. The Good The Bad and The Ugly
c. Sound of
e. The Unforgiven Sin
h. Return To Kazondia
j. All my Life
What is your take on Films made on celluloid and
Filmmakers like Sembene Ousmane or Basek
Nothing compares to the big screen. It is awesome, it
captivates and it is the ultimate created world. My
recollections of the big screen, watching movies like “The
Good, the bad and the Ugly”, in my very early teens, are still
very much vivid. Celluloid gives you the “feel” of the big
However, recent breakthroughs in digital technology have
given birth to digital video cameras with very high
definition. You can shoot your films with these high
definition cameras and watch them on wide screens, enjoying
the same picture resolutions.
George Lucas used such high def cameras and said “I will
never shoot another film on film”. Filmmakers like Sembene
Ousmane or Basek Bakobio are torchbearers who have inspired a
lot of Africans and people of black descent. They have made
indelible marks and therefore occupy a pride of place.
However, we must strive to traverse their footprints and leave
something behind, in order to build up on their
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