ACTOR INTERVIEW: Interview with Uru Eke
This week, I publish my interview with Uru Eke, who played the character ‘Ijeoma’ in the ‘Last Flight to Abuja’. She took time off a film set to answer my questions. She talked to me about her work and she shared insight, ideas on how she works.
Please give a concise autobiography of yourself?
My Name is Uru Eke, my first time on stage was with an acting group I belonged to in London called ‘Association of Multinational Performing Artists’
Explain one creative choice you took on set during the Last Flight to Abuja
I played the character of the air-hostess who had to act calm before the passengers but show fear and concern in front of the captain and his sub-ordinate. I pictured the possibility of what could happen if there was a fire on the plane but at the same time I didn’t want to alarm the passengers.
How would you describe acting? What is the most memorable screen character you have played
So far, I’ll say my most memorable character would be the role I played in the ‘Emem Isong’ film called ‘Timeless Passion’. I played an 18years old brat! It is memorable because I’m light years ahead of an18 year-old and to convince the audience I had to look for the teenager in me. I watched a few films i.e ‘Mean Girls’, and ‘Deliver us from Eva’, to align myself with the brat/bitch characteristics.
Do you get offers from other film industries like Hollywood, and Bollywood
Not yet, but soon (Laughs)
What do you think it takes to get Hollywood, Bollywood to recruit Nollywood actors
Maybe our Actors need to be more technical. To be honest I don’t really know what Hollywood/Bollywood looks out for when they recruit.
Did You ever at anytime study acting? Or How did you get into acting
I belonged to an acting group in the UK, that took me through quite a few acting workshops.
Do you still take courses in acting to increase your dexterity at your craft
I haven’t recently, but plan to do so in the near future.
What do you want from a director during a production
I want the director to push me, test my ability, and challenge me. I’d also like him/her to let me know when he/she feels I have delivered and also tell me when I have fallen short. I like feedback from my directors after a scene take or between scenes.
Do you operate on instincts or do you have a technique when you act
I study other actors. I watch a lot of films and sometimes, I operate on acting techniques.
What things/situation helps your character on a film set
The script, the lines – my dialogue, and whoever – the actor, that I’m acting the scene with
When you are offered a role, what is the next thing you do? Do you read the script many times, or once. Do you like taking direction from a director or do you rehearse several times?
Some directors like to rehearse, others do not. And when I get a script, I read it at least twice. The first time I read to understand the story world, identify the characters and the second I read to understand my character and my dialogue. I like to take direction from the director, it helps drive my character forward and deliver the vision for the film.
How do you take a character in a script to a honest, believable and breathing person
I study the script, to discover the subtext in it, to interprete the character and fully understand ‘the who’ I need to play! If I am given a ‘Character Bible’ it does help to break-down the character role into behaviours, insights and responses. Sometimes, I do chat with the director to get an insight into the role.
What acting technique do you use, if you use any
I would say Sense Memory
Uru made her acting debut in 2006 in Obi Emeonye’s ‘Ebony’ starring along side Judi Shekoni and Jim Iyke. She then stepped into Nollywood properly displaying her smart, sexy sophistication and unbridled talent on aprojects like: ‘Widows Men’, ‘Forgive me father’, ‘African Soldier’, ‘Timeless Passion’. Uru Eke can be found at www.urueke.com