Veteran actor, Kanayo O Kanayo, was the cynosure of all eyes when he was called to the Nigerian Bar on Tuesday, September 15, 2020. He had studied Law at the University of Abuja before proceeding to the Nigerian Law School.
In an interview with Saturday Beats, Kanayo O Kanayo disclosed that becoming a lawyer had been his lifelong dream. He said, “It is a moment of joy for me. I give glory to God that I embarked on my lifelong dream some years ago and I have been able to fulfill it. I consider it a great achievement. Many people were surprised that with my age and popularity, I was able to sit down in the classroom and was among those who were successful. I am overwhelmed with the joy of being called to be a servant in the temple of justice.
“I have always wanted to be a lawyer. When in 1994, the University of Lagos offered me admission to study Philosophy, I wasn’t happy because it was Law I wanted. However, what I have been doing on TV over the years is what a lawyer does in court. To be a voice for the voiceless and speak for those who cannot speak for themselves. In the world of make-believe, we dramatise injustice and show to people those who perpetrate injustice. And in the course of doing that, people learn. However, now I have another platform to fight for the truth, equity and fairness.”
The ‘Living in Bondage actor’ also maintained that he would actively practise the noble profession. He added, “I intend to practise law though I cannot divulge which area of practice I would go into. I didn’t study Law to stay at home. I did it to serve humanity and I can do that in several areas. But, some people (erroneously) think that when one reads Law, one must appear in court every day.”
Reacting to insinuations that Nigerian movies portray the country in a bad light in terms of occult activities and ‘blood money’, the veteran actor said, “Everyone is entitled to their opinions. Nollywood has done more for this country than 90 per cent of the other industries. People can say whatever they want but the fact remains that we have ‘danced in the marketplace’ and received accolades. If anybody says Nollywood has de-marketed Nigeria, we should ask them, ‘To what extent’? Nollywood is about social reality― we only portray what happens in society. I believe in protecting the image of the country because it is part of national security but the way out is for people to do more good than evil. People should leave Nollywood alone and do the right things.”
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Kanayo also stated that he wasn’t rattled by the fact that some people associate him with the tag of an occultist which he plays in movies. He said, “It means I play the roles well. I don’t cast myself in those roles and if anybody thinks it’s a stereotype, that’s up to the person. However, I always cite the examples of actors such as Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sylvester Stallone, who often play the role of ‘hard guys’ in movies. That is also similar to what I do here. Besides, I also play other roles. No two stories are the same. For example, the character I played in the TV series, ‘Professor Johnbull’ is different from what I have done in home videos. However, I always say that we need better stories.”