"I am looking for love even though i am happy with the woman currently in my life" - Actor Ozzy Agu says

The presenter turned actor has taken many roles in plays, TV series and films.

Ozzy Agu studied Business Administration at University of Mercer in Macon, Georgia, USA after which he joined the United States Peace Corps in a period during which he embarked on soul-searching where he was hit with the epiphany to join the performing arts. Through the arduous journey of becoming an actor and several turndowns at auditions, the host of ‘53 Extra’ found gold on the popular M-Net series, ‘Tinsel’ following his journey back to Nigeria.

A youth empowerment enthusiast, Agu developed an interest in youth health and education on HIV/AIDS prevention whilst in Thailand as a Peace Corp member, hence, his interest in appearing on ‘Shuga’. For the sixth season of ‘Shuga’, he joins the dynamic cast as Cyril, a middle-aged family man who mentors Laila (Jemima Osunde), guarding her through the bumpy road into adulthood and helps her curb certain youth exuberance.

Speaking with TS Weekend, Agu briefly highlights his experience on working with the team, talks on ‘Wakaa’ the Musical, spills on the reason behind his full grown beard and as well hints on his journey through finding love. Enjoy.

You are part of Shuga season 6, how does it feel to be part of such a team?

It’s actually fantastic because the storyline keeps getting better and the production keeps improving. I like the story, the message behind the entertainment about engaging with young people… Better sexual health and how to avoid risky situations: how to get out if they find themselves in such situations. It is also a great icebreaker for young people and their parents. Sometimes if you are watching with your parents, you might have a talk afterwards and then the father says, ‘come, this is what you people are doing in secondary school these days?’ And then he asks you, ‘who are your friends, are your friends doing this?’ And then it breaks the ice because sometimes, young people don’t find out about these life issues from their parents; they get it outside from friends, from the streets and it’s too much of a risk, especially if you love your child, you want to give them the best and that’s why I think I am happy to be part of it.

Did you get into MTV Shuga via auditioning or by direct slot out of the fact that you’ve been acting?

I have been acting for quite some time because it’s my passion. I always try to do something real… but this was an open call for audition, they got people from the audition process as well and I auditioned twice. It was in the final time that I got the role of Cyril. It is Cyril I am playing this season and hopefully next season.

Tell me more about your character, Cyril.

He’s the head of a household. He has a family and he’s looking after Laila (Jemima Osunde) who is one of the lead characters in the story. So, she’s coming of age and she is finding out about sex and some of her sexual urges. I (Cyril) try to do the best I can to guide her through, the best way I know how.

When did you go into acting because it wasn’t what you read in school?

I took a lot of (acting) classes and my first degree was in Business Administration, but as time goes on, you grow; you ask yourself deep questions and find out that performing was really something that made you feel alive, so I took classes. I’ve taken classes everywhere and I keep watching YouTube videos and connecting with other actors I admire and trying to learn from them as well.

You were on ‘Wakaa the Musical’. Tell us about your performance and experience on it?

I do a lot of theatre, now I’m moving on doing a lot of films and TVs, but ‘Wakaa’ was one of the best productions I’ve done in Nigeria, we toured… We played in London as well and we even came back to play in Nigeria again.

How was the reception in London?

It’s brilliant! I believe it was 2016 when Terra Kulture, the theatre house was built. We premiered the theatre with ‘Wakaa’. I love it and I love good story telling which is why… ‘Shuga’ is so important. The statistics on ‘Shuga’ are that young people are more likely to get tested because if you know your status, you can do something about it.

Why and when did you leave your beard to grow like this?

I did a character on ‘Battleground’, Michael; and I was in rehab so I let it grow, because I was a troubled guy. But now I have trimmed it a little bit, so maybe it is four months now.

Would you take it off for another role?

Yes, absolutely.

You bear no special attachment to it?

No. The art comes first.

For a fact, it gives your face a strong masculine look. The ladies must be all over you.

Well, we thank God for the ladies.

How do you handle situations like that being a tall fine man?

I think… So, when someone sees my performance somewhere, I don’t think they are coming to Ozzy Agu, they are coming to the character they have seen. Sometimes, people ask me, ‘do you have mental issues as well or are you that guy?’ I say no, no, no. I think it’s the performance that resonates more with them. I don’t know if… It doesn’t get crazy as people think. It’s the musicians that girls are going gaga for but I am still looking for love as they say.

So, basically you are single, that’s what you are saying?

Oh well. I have a very lovely lady that I am very, very… She makes me very happy.

Anybody we know?

At all. But she would soon come out and tell you herself.

Coming back to ‘Shuga’, what was your reaction working with the other actors?

They were very supportive because it’s my first time joining the family and they made me feel welcomed. Filmmaking is a very collaborative effort

Throughout the entire shoot, you didn’t have any squabble with anyone?

As the new guy you have to just say, ‘please o, I’m here. If you guys welcome me, great, if you don’t welcome me, ah, please o’. So they did welcome me and I am grateful for that.

What should we expect from Ozzy this year?

Hopefully, big things.

Big things like?

I have ‘Shuga’ of course. I have a movie coming out later in the year.

What’s the title?

It’s just a working title for now, we don’t have an official name and I am always auditioning for new things, and then ‘Battleground’ is coming back to Africa Magic. Michael is coming back. It’s going to be hot!

The Sun

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