“I am this kind of person, when I put my mind into something; I go all the way. All I need is just an opportunity” – Kunle Afolayan’s statement in his first appearing scene of “The Figurine (Araromire)”
For a man who left banking job for directing films and has successfully directed highly-praised movies such as Irapada, The Figurine (Araromire), Phone Swap and others which I’m still amazed by the content imbedded as well as vast creativity and directing skills found in them; not to mention the much-talk-about “October 1” yet to be released (slated for May, 2014) which has actually won the Fiction Film Trailer Award category of the International Movie Trailers Festival Awards 2013 before its release which is enough to make Kunle Afolayan the First Character to be featured on the iPERSONALITY Column of the weekly category of idriftonlineBlog.
Born in a family of over 20 children with 10 wives of his father, the son of the late Ade ‘Love’ Afolayan; renowned film maker and director who never encouraged him to go into filming or acting as a profession but always emphasized that he should create a name for himself.
Mentored by one of Nigeria’s foremost filmmakers Tunde Kelani as he was encouraged into acting, although I was quite young watching Kunle Afolayan performed the role of “Arese Jabata” in Saworoide – movie of a political story with deep-rooted concern for corruption and its elimination as described by MovieEvolution which many would say brought Kunle into limelight.
It took me time to show interest in watching “Phone Swap” as a friend had recommended it to me and described it as “a change in Nollywood productions!” due to the fact that I have always lamented on the poor quality of Nigerian films from the story line to the pictorial quality however, watching Phone Swap changed my belief totally and created more curiosity in me for Kunle Afolayan’s productions as I moved on to watch “Araromire” whose storyline dumbfounds me till this moment although, this should be so, as he consistently take his time to produce quality movies and not ‘quantity’ which many other Nigerian producers do. Kunle Afolayan releases a movie every two years on average which shows he is never in a rush to toss out works although he doesn’t oppose the yearly release as he is quoted saying in an interview:
“If someone gets a script today and you are comfortable with it and think it can fly, I need three months for pre-production, casting, getting your location, getting the right team to work with, because there are certain people that I work with, and if they are not available I have to wait for them and all that. So that will take a while, then the shoot proper which will take nothing less than five to six weeks, then post-production will take like another two to three months. So, like I said the script is the foundation – If you have it you can determine a time frame; but if you don’t have it you can’t determine a time frame.”
He has also shown high commitment to work which I sense his high passion for producing quality films and not for money making only which had been emphasized by his father to “create a name” for himself. Below is a quote that tells more about his act of commitment:
“But for some of us who are even too busy on our paths, we can’t. In fact, these days because of the pressure of work, I’m always forgetful to the point of not being conscious of what I buy, how I look and all that. That is because I spend much of my time working in the office.”
Everybody appreciates recognition and awards for their works but Kunle Afolayan has a different insight on awards as he said in an interview:
“Well, for me, different award platforms have their parameters used in selecting; but I believe that I’m not really particular about the acceptance. It’s the people’s acceptance of my film. So at this time I’m more particular about the commercial value and with that the awards and nominations will come.”
One can’t but continue to be inquisitive towards his thoughts on love and relationship as he has proven to understand both and its component; he is happily married with 4 kids;
“My wife, her name is Tolulope Afolayan, she is from Abeokuta in Ogun State, and she is an IT consultant. And my kids, Eyiyemi, the first seven years old; Diekoloreoluwa is the guy and he is six years old; Darasimi is five years old and Oluwadari is one year. I have four kids, two boys and two girls.”
“I’m a loving man because being a loving man is different. You can appreciate and show love in different ways, but being romantic means you have to follow some standard procedures and do things that people do or that you are expected to do to show that you are romantic.”
Back to my title “who is kunle Afolayan?” actually I think we still know ‘so little’ about him as his commitment, success, uniqueness and purpose are huge enough to talk about and motivate anybody towards achieving their admire goal.
Though he’s a very tight-schedule person; we hope the left-hand director will stretch us an opportunity for interview soon, probably after the release of ‘October 1’ as I still believe there’s more to know about Kunle Afolayan that would further motivate and inspire youth toward success and implant commitment.
– Risk Taking: He left banking job for film directing which really explains the difference between “what I want to do – your desire; self-actualization and ecstasy when doing it” and “what I should do to… – what you feel you have to do and you visualise self-actualization in it either because you think “it’s what I should do to be successful” or “what others do to achieve their goal”
– Commitment: His commitment was actually because he enjoys and has passion for what he is doing which displays in the quality and class of his works.
– Time-Taking Determinations: Kunle Afolayan has proved that when you take your time patiently to do something, it comes out good as most of his films released on a two-years average has yielded good and desired results for both him and his admirers.