Even at 40, I wasn’t under pressure to get married –Bimbo Manuel

by Anike Jacobs

Veteran actor and broadcaster Bimbo Manuel is one who has continued to remain relevant in the Nigerian entertainment industry.
In an interview with the Punch, the former Tinsel star  opened up on why he had to leave Tinsel, why he got married at age 40  and more.
See excerpts below:
You were popular and lived alone, how were you able to cope with the ladies that flocked around you?
I have never been a ladies’ man even with stardom. I have always been a quiet person and a loner. I am not someone who goes to night clubs and places like that. I had my share of fun but I never really socialised. Coping with ladies was not a major challenge for me. During our time, we did not have the kind of fan reaction that exists now. People were more respectful of your privacy. They acknowledged you but it would be with respect but it is not as overt as it is now.
How were you able to raise a family with a career as demanding as yours?
I did not meet my wife until I was close to 40 years old. I cannot quantify what she brought into my life. She helped to give purpose to my life. Before she came into my life, I was going around without any sense of purpose. I just wanted to be able to live comfortably and afford anything I wanted but there was a purpose to life as she came on board. Then we began to have kids and it has been wonderful ever since we met. They helped to stabilise the kind of jobs I did. Their arrival helped to strengthen my convictions and the principles that I always act on professionally and it remains that I do not have to take every job that comes.
Is it because you are a loner that you did not get married until 40?
I don’t think it was because of that; I think it is because it was not very high on my priority list. If I wanted to get married before then, I could have but it just was not very high on my to-do list. I think I was also fortunate that I did not get pressure from my family to get married.
How did you meet your wife?
We met while I was working. She worked for a company that I was doing my project with. We met and began talking. Nobody believed we were going to get married; even I did not give it much thought. One thing led to another, we got very involved and the rest is history today.
It was rumoured that you left Tinsel because you had issues with the management. How true is that?
I did not have issues with Tinsel or the producers. I never did. There are different ways that situations and actions present themselves to different people for perceptions. I felt that I had been on Tinsel for about six and a half years and it was time for me to move on. You could easily get comfortable and complacent with just reporting for work every morning and doing the same thing over and over again. It was not the reason I decided to be an actor; I decided to choose this career because of the challenges it offers. I saw that Tinsel was beginning to take all of that from me, so I decided to leave.
What are you currently working on?
I have a lot of things I am working on. I am on the set of a series called Newman’s Street. It is based on an assessment of impact of politics and governance on different areas of the lives of people. I also just finished shooting After Dark, which is a detective series.
Why do you feature more in series than movies?
I do a lot of feature movies. I am not a ‘series man.’ I cannot be limited to a genre of movie production. I do everything. I choose carefully. If I am not in a lot of featured movies, it is not because I do not get them; it is because I choose carefully. I cannot be a part of a poor movie production; I doubt I have ever done any poor job.

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