Vich Vitalis, born Chekwube Vitalis Ezeiruaku is a method actor and a fan of deep music from Anambra state in Nigeria. The Certified Broadcaster is from a big family of 7, studied Mass Communication at Yabatech, before obtaining broadcasting training at FRCN, now Nigeria Broadcast Academy.
He is an ambivert, which makes him fit in perfectly wherever he is, just as he wants to. He tells TDPel Media that he is that guy who’s an open book yet no one can read through.
How was your growing up and how was your relationship with your parents
Growing up was never easy, but I could say I leant alot from it. I grew up in a large family and while other children had toys and play times, my siblings and I knew only work time, as it was mandatory to attend to the shared portion of work or errand. My parents ran a restaurant that required our attention all week, day in day out. And church was also compulsory.
I had a good relationship with my parents and still do, as the good morals they gave paved the way in the journey of my life; and I love them for giving me life.
what inspired you into the movie industry
It’s a calling. While obeying my Mum’s wish I found my Calling. Back in the days, we never missed church programs in St Matthew Catholic Church, Amukoko.
This glorious Tuesday evening, we had the weekly prayer meeting in my church and I was always there to read the Bible for Mum or write bible verses. The church drama group rehearsals also held on this same day, so I usually sneak out to watch the drama rehearsals. With time I spent less time watching the rehearsals because of prayers and Bible reading but one of the evenings, the drama team was preparing for a Deanery competition so they had an intensive rehearsal during which a cast was having trouble interpreting a particular role. I stood at the pillar there wishing I was among them, but I was just a little boy who got fascinated by what he was seeing. I remember saying “I can do it” repeatedly while trying to get the attention of the drama director.
The director then noticed me and out of fraustration, he offered me a chance to try the role and I killed it. The members were all impressed but then again I was a little boy to play the role of a young man, despite knowing how to do what I was asked to.
Now Mum must not know or hear I ditched Tuesday’s prayer meetings or Thursdays bible study, that right to decide or act was far from me then. When I was evetually caught, the drama heads had to plead with my parents to allow me come for rehearsals as deadline was close. I wasn’t approved for the contest by my parents but I broke that order, the competition day came we went and came home with the trophy and I was acknowledged by the judges as a runner up in the category of best supporting actor.
In my secondary school, Jubilee Model Grammar school, I became the director of Socials while in senior secondary 2. My parents still didn’t like my drama interests. There were times I slept outside the house or denied dinner for attending drama rehearsals. I however became very popular that other mothers in my church and community knew my name, till the news eventually reached my parents.
But it was when I invited my mum to a youth program in church and she watched me act and did 12 African dances which she loved, that she allowed me. The stage became intensively emotional as I was acting. From up the stage, I saw my mother crying because she thought it was real. Stage plays are usually engaging and real.
From then henceforth, she loved seeing me act, the encouragement kicked in, with time I got better and the journey continued.
Tell us about your success in the entertainment industry
My career as an actor recorded one of my biggest success when I landed a role as IK (the investor) in Africa’s biggest series TINSEL in 2016, my potentials were recognized and I felt pleased with the journey.
Any challenges along the way
Without challenges, life has no meaning. Yeah so there are. But they are only there to remind me that the space is not a comfort zone, we have to keep identifying solutions to each stages as they unfolds.
How many movies have you featured in till date
I haven’t featured in many, because I have been off and on in the movie industry. The following are recent projects:
Unbridled (for AMC Channels )
As directed by Paul Igwe
Best Clique (for Shilloette studio)
A film by Salau funmilayo
Stronger then Yesterday (for Africa Magic showcase)
As directed by Okey Ifeanyi
Confessional (For Africa Magic Showcase )
As directed by Amara Nnachi
Noxious Affairs (For Ibaka Tv)
As directed by Samuel Obiora Obianor
St James (Netflix and Cinemas)
As directed by Marc Adebesin
Lagos Barbers (For Internet)
As directed by director F
Stereo Heart (For ROK)
As directed by Ozioma Nwughala
The Becoming of Obim (For ROK)
As directed by Biodun Stephens
Babysitter (For ROK)
As directed by Ozioma Nwughala
For DSTV, I also featured in television series such as:
TINSEL ( 3 Seasons)
EVE (1 Season )
FORBIDDEN ( 1 Season)
Others. All aired on Africa Magic Showcase 151.
Which is your best movie
I don’t think I have any particular movie I’d call my best, because I give my best and go all out for any role given to me, so all my jobs are my best as far as I’m concerned.
Tell us how you started your journey to the top in the industry
By embracing adequate preparation and hard-work practice, being original and paying attention to every brief.
What is your most challenging experience
Believing in myself even when many told me No. We never had it all, so I had to build the world inside the dreams I had and still have in my head.
How easy is it to get to the top in the industry
Knowing your onion, mastering your craft and believing in God and understanding it’s NEVER your timing.
What would you say aspiring actors and actresses should do to get to the top
Understand what the Business is about. Be humble. Loyalty is king. It’s never all about the money, it will come as long as you are focused.
Would you say there is still sexual harassment in the industry
This sexual harassment runs in every industry: cooperate industries, banking industries, church, etc .I’m not a supporter of the act, but it is what it is.
Is the entertainment industry profitable in your opinion
It depends on what one calls profits, and your level of management and investment. If you’re a beginner you don’t expect to get all the profits but to work it out just like every other business person.
What do you have to say about celebrities calling themselves out on social media
First things first, most of us myself inclusive need to constantly remember the act of professionalism and maturity. If a colleague crosses my path in a way that triggers my lips or fingers, first question I ask myself is how did I allow it, I should have prevented it. Now that’s an act of professionalism. If by mistake I allow it slide in then I should be mature enough to control my lips or fingers. Why call you out when I can call you in and we talk it out or better still deal with it after all I allowed it. So it’s a thing of shame because people look up to you, I’m sure that’s not what they wish to show their fans aside what they do in movies etc.
Would you say there’s gender bias in the industry (amount paid to males compared to females)
A woman is usually favored around men, that’s why it feels like “gender bias” but then again a male role is for a male actor not a female, and it goes vice versa. It’s just okay that women are highly and easily appealing than men, so they get the most attention for being attractive. Now that same light reflects in their career. But we all shine at the end of the day.
Many celebrities are rich, would you say the entertainment industry is that lucrative or do they have side hustles
I can’t remember if I read this in the Bible or somewhere else but it states “A man should not depends on only one stream of income” but notwithstanding the industry too is lucrative and extremely stressful too, E just no balance shaa.
Do you run any other business
Yes I do have other source of income, content creation and cryptocurrency trading.
When can you say is the happiest day of your life
I really cannot say any day has been my happiest, because each day come with it’s own good tidings. Everyday I wake up to the morning sun is a thing to be happy about.
What is your greatest fear in life
Not being remembered when I’m gone. I want to leave a footprint on the sand of time. If at least one person knows my name and benefits from my work or teachings. I’ll die a fulfilled Man.
None. regrets and mistakes are lessons learnt. They teach me well not to feel damped again, rather making me aware of what and how to go about unseen circumstances.
What do you do when not on set.
Developing my craft, paying attention to my other businesses, resting, drinking a lot of water while minding my business, lol.
What’s your plan for the next 5 years
“If you want God to laugh, tell him all you planned out”. I had stopped planning for the future, now I pray, because only God can say where I’ll be in the next minute, let alone 5 years time. So I have no idea.
As a public figure, What is your opinion about homosexuality. Should it be legal in Nigeria
Lately, I’ve come to respect people’s opinions, choices and decisions. The good thing is, God gave us all the free will to DECIDE, so whether or not it’s legalized in Nigeria, it’s begins with you the owner of the mind. Why should the Government tell you what’s Good or Bad to you.
What advice do you have for people that look up to you as a role model
Know that life isn’t bed full of roses. Learn to believe in yourself. Love God with all your life. Be diligent with what you do. Never hurt any man intentionally. Be humble and respectful but don’t be a fool. Make reasonable friendships, otherwise mind your business. And most importantly know I’m never perfect, Vich Vitalis makes mistakes, I’m still human.
On what do you spend the most: clothes, hair, perfumes, underwear, phones or anything else
Family and Me
When do you plan to retire from Nollywood
Aha! Retire? It’s a long journey ooo, I have no idea, but I do have plans of switching to directing and producing. But not now, I still like to enjoy my galaxy as an actor for now.
Are you in any relationship right now
At the moment no, I’ve been all about work and career building, maybe I should consider one now.
How can your fans contact you(instagram, facebook, twitter)
@vichvitalis (instagram and Twitter)
Vich Vitalis Ezeiruaku (Facebook).