I actually sat and watched all 25 previous James Bond movies (yes, counting Sean Connery’s Never Say Never Again) during the first month of “lockdown” in April of 2020. So when I give my usual “this list will not be your list” disclaimer, I should also note that this list won’t necessarily be the list I […]
BELINDA EFFAH: LOCKED IS A MAJOR STEP IN CORRECTING ALL THE MISINFORMATION ABOUT MENTAL HEALTH
What’s the biggest challenge about taking on this role?
My biggest challenge was the time frame I had to internalize and become this character. For me, it’s always about understanding the nuances of the character I am playing. I had limited time to research the character in-depth.
Without giving anything away, what’s your favorite line of dialogue?
“Why are you sweating like this, is it because you are coming to meet my parents?”
Besides yourself, which actor in this production is going to blow people away?
I think everyone was really excited by the prospects of Locked. That made it much easier for everyone to bring their best to the set every single day. I can’t wait for this movie to thrill you.
How did you become involved in this production?
I got a call from the producer and the director. They’d written with me in mind. I have to admit, I was flattered by this.
What do you think the audience will be thinking about in the car as they drive home after seeing the movie?
They will be fully entertained, informed and educated regarding issues related to mental health and how to tackle it.
How do you think this movie will change the narrative about mental health?
For the last three decades, Nollywood has participated in the vilification of people with mental illness. We have encouraged to dismiss mental illness as spiritual possession, we have normalized people abandoning their friends and family members for fear of being infected with their ‘curse’.
Locked is a major step in correcting all the misinformation and reorienting the narrative. We use the power of visual storytelling to affirm a new kind of approach to mental illness and help everyone see how they are complicit perpetuating stigma that sufferers face. We map a way things can change.
What’s going to surprise people about this movie?
The twist and turns of the movie. We made a film that abandons all the conventional thriller tropes and does something new and exciting. You will sit through the entire movie because you will not want to miss any moment of you.
Who among the actors do you think played the most challenging character?
What sort of person is going to love this move?
This movie is for everyone , even children.
How is the character you played in the movie like you? Different?
For one, she lives in the shadow of her accomplished and troubled mother, their relationship is dysfunctional in a way I have never personally experienced. It was intriguing to slip into her life and experience partially what it is like to live in awe and terror of a parent.
What do you love about your character in the movie?
I love the fact that my character is sympathetic towards her mother’s struggle with mental illness and even though her mother’s abuse is symptomatic of her disorder. She refuses to let her fiancé treat her mother as less than human because of her disorder.
What do you hate about your character in the movie?
I hated that she was an enabler, by refusing to stand up to her mother, set healthy boundaries in their relationship or remove herself from her mother’s manipulative ways. I was also disappointed she didn’t seek professional help for her mother when she realizes her mother has D.I.D.
Who’s the funniest person in the cast in real life?
Abayomi is, in and out of character. Sometimes I couldn’t help it, I broke out in laughter while we were shooting.
What’s the last thing you normally do before you step on set?
Take a deep breath and exhale.
If someone was going to make your life into a movie, who would play you?
I don’t know yet .
Besides yourself, what celebrity would you like to see tackle this character?