Popularly known as Omo Sexy, Omotola Jalade Ekeinde is a force to be reckoned with in the Nollywood industry. With a fan base of over a million, Omotola has been a pioneer in the Nollywood film industry, successfully becoming the most watched actress in Africa.
Career Kick Off
Born Omotola Jalade on the 7th day in February, 1978 to a family of five, Omotola’s first walk to fame began in the early 90’s with her first role in “Mortal Inheritance”.
In 1997, Omotola won “The Best Actress in an English Speaking Movie” and the “Best Actress Overall” at the THEMA (The Movie Awards) for her role in ‘Mortal Inheritance’.
By the mid 2000’s, Omotola had catapulted into A-list status alongside other prominent performers like Genevieve Nnaji, Stella Damasus, and Pete Edochie. Omotola received her first cinematic movie role in the 2010 film, Ije. The film was shot on locations in Jos, California, and Los Angeles. Ije was the Highest grossing Nollywood film at the time.
over the years, Omotola starred in major movies that include Last Flight To Abuja, Ties That Bind. In 2017, she produced and starred in the critically acclaimed movie Alter Ego.
Itching to connect with her huge fan base on a more personal level, OmoSexy, as her fans would call her, launched a long-awaited music career in 2005 with the release of her debut album, titled, GBA. The album featured the singles, “Naija Lowa” and “The Things You Do To Me.” Her sophomore album, “Me, Myself, and Eyes” brought in production from Paul Play and Del B, featuring the songs, “Feel Alright” ft. Harry Song and “Through the Fire” ft. Uche.
Awards, Recognition and Accomplishments
In 2005, she was awarded “Best Actress in a Supporting Role” during Africa Movie Academy Awards (AMAA). Omotola has gone on to win over 40 domestic and international awards. She is considered Africa’s biggest box office actress.
During the early 2010s, Omotola starred in several high-grossing movies, which saw record-breaking success. The first being “Ije,” (2010) becoming the highest grossing film ever in the African cinemas. This was closely followed by “Last Flight To Abuja,” earning Omotola another box office record for becoming the highest grossing film in opening week. These accomplishments earned Omotola a new nickname, Cinema Box Office Queen.
In 2011, she was invited to attend the Grammy Awards in Los Angeles, CA in recognition of her work with Amnesty International and her song “Barren Land,” which was featured in a public service announcement, addressing the Shell Oil spill in the Niger Delta.
2012 also marked another career high for Omotola. On October 27, she was awarded The Black Entertainment Film Fashion Television and Arts BEFFTA Icon Award, an exclusive honorary award for her outstanding contributions to the global film industry. Since late 2012, Omotola has been starring in her very own reality TV-show airing on Africa’s most popular network, Africa magic TV. The show, called “Omotola: The Real me,” has become the most viewed television series in Africa as well as making Omotola the first Nigerian to ever have a reality television show.
And since then, Omotola has appeared in over 300 films, selling millions of video copies nationwide.
In 2013, it was announced that she was named one of TIME Magazine’s Most Influential People In the World on the 2013 TIME 100.
CNN Travel also noted Omotola’s famous tongue (accent) on their list of the world’s 12 sexiest accents in 2012. The Nigerian accent ranked 5th on the list. She was honoured in Time Magazine’s list of the 100 most influential people in the world in 2013 alongside Michelle Obama, Beyonce and Kate Middleton.
After receiving numerous high-profile awards, launching a music career, and amassing an enviable fan base, the press has revered the Screen Nation ‘Best Actress’ as Africa’s biggest star.
In 2017, she won Best Actress in the Nollywood Travel Film Festival and Toronto International Nollywood Film Festival for the movie Alter Ego.
Omotola The Philanthropist
Asides acting, Omotola is also a very active philanthropist, with her NGO project, the Omotola Youth Empowerment Project (OYEP). The undertaking brings hundreds of youths together for the Empowerment Walk and Convention. The program received a nomination for Best Charity/Cause Related Event at the Nigerian Event Awards in 2012 and continues to operate in remembrance of Omotola’s late mother.
Her activism and philanthropy continues with Save The Children UK, Enough is Enough, One.Org and Amnesty International; working for causes like the Maternal Mortality struggle in Sierra-Leone and the Own Up, Pay Up and Clean Up campaign for Niger Delta. She’s remained a UN ambassador for the WFP (World Food Programme) since 2005.
Omotola is also an Amnesty International campaigner in 2011 and has participated in campaigns in Sierra- Leone (Maternal Mortality) and her recent campaign of The Niger Delta in Nigeria, where she shot a video asking Shell and the government to Own Up, Clean Up, Pay Up and take responsibility of the Oil spills in the Niger- Delta.
Omotola married her husband, Pilot Captain Matthew Ekeinde in 1996. The couple later held a white ceremony on board a Dash 7 aircraft while flying from Lagos to Benin in 2001, with close family and friends present. She gave birth to their first daughter, Princess Ekeinde in 1997, their first son, M.J followed in 1998. Her third child, Maraiah was born in 2000 and last born, Michael was born in 2002.
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