2023 is here, and it is very disheartening that many of the stars from Nollywood’s golden age are no longer with us. When we sit down to enjoy a classic piece of Nollywood movies on a Sunday afternoon, we tend to miss actors like Justus Esiri, Muna Obiekwe, Sam Loco Efe and others.
However, while Nollywood history is littered with tragic tales of actors who left us too soon, there’s an ever-shrinking group of veterans who are very much alive. Some of these stars are quietly enjoying their retirement after a busy life in the movie industry.
In today’s article, a news writer brings to you the oldest living actor and actress in Nollywood.
Alhaji Abdulsalam Sanyaolu popularly known as Agbako is a household name in the Yoruba movie industry. Agbako celebrated his 96th birthday on February 19, 2021, with actress Foluke Daramola.
Acting began for Agbako when he was still in school, immediately after school he got engaged in auto mechanic. Agbako acted for the first time in 1953 at a friend’s church drama, The Apostolic Church in Mushin.
His performance after the play made people thought he was the head of the drama group. After his performance many churches began inviting him to train their drama groups and that was how the journey into become a Nollywood star began.
Agbako has established a reputation as one of Nollywood’s most frightening characters, despite his tiny stature, greyish goatee, and generally harsh demeanor. Indeed, he boasts of being the Nigerian film industry’s “first evil man.”
Agbako can be a “bad man” on TV but in reality he is a humble, truthful and trust worthy man.
Another Nollywood veteran worthy of note is Grace Oyin Adejobi. Popularly known as ‘Iya Osogbo,’ Grace Oyin Adejobi is the oldest actress in Nollywood. Just like Agbako, Iya Osogbo is a household name in the Yoruba movie industry and she also started acting in 1953.
Grace Oyin Adejobi was born in August 1931 in Osogbo, Osun State. She is now 90 years old. Her husband was the late theatre guru, Oyin Adejobi. They both attended the same school and he was her senior by many years.
For many people who are familiar with Yoruba films, Iya-Osogbo is a name that comes to mind, particularly because of some amazing roles she has played.
At 90, Iya Osogbo still engage in exercise by walking round her compound. According to her, she relaxes by taking a nap or reading the Bible. Despite her age, the actress also enjoys church activities because they refresh her spiritually.
In an interview in 2016, Iya Osogbo revealed that the secret to her old age is God.
In her words, “The secret is God. He is the giver of life and peace.”
Longevity is a gift from God as it is beyond human comprehension. All we can hope for is to live as long as these legends. Even in their latter years, we wish them more joy.