Vanguard (Lagos)

7 December 2012

Nigeria: Halimat Aitsegame, Winner of 2012 Next Movie Star Recounts Ordeal! - 'My Father Never Wanted Me to Become an Actress'

Photo: Vanguard
Halimat Aitsegame

Pretty and vivacious, Halimat Aitsegame has emerged winner of this year's edition of the Next Movie Star. The fair-skinned, lithe beauty trumped other contestants in the keenly contested reality television show to win for herself a brand new SUV and movie roles in her kitty.

During the tension-soaked moment when the judges, actress, Bukola Ogunnote and marketing communications expert, Yinka Opadere, called the other finalists, it was pin-drop silence in the typically boisterous House. The runners up were the first to be announced; Olajoju Muse, Babatunde Samuel and Chibufue Bridget, each of who would get different prizes.

And when Halimat's name was announced as the winner, she fell on her knees as torrent of tears cascade through her

fragile chicks. It was a moving moment for the 2010 Theatre Arts graduate of the University of Ibadan who confessed that her father never wanted her to study her course of choice, talkless of becoming an actress.

"It has been a very tough battle convincing my dad that acting is my calling. It is what I am passionate about but he wanted me to study Law, Accountancy or other perceived lucrative courses. I am happy that Next Movie Star has proved me right," she said amidst tears.

According to her, beyond the prizes that come with her victory, the ultimate victory is in the fact that her dad would now appreciate the seriousness of her chosen career.

In her verdict, Ogunnote, a renowned actress said, "From the day Halimat entered for auditions we knew she possesses the attitude and aptitude of a successful actress which we thought, she probably acquired in the course of her study. She however proved to us while in the house that she is a complete package, an embodiment of great acting skills and an on screen delight.

I am not surprised at all that she won. She deserves it. More importantly, however, all the contestants are winners in their own right because it is not easy earning a spot among the lucky that were chosen from thousands Pan-Nigeria."

The executive producer of the show, Sola Fajobi said, "I am happy that another edition of the Next Movie Star has ended on a high note. We promised from inception to give young acting talents that might never have the opportunity a platform to achieve their dreams and we have kept our words. Despite the challenges of having to organise this every other year without a sponsor, we are grateful that we are still providing that platform for many young people to attain their full potentials."

On the new winner, he said, "Hearing her story after she was declared winner brought tears to my eyes, all she has had to do to convince her father that acting is the path she chooses, this is the kind of thing that gives me fulfilment. I am sure the viewers who voted for her did not even know this story of hers, which points to the fact that she is indeed a strong potential for the global movie industry."

Aitsegame who hails from Edo State studied Theatre Arts at the University of Ibadan. She describes herself as a fun loving individual with a passion for acting, dance and singing.

The show debuted in 2004 and has over the years produced popular actors including, Tamara Eteimo, the 2011 winner, Uti Nwachukwu, Tonto Dike, Annie Macaulay, Kevin Chuwang Pam, Karen Igho among others.

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