Nollywood royalty Adesua Etomi-Wellington is featured on the latest American VOGUE for it’s April issue, celebrating 14 global talents from 14 different countries impacting the world around them with their craft.
According to Vogue:
The Nigerian actress Adesua Etomi-Wellington can’t walk down the street in Lagos without getting mobbed, and if she’s with her husband, the actor Banky Wellington, forget it—a trip to the grocery store launches a thousand selfies. But unlike some of her cohorts on the shoot, she’s more of a third-culture kid, born in Nigeria and raised mainly in England. (She speaks in two fluent accents—Lagos and the British Midlands.) She went to school in Coventry, studied drama at University of Wolverhampton, and then got a nine-to-five job with the fashion arm of a large supermarket chain. It was then that, as she puts it, “I can’t explain it—I felt I had to go back to Nigeria.”
That was toward the end of 2012, and in the past six years or so she has become one of the biggest stars in Nollywood, Nigeria’s relatively young film industry. The Wedding Party (2016), a colorful and witty romantic comedy in which she plays the lead opposite Wellington, was the highest-grossing film in the history of Nigerian cinema, until it was eclipsed by its sequel, which also starred Etomi-Wellington. In fact, she points out, of the four films that have done best for the relatively young industry, she is in three. “I love, love, love Nollywood,” Etomi-Wellington says brightly over tea and biscuits at the shoot. “I feel like she’s my baby, and it’s my responsibility, along with a lot of other performers, to grow her.”
On her initial reaction when VOGUE reached out to her, Adesua said:
I was shell shocked. I received an email out of the blue and I wasn’t sure what to make of it. I sent it to my husband and was like ‘MY ACTUAL CHESTTT’ (laughs). We responded and when I went to New York for the Annual Goalkeepers event, I was able to visit the Vogue office and I met everyone. They were all so lovely. They didn’t know much about Nollywood so I gave them a lot of information and told them about our movies on Netflix like “The Wedding Party” etc. The entertainment director at the time Jill Demling (who is now with British Vogue) watched it and loved it.
Adesua was accompanied by four other women championing their various industries. The April 2019 issue is tagged “The Global Issue” and has two covers celebrating the 14 superstars: Angelababy (@angelababyct), Doona Bae (@doonabae), #ElizabethDebicki, Adesua Etomi-Wellington (@adesuaetomi), Golshifteh Farahani (@golfarahani), #LivLisaFries, Eiza Gonzalez (@eizagonzalez), Hera Hilmar (@herahilmar), #ScarlettJohansson, Vanessa Kirby (@vanessa__kirby), Bruna Marquezine (@brunamarquezine), Deepika Padukone (@deepikapadukone), #AlbaRohrwacher and Lea Seydoux (@leaseydoux_genuine).
Vogue also hosted 9 of the stars featured in the April issue to a fun game-show themed interview where they answer questions about their specific industries, being actresses and more.
Watch Eiza Gonzalez, Léa Seydoux, Angelababy, Golshifteh Farahani, Elizabeth Debicki, Adesua Etomi, Hera Hilmar, Deepika Padukone, and Scarlett Johansson serve the best of Hollywood, Nollywood and Bollywood in six minutes.
Read the full interview here