African music has a long and rich history, with many of its most famous artistes having made their mark globally with their music. However, there are some African musicians who have explored their other God-given talents and made the jump to acting in movies.
In this article, we talk about 10 of the most notable African musicians who have acted in movies:
1. Angelique Kidjo:
Angelique Kidjo played the role of Dr. Amet Zimmerman in Kunle Afolayan’s 2016 movie ‘The CEO’. She portrayed the role so well, she received the award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role from the African Movie Academy Awards for her role in the Kunle Afolayan movie. Angelique’s music has been featured in a number of movies like Ace Ventura, The Lion King, and just recently, her song was featured in the movie ‘The Woman King’ in which she played the role of The Meunon.
2. Nasty C:
South African rapper Nasty C made his acting debut in 2020 with a cameo role in the six-part Netflix African original young adult series Blood & Water. He played the role of Zhero. His song ‘I Need You’ which he did in collaboration with Rowlene was featured in the series.
Nigerian musician Falz is a well-known face in Nollywood. He has appeared in films such as Merry Men, Chief Daddy, and Your Excellency. He is best known for his role as Segun in ‘Jenifa’s Diary‘, for which he received an African Magic Viewers’ Choice award.
4. Tiwa Savage:
Tiwa Savage made her acting debut as Sade on MTV Shuga Naija in 2013. The stunning singer was later cast in Funke Akindele’s popular sitcom “Jenifa’s Diary” in 2016. Her role as a club owner in Shuga required more than just a scene, showcasing her amazing acting abilities.
Simi is yet another musician who has dabbled in acting. Many praised her for her outstanding performance in Kunle Afolayan’s ‘Mokalik‘, which was released in 2019. She co-starred in the film with Nollywod veterans such as Fathia Balogun and Femi Adebayo. During the 2019 Durban International Film Festival, the film was nominated for Best Film.
6. Peter Okoye:
In the popular 2023 series ‘Shanty Town‘, Peter Okoye, also known as Mr. P, played Femi Fernandez, the naive son of Chief Fernandez. Veteran actor Richard Mofe-Damijo played the role of Chief Fernandez. Other actors in the series include Chidi Mokeme, Ini Edo, and Nancy Isime.
Nigerian rapper, Reminisce played Makanaki in Kemi Adetiba’s political thriller ‘King of Boys‘, alongside veteran actors Sola Sobowale, Jide Kosoko, and fellow rapper Illbliss. Many movie and music critics praised his amazing performance. The film received two African Movie Academy Awards.
8. Seyi Shay:
In the 2018 drama “Lara and the Beat,” talented Nigerian singer-songwriter Deborah Oluwaseyi Joshua known in the music world as Seyi Shay played the lead role of Lara Giwa. Vector, Wale Ojo, Shaffy Bello, and Uche Jombo were also cast in the film. Seyi’s performance received a lot of praise from movie critics and industry colleagues.
9. Yemi Alade:
Yemi Alade made her acting debut as Mogambe in Funke Akindele’s high-grossing film “Omo Ghetto: The Saga,” which was released in 2020. The film grossed over 189 million Naira in its first week and received two Africa Magic Viewers’ Choice Awards.
10. Banky W:
Banky W is indeed a man of many talents. He made his acting debut in Funke Akindele’s ‘The Return of Jenifa‘ in 2011. 5 years later, he appeared in Kemi Adetiba’s ‘The Wedding Party‘ and its sequel in 2017. Other films in which he has appeared include Tope Oshin’s ‘Up North‘ and ‘Sugar Rush‘.