Afolayan is a popular name that rings a bell in the Nigerian entertainment industry as well as a household name for many Nigerians.
The name has been actively involved in acting, movie production and directing as far back as 1976. Sadly, the patriarch of the Afolayan family Adeyemi Josiah Afolayan popularly known as “Ade Love” who brought the family name into limelight died 30th December 1996, 20 years ago, he was a leading figure among the pioneers of theatre in Nigeria.
His contemporaries were Duro Ladipo, Dr Ola Balogun Hubert Ogunde and Baba Sala. However, he may not be physically available anymore but his legacy, contributions and footprints continue to speak volume through his pacesetting works and the immense roles his family currently play in the Nigerian movie industry (Nollywood).
Ade love is the father of popular filmmaker and actors, Kunle Afolayan, Aremu Afolayan, Gabriel Afolayan and Moji Afolyan. He is also the brother of veteran Yoruba actress Toyin Afolayan, popularly referred to as “Lola Idije”.
In commemoration of Ade Love’s 20th year remembrance, I decided to reveal 10 things you never knew about the great thespian.
• He was a staunch polygamist, he had 10 wives and 25 children.
• He made 8 movies, popular among which were Ija Ominira, Taxi Driver, Kadara, Ija Orogun, Iya ni wura and Eyin Oku.
• He discouraged his children from acting as he believed there was no money involved and it was passion that motivated them those days. But today the reverse is the case as many of his children have etched their name in gold in the Nigerian movie industry.
• His nickname “Ade Love” came as a result of his films being love-based stories.
• He was a Christian but later in life he became a Free Thinker.
• He believed so much in Destiny.
• He was a power dresser; he was the type that when he dresses and seats, you just wanted to look at him. His presence was that magical.
• During his time, he was the most travelled Yoruba film-maker whose films represented Nigeria at major film festivals worldwide. He made the highest number of Yoruba celluloid films and he was internationally renowned for his work.
• He was addicted to Indian films, which made him do a lot of adaptations from Indian songs and stories to Yoruba. He changed some of the Indian songs into Yoruba and people actually started calling him by that name.
• He read and watched movies. He didn’t have friends but colleagues. He didn’t drink. He was not a socialite.