I DON’T GIVE INFERIORITY COMPLEX CHANCE IN MY LIFE-JACKNEKO
Fast rising Nollywood actor, Master of Ceremony and stand-up Comedian, Jackneko is a man with many stories. Speaking with naijawatchdog in this interview, he revealed a whole lot of things from his growing up to the point he joined Nollywood.
WHO IS JACKNEKO?
My name is Chukwuneku Damian Okweye. I am an indigene of Ogume in Ndokwa West Local Government Area Delta State. I studied Mass Communication at the Institute of Management and Technology (IMT) Enugu.
WHY THE CHOICE OF JACKNEKO AS A STAGE NAME?
I chose Jackneko because that’s what most people can easily call. The name Jackneko came as a result of accident of vocal accident. It is a mispronunciation in the short form of my name and Jack, which is the name I love to bear in secondary school by a Corp member who came to serve in my school, Community Quality School, Ogbole-ogume. The name Chukwuneku has its short form as Nekwu, so when she wants to call Jack Neku, she ends up calling Jack Neko. So, from that moment, the name became popular that I decided to use it as a stage name when I was venturing into entertainment.
WHAT WAS YOUR HIGHER INSTITUTION DAYS LIKE?
Minus any iota of self-praise singing or pomposity, I can tell you unequivocally that I was the most popular person in my school then in Enugu. The name Jackneko still rings louder bell in the entertainment city of Enugu as a result of my school days activities. During my days in school I was the minister of socials of IMT Enugu SUG (student union government)
WHEN DID YOU JOIN NOLLYWOOD?
It was in the year of our Lord 2012 that I joined Nollywood.
DO YOU SEE YOUR PRESENCE IN NOLLYWOOD AS AN ACCIDENT OR PREDETERMINED FATE?
It was never an accident. My venturing into Nollywood wasn’t by accident at all. It was predetermined. In fact, it is a dream I lived to fulfill and pray to sustain for years to come. During my primary school days I discovered my talent through the help of my school end of year drama, 1st October(Nigeria’s Independent Day) party, May 27th Children’s Day and other entertainment based events. I was always acting and I knew I will join Nollywood to showcase this talents mine to the world. The only thing in question for me then was when I will join and not if I can join. So, it was accidental at all. It was a gradual step that God directed by himself.
HOW ARE YOU FINDING THE INDUSTRY, THAT IS, YOUR CHALLENGES IN THE INDUSTRY SO FAR?
Industry is not easy, if I say it’s easy that means it’s a jole of a place. Anything that as zero challenge is not a task one should be proud of getting involved into. Listing my challenges wouldn’t take them out, but as a Christian, my Bible assures me in Job 22:29 that when there’s a casting down, there’s a lifting up for Jackneko. So, to me, all my challenges are taken care of by the grace God who made me and knows what I will be.
CAN YOU COUNT HOW MANY MOVIES YOU’VE FEATURED IN SO FAR AND DO YOU HAVE A FAVOURITE ONE SO FAR?
I cannot claim that I have done much. In fact, I haven’t done much. The movies I have featured in are still countable. As for having a favorite, I believe every actor love his or her works no matter how big or small, but if I can make choice based on acceptance out there by fans and somehow from my little view, I will say that my favourite one is “Sons of Eli”. I did it with pawpaw (Osita Iheme). It was made by Ossyking Movies, directed by Don single Ndubuisi.
DO YOU DRAW INSPIRATION FROM ANY NOTABLE NOLLYWOOD STAR?
I don’t draw inspiration from anyone. My inspiration comes from God. Once I receive script, I pray over it and I ask for God to inspire me to interpret the role very well so that when people watch it, they will know that this guy really has a divine talent. This does not mean that I do not admire or appreciate the talents of other long term actors. I do appreciate that, but I only get inspired by He who put this talent in me. I take my practice very serious. I do my rehearsal in my hotel room often and it’s already a routine I am used and works in my best interest.
DO YOU FEEL INTIMIDATED BY THE ACHIEVEMENTS OF AKI AND PAWPAW LOOKING AT YOUR RESEMBLANCE?
I don’t feel intimidated. It is not in my nature to feel so. It’s God that blesses someone. So God has blessed them and I believe that bigger portions of that God’s blessings is still there for me to grab if I remain faithful which I have promised Him I will remain. It’s just a matter of time. As a matter of fact, they are my “ogas”, they don’t joke with me especially Aki (chinedu ikedieze) “that one na my oga kpatakpata”. He buys me things, he gives me money etc. in fact, they are two great guys I will forever remain grateful I met.
DO YOU HAVE A FAVORITE ROLE OR ARE YOU A MAN OF ALL ROLES?
When acting is your talent, you can do anything. I am a man for any role, I have the talent to interpret any role and that’s what makes a good actor, so I don’t limit myself to particular role. Take note, I don’t assign roles to myself. The directors know what they want from every actor.
OUTSIDE NOLLYWOOD, WHAT WOULD YOU HAVE VENTURED INTO?
Honestly communication and entertainment is part of Jackneko. I am a graduate of Mass Communication and nothing stops me from going into the field to practice. Jackneko is a stand-up comedian outside Nollywood. One thing that is crystal clear is that, I am where God made me to be because, if I were not in Nollywood, probably I may still have being doing different things to see the one that will work, but thank God I discovered my talent and its purpose on time.
DO YOU FEEL INTIMIDATED BY THE HEIGHTS OF OTHER BIGGER PERSONS YOU MEET?
(LAUGHS) Come on man, did I hear you say intimidated? Come on, inferiority complex doesn’t have a single room in my mansion. It’s never a part of me to feel inferior or intimidated. Maybe it did when I was very tender, but now I am a mature man. I have grown above such silly feelings.
IS JACKNEKO MARRIED OR IN A RELATIONSHIP?
(LAUGHS) Jackneko is single and not in any relationship.
HOW ARE YOU COPING WITH THE STARDOM OF A FAST RISING CELEBRITY?
(LAUGHS) My brother! Delta boy like me? Anyway na our way na! We can cope with anything. As for me, I am coping fine. I know I can’t please all and also, I can’t displease all as well.
WHAT IS YOUR MESSAGE TO YOUR FANS OUT THERE?
My fans should still expect my best because my best is yet to come. I just dropped some comedy skits for my YouTube channel,(pure talent TV or type Jackneko on YouTube) they should watch, get entertained and subscribe for more. They should expect more from the ever humble Jackneko.
FROM THE TOWER OF TRUTH