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Interview With Ghanaian Actor Prince David Osei


Interview With Ghanaian Actor Prince David Osei

Nothing good comes easily; so to be successful one must be determined and also work very hard. This is the perfect story of actor Prince David Osei.

Coming from a humble background his success in a very competitive industry is a result of hardwork and relentless efforts.

Unlike some people who had everything laid out for them to succeed, he went through all the hustles and today, the list of young successful actors in Ghana and even Africa is not complete without his name.

He recounts his early days in the industry when he had to wait for days and weeks to get a single role as an extra in movies.

“I remember those days my mum will tell me to focus on other things and forget about acting because it wasn’t so lucrative at that time, sometime I would wait for days to even get a single appearance in a movie and even when the movie comes out, unfortunately, my part will be  edited from it” he recounts.

Currently, he has a lot of movies to his credit. They include ‘In The Eyes of My Husband’, ‘Passion and Soul’, ‘Supremo’, ‘Agony of the Christ’, ‘Sin of the Soul’, ‘Behind The Heart’, ‘The Heart of Men’, ‘Shakira’, ‘Dons of Sakawa’, ‘Kiss Me If You Can’ among others. He also featured in the Hollywood thriller ‘The Dead’, in which he starred alongside American actor Bob Freeman.

Prince David was raised in Kokomlemle a suburb of Accra. He had his basic education at De Youngsters School and continued to Accra High School.

He furthered his education at the University of Ghana where he studied English, Sociology and Theater Arts.

Immediately after his national service at the Ministry of Tourism, he was employed by one of the banks but his passion for acting made him abandon his white tie job for the screen.
As a way of giving back to the society he has a foundation “PDO foundation for the needy” that carries out several humanitarian projects.

“ from where I’m coming from I know how it feels to be in need, or to struggle in life,  I don’t do this because every star or celebrity is doing it. I’m the 3rd of seven children and things were not always easy for me growing up so I see giving back as something I can do in my own small way to pay back the society that raised me.

Most of the donations and projects are not publicized because I don’t see it as something I should let everyone know” he says.

This week Times Weekend (TW) caught up with the daring actor to find out what he has been up to and how the movie industry has treated him so far;
TW: Prince how are you doing?

Prince: I’m good

TW: Good as in….?

Prince: Good as in all aspects of good; physically, financially, spiritually, sexually…….

TW: I can ….Do you ever walk without shades, looking at the time now it’s quite late.

Prince: Even at church, I wear shades, sometimes I’m driving at night and I even forget I have shades on.

TW: Why do you smoke and so your eyes are always red?

Prince: (laughing and takes off his shades)…oh it has become part of me

TW: Just for the swag or?

Prince: when I’m not on set I’m a very shy person and so I hide behind them

TW: I heard you got engaged sometime ago

Prince: yea I got engaged traditionally but the white wedding is yet to happen

TW:OK….So you have a wife now?

Prince: yes

TW: How about children?

Prince: I have a wonderful kid

TW: That’s cool? How come I haven’t seen your wife or kid before?

Prince: From where I come from we like to keep things on the low note…but we have been in the news several times, we have been on TV and in the prints but like I said that is my private life so I prefer it to be so.

TW: How’s the movie industry?

Prince: by God’s grace so far so good, it’s been good.
TW: Is it paying?

Prince: At the moment, to be honest with you, it’s not really vibrant like it used to be sometime back, mainly because of the current financial crunch and because of piracy so the investors and producers are afraid of investing their money into it.

Unfortunately for those of us doing the English movies, recently there has been a conflict between Ghana and Nigeria.

From 10th of September no Ghanaian movie will be released in Nigeria because they say we do not give them a slot here to release their movies.

TW: What if it’s collaboration?

Prince: if it’s a Ghana-Nigeria collaboration fine, but if it’s an all Ghanaian movie then they won’t allow. Even apart from that people don’t buy CD’s these days, they download the movies from the internet and copy it for their friends so most producers are pushing their attention into shooting the Twi movies.

TW: OK, so in the “good days” how much were you taking for a role?

Prince: it depends on who the producer is, the story line and even the role I have to play but sometimes when I look at the storyline and I see that it will also project my acting career, the money doesn’t really matter but that is not to say I will do the movie for free.

TW: so what’s the least amount you have taken for a movie?
Prince: the least I have taken is GHS 4000

TW: How about the highest?

Prince: the highest was from this Hollywood movie that I did “the dead”, it really paid well it changed my level …… (Laughing)

TW: Prince in most of our movies that we have seen, you are either kissing, or having sex and other romantic roles, is that your specialty?

Prince: sincerely speaking when I started doing movies that is not what I started with. I played different roles including that of a pastor, doctor, gentle guy and several others. It was when I did heart of men that people realized that oh! This guy can do these roles too.

TW: formerly, movie makers will say to us such roles were camera tricks or some editing stuff, but it seems that’s not true, for you who is in there, what really happens?

Prince: it depends on whoever is directing the movie and how he or she wants to send the message across

TW: Have you ever played a nude role before?

Prince: what do you call nude; is it showing my thighs or back or…

TW: Naked…with no clothes or underwear on

Prince: yea…we did that in Dons of Sakawa; I, Majid and John Dumelo. We shot naked with nothing on. We shot the scene at the cemetery; we were trying to portray how people do rituals. Luckily for us it was around 12midnight and there was nobody around even the crew was made up of guys only.

TW: You expect me to believe that?.. There were no ladies even on the crew?

Prince: Oh yes, there was no need for make up because it was late in the night and we made sure no ladies were on the crew. We used one of our hands to cover our manhood then the other to hold the coffin we carried. I think when you see the movie they showed our butts…

TW: yea

Prince ok…so you saw it? Was it nice?

TW: Well I don’t remember it’s an old movie, maybe I will go back and check….(laughing)……But sometime those scenes are too much, you watch a movie and all you see is kissing and sex, as if there is nothing else to do.

Prince: It got to a point where that was what was selling and so every producer wanted to do something like that but now the trend has changed.

TW:I know you are human and playing these roles; sometimes don’t you feel aroused or attracted to a fellow actress?

Prince: No, I never add pleasure to work, if I have to shoot with you I do it and everything ends immediately the director says cut. I keep acting such roles with different people all the time so if I get aroused by all of them what will happen then. For me it’s all about discipline.
TW:is your wife OK with what you do?

Prince: yes she understands the game, I knew her before I started acting.

TW:How did you meet?

Prince: at church, Royal House Chapel we were in the choir together

TW:You still sing at church?

Prince:No, because when I started doing the movies, I got really busy and I couldn’t really catch up with their activities but whenever I have time and there is a program, I help.

TW:Anyway I know majority of your fans are females, how do you relate to them?

Prince: whenever they come to me I smile, sometimes take some pictures or hug them; I appreciate them. Seriously, if the ladies don’t like you, you cant shine.

A fellow guy can say you are good but it’s the ladies who buy the movies and give their comments after watching it, it the ladies who will call whenever they hear anything good or bad about you, so me I think to shine the ladies have to love you.

TW: Have you had problems with some of these fans before………
Prince: (interrupts) …it does happen many times;some see you and they have a crush on you, some are so excited and they feel they want to posses you…..

TW: You have never felt you want to posses someone?

Prince: eeehm….. even if I want to its in my head, the person is my fan, at times you see very beautiful people you admire or adore but you have to let it end there because they are your fans

TW: You’ve not crossed that level before?

Prince: No,no

TW: are you sure?

Prince: sincerely speaking if I have, I won’t hide it from you.
TW: I hear you….Do you do anything else in addition to the movies?

Prince: I launched my Clothing Line sometime back, even as I’m talking to you now, we going to have a launch out of the country in September.

TW: Why not down here?

Prince: I have launched it hear already…

TW: I know but I was thinking you could continue promoting it down here because it’s not so popular.

Prince: I have a shop in Dzorwulu but at the moment it’s closed because I want to do some renovations. Very soon my line will be very loud here. The reason I want to have this one outside is to promote my foundation, proceeds from there help in carrying out activities of the foundation.

TW: You do you own designs for the your clothes or you have people who do it for you?

Prince: I create me own designs but I have people who sew them and bring them to life. Apart from that I do other stuff, I’m a business man.

TW: then you must have a lot of money then.

Prince: God has been good, but I have plenty of family members too so when anybody talks about my money the person should have my family members in mind…(laughing)

TW: you seem to be in almost every new movie, you are on posters in town, TV Adverts and almost everywhere… you just accept roles and play them?

Prince: most the time, the movies you see in town are stuff I have done a long time ago but because of the regulatory board, producers cant release the movie at anytime they want, they have to wait .

I can shoot a movie let’s say last year and the producer may release it this year maybe at the same time another marketer of another movie I shot will also release that movie around the same time so it’s just a coincidence.

personally, I see some movies in town and I know this is a movie I have done long ago, people also take advantage of the fact that you are in vogue now so any movie that they have shot with you, they rebrand it and give it different titles and design different posters and they sell.

TW: So are you repaid or…

Prince: royalties don’t work down here, some of them still use the voice overs I did some years ago.

TW: You speak very good Twi

Prince: yes I do

TW: And you have not starred in any local Twi movies yet?

Prince: Eeeeh…Nobody has called me for any local movie
TW: is it because you have branded yourself as an English speaking actor?

Prince: not necessarily, if they approach me and the script is good why not, I will, just that no one has approached me to do any of those movies. Sometimes when I’m acting I speak Twi to make it look real and local so I don’t distance myself from the audience.

TW: I know you have done a lot of movies, so far what has been you most challenging role ever?

Prince: It’s a movie I shot which is yet to be premiered..Off the hook; in the move I play the role of a psycho and this time not the usual madness that you will be shouting on the streets or scratching your body,this one was an intellectually “mad” person so in the movie I talk plenty and I feel I’m making sense but its meaningless, it was demanding because I had to maintain that throughout the movie and it really demanded a lot from me.

TW: it looks like you are comfortable with a particular group of people..Jackie, Martha Yvonne, Majid….

Prince: I’m comfortable with everyone but these are people I started almost around the same time with, we are colleagues and apart from acting we do a lot of things together. For Martha she is more of a sister because we do almost everything together.

TW: Prince thank you for coming it was good having you.
Prince :you are welcome.

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