Nollywood rivalry: Toyin Abraham seeks reconciliation with Funke Akindele, Mercy Aigbe

Nigerian actress, Toyin Abraham, took to social media on Sunday to praise her colleagues, Funke Akindele and Mercy Aigbe, as she urged for more positivity within the Nollywood film industry.

“Please, it is time we celebrate ourselves more rather than compete with ourselves. We need to create an ecosystem of more successful people so we can all have more capability to create more successful people,” she wrote.

She also admitted to a period of rivalry between her and Akindele that led to division among their fans but emphasised the importance of maturity and positive competition.

In her message, Abraham recounted her experiences in the early days of filmmaking, where she described a competitive atmosphere fueled by gossip and negativity.

She wrote, “If you guys knew the fierce competition to be number one in those days in the Yoruba industry, The fierce competition created camps, enmity, and many professional gossips. The number one cause of fights in the industry then was ‘he said, she said’ before the social media era.

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“In those days of the Yoruba film industry, Funke Akindele was like number one after the likes of Aunty Bukky and Aunty Faithia. I was the next in line. The competition was much and with many gossips in between, we became competitors and persona non grata.”

She commended Akindele’s recent box office success with a film grossing over N1 billion, as she credited Akindele for inspiring her to set higher goals and highlighted the need to support each other despite the competition.

She added, “But with time, age, and more wisdom, I have realised we can compete without being negatively competitive. Aunty Funke, I celebrate you for showing us what is possible. You are a winner. You sold over N1bn, you made it possible for other women to dream. You ran us street with that N1bn o, this year, many of us will move to N1bnand we pray God makes you bigger.

“Thank you for making great movies and selling them like your life depends on it. You taught other women to hustle harder. I had set box office records; Aunty came and beat them; today I am happy because she has challenged me to set higher goals.”

She concluded by pledging to post a tribute to Akindele in December, emphasizing the importance of supporting each other in the competitive landscape of the box office.

“Sis, let’s compliment each other even in competition at the box office, I owe you one post in December (only one o, I need to sell market…Lol). I pray that God will make all your dreams come true. I admire you and wish you all the best, “she wrote.

Celebrating Mercy Aigbe, she wrote, “You have contributed to the story of strong women in Nollywood. You made many women proud. Thank you for writing a better story for womanhood when the world is busy writing a different narrative about women. If you come to the cinema in December, I owe you one post (Lol, you know I need to sell market o). Thank you for not making the competition in December negative.”

Commenting on Abraham’s posts on Instagram, Aigbe wrote, “Awww my love, thanks. It was so fun at the cinema with you! Anytime I relieve the memory, I laugh. Thanks for making sisterhood what it is! We all are all queens and winners. December loading. You know I gat you always.”

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