Calm down. Timini Egbuson didn’t rig the 2023 presidential and National Assembly elections conducted on February 25th. He didn’t also fix the governorship and the state houses of assembly elections held 21 days later. However, he may have manipulated his victory in the 2020 edition of the Africa Magic Viewers’ Choice Awards.
In the build-up to the AMVCA – Nollywood’s most revered award – Timini Egbuson went all out to canvass for votes. He needed to win at any cost. The man from Bayelsa ended up victorious, and he was named the best actor in a drama (Elevator Baby).
He got the nod ahead of Swankey J.K.A (Living in Bondage), Efa Iwara (Seven), Gabriel Afolayan (Coming from Insanity), and Ramsey Nouah (Levi).
“Nobody remembers number two. Being nominated, I wanted to win,” he said.
“Anyone who knows me will know that I’m also a very competitive person. I understood the fact that it was a voting category. Meanwhile, everybody that was nominated had a wonderful performance, from Gabriel to Swanky JKA.
“I also knew that I have a strong fan base of people who love me. But then, when it comes to the actual voting, people can be indifferent in general, so there was the need to push.
“So, I wasn’t afraid or shy about doing it. Sometimes, people just need that push to do some things. And I knew this was going to benefit me in the long run. Having Best Actor for The Future Awards and then AMVCA on my resume is no joke.”
It’s indeed no joke, as audience award voting has always been an important part of the entertainment industry. Audience voting gives people a voice and shows that their opinions matter.
It also provides data that the organisers can use to improve and have a dialogue with the audience. And a meaningful audience interaction provides more visibility to sponsors.
But audience voting could be problematic. The best example was the FIFA Player of the Century. FIFA created this one-off award to decide on the greatest player of the 20th century.
Diego Maradona and Pele were joint winners of the award announced at the annual FIFA World Gala held in Rome on December 11th, 2000. But it wasn’t that straightforward.
FIFA conducted a public vote to decide the winner, and Maradona won the internet-based poll by a wide margin. The Argentine garnered 53.6 per cent of the votes against Pele’s 18.53 per cent. People complained that the nature of the polls meant a skewed demographic of younger fans would have seen Maradona play but not the Brazilian.
FIFA then decided to add a second poll and appointed a ‘Football Family’ comprising football journalists, coaches, and officials. The committee voted Pele as the best player of the century with 72.75 per cent of the vote. Thus, both were joint winners of the award.
For the AMVCA, if audience voting has to stay, it should be for live viewers to pick the best dressed of the night or any other areas unrelated to the performance. Why not let actual professionals or a pool of judges do the pickings in all the categories? Like the FIFA ‘Football Family’!
No offence to viewers voting for core areas like Best Actor and the like. But can I trust your judgment? Were you not persuaded online and offline? Didn’t you feel like a boxer who had been pummeled mercilessly against the ropes afterwards?
When Timini Egbuson was asked if he would adopt the same approach if nominated again, his answer was straight to the point.
“Of course!” he said.
“I want to win it three times in a row! When I get nominated next year, I will definitely even campaign harder. Trust me. I will!”
We trust you will. But the key aspect is getting your movie to be seen by audiences because when that happens, it will touch so many people in so many ways. It’s about tantalizing voters to watch, especially when over 10 different movies earn nominations for acting and best picture awards. Don’t you think that’s more professional?
We present Timini Egbuson’s biography.
Timini Egbuson’s Age
Timini Egbuson is 35. He was born in Bayelsa State on June 10th 1987. He’s a birthday mate of Amobi Okoye, who, at 19, was the youngest player in the National Football League history to be drafted in the first round.
His parents (who, out of what to call them, are Mr and Mrs Egbuson) got separated when he was a teenager. He’s the younger brother of actress Dakore Egbuson-Akande.
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Timini Egbuson: Education
We don’t know the reason behind it, but Timini Egbuson went to three primary schools. They are Greenspring Montessori, The Afro School, and St Catherine’s, all in Lagos. He got his secondary school certificate from Adebayo Mokuolu College, Ogba, Lagos.
In 2011, he graduated from the University of Lagos, where he studied psychology.
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Timini Egbuson’s Career
Timini Egbuson started acting a year before graduating from university. That was in M-Net’s soap opera, Tinsel, in 2010. He came into the limelight in 2013 after playing the role of Tobi in the TV series Shuga. His exploits on the show earned him a co-hosting role in GT Bank’s 2017 Fashion Week red carpet alongside Sharon Ooja.
He has been featured in movies like Fifty, Skinny Girl in Transit, Man Hunting with Mum, Tinsel, Fifty the Series, and Isoken. And starred alongside practitioners like Toyin Abraham, Tina Mba, Deyemi Okanlawon, Shaffy Bello, etc.
In April 2020, he joined several practitioners from Nigeria, Kenya, South Africa, and the Ivory Coast to raise awareness in the global fight to flatten the COVID-19 curve. The campaign was done through a 60-part miniseries on MTV Shuga.
Then, he won Best Actor in a Drama at the 2020 AMVCA.
“I feel good,” he said after winning the award.
“It’s indeed an honour that is quite humbling. I mean, considering that other people are equally talented and hardworking as I am. It’s a significant accomplishment that the diligence is finally being recognized. It is also motivating because now you’re there, you’ve done that, and more people are looking at you now. So, that keeps me going.”
In 2019, the Future Awards for Best Actor was in the bag. Then the AMVCA a year later. We reckon that when he started in 2010, Timini Egbuson never knew the plaudits would come his way so soon.
“Baba, it’s not soon o!” he said.
“I’ve been acting for 10 years. But I get you. See, it’s not rocket science. People that know me knew that I worked hard last year. Was moving from set to set and I treated every project with equal importance.
“I had worked on all media platforms. I had a web series; Skinny Girl in Transit, I had MTV Shuga running on terrestrial TV, I had movies in the cinema, and I had movies on Africa Magic.
“And that’s why I was excited about The Future Awards because it was based on merit. So, based on merit, I won. Based on the viewer’s choice, I won. Twenty-nineteen/2020 has been an exceptional year.”
Indeed, it was a glorious period for Timini Egbuson. But the choice of a career path to follow was the greatest decision he had to make. And despite the difficulties he faced, he said he realised it was more of a divine direction he received from God.
“I knew I was not going to do 9-5 because I am very restless,” he said.
“I knew that this waking up in the morning being in traffic won’t be what it will be. So, I started to look for alternatives. I knew I was not going to do ‘Yahoo’. I can’t be in a Police station or be in a cell. A lot of people at that time were going into that. Sometimes, guys will tell me: ‘Won’t you carry a laptop? This one, you are going to movie sets.’
“Even Dakore used to tell me at the time that there is no money in Nollywood. What will you be doing? That’s why from the beginning it might seem like it was strategic, but it was more of a divine direction that I got from God to make sure that I am building a brand as well that people want to see.
“What these other guys don’t understand is that you can’t only be a good actor. You have to be a marketable brand. There have been ups and downs, and I’ve just been genuinely doing it for the love of it. Out of everything I’ve tried doing; acting has been the most comfortable and the happiest one for me.
“There is a certain kind of sauce that I was bringing into the industry and without the risk of sounding cocky, nobody else was bringing that vibe. In 2017, I remembered I said, ‘Timini give it four years. If it’s not working, dust your certificate.’ I mean, I’m a Psychology graduate.”
One wonders what would have happened if things had gone south if acting didn’t work out.
“A lot would have happened,” he said.
“I could do marketing, branding, consumer psychology, voice-over. Could work on the radio; I mean, I was an OAP at some point with Rainbow FM, and I was learning under my cousin. There was so much that would have happened.”
But Dakore Egbuson would have ensured nothing happened to his kid brother in Nollywood. Favouritism, cronyism, and nepotism might be harsh words to use, but many believe his flight in the industry was fueled and powered by one of those isms.
“Everyone has a right to their opinion,” he said.
“I feel like if they check my resume and the project I’ve worked on and all the times I’ve been said no to, they will understand that in an industry like Nollywood, which is very much performance-based, you won’t be able to hide someone that is not talented under the guise of he’s my brother or family, for a long time.
“People are putting good money into the industry and at this point, only your talent can speak for you. Yes, she definitely has an influence. I mean, she’s my sister, and she’ll definitely look out for me. She’s been doing that for 33 years of my life.
“Yes, she’s advised me, coached me, and helped me become a better person, and that’s why that moment of her giving me that award at the AMVCA is one of the most precious moments of my life.
“Before I started auditioning, I have been following her to set for years. And when I was following her, the glam wasn’t as much as it is right now. There was no social media and people were just doing this for the sake of it.
“So, it gave me a clearheaded view of not expecting that much. I didn’t have high expectations, and I just moved in for the love of it, and that’s why when people come across me, they say I’m level-headed and humble. Dakore taught me all of that. I also understand that you are as good as your last job.”
Timini Egbuson’s Movies
Timini Egbuson has appeared in many movies and TV shows. Some of them are…
Man-hunting with Mum
The Missing Piece
The Girl Code
Skinny Girl in Transit
Fifty the series
The Smart Money Woman
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Timini Egbuson’s Awards
His talent has gone unnoticed, as he has won notable awards, recognition, and accolades. Some of these awards include:
2017 – Revelation of the Year, Best of Nollywood Awards
2019 – Prize for Acting, The Future Awards Africa
2020 Best Actor in a Drama (Movie/TV series), Africa Magic Viewers’ Choice Awards
2021 – Most Popular Actor, Net Honours
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Timini Egbuson’s Wife
Timini Egbuson is not married, and for now, he’s not thinking of marriage.
“Marriage is not what I am considering right now,” he said.
“Relationships can be very distracting, considering the level I am trying to get to in my career internationally. I feel like I need to focus.”
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Timini Egbuson’s Net worth
Timini Egbuson’s net worth is estimated at $2 million. His major source of income is from acting. Endorsement deals, presenting, modelling, and investment also form a bulk of his wealth. And the need for multiple streams of income?
“When I was starting, Dakore always told me there’s no money in the industry, and I get it,” he said.
“That’s why I had other things I was doing. They say, as a successful Nigerian, you must have about seven streams of income. So, I had that, and I’m still looking for other streams of income. So, if my helper is reading this interview now, the person should reach out to me abeg!”
Editor, over to you!
Timini Egbuson’s Cars
He has several cars in his garage, but the prominent ones are a Mercedes Benz C300, a Mercedes Benz CLA250, and a Toyota Camry.
On his 34th birthday in 2021, he got himself a Range Rover SUV. He can afford another car on his next birthday on June 10th. But it would be more significant to go to his alma mater and give out egg rolls. June 10, 2023, is National Egg Roll Day!
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Timini Egbuson’s House
There’s no information if he owns one. But he lives in Lagos.
Timini Egbuson’s Phone Number
We don’t have his phone number. But do not despair. You can follow him via Twitter (@_Timini) and Instagram (_timini).
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Timini Egbuson looks like the Nollywood version of Wizkid – someone who would champion the scaling up of the industry to international audiences, someone who would become the biggest film export out of Nigeria.
“If that’s what I’m just able to do, my work then is done,” he said.
“I’m not just another actor who wants to make so much money from Nollywood. I want to make a difference and inspire younger people. If I open that door and drop my shoes that I’m done, I’ll feel successful.”
Then, he won’t need to canvass for votes to clinch the Oscars!