There are actually funny Nigerian actors that can hardly act any other more profound movie roles than that of comedic expressions.
These Nollywood actors are different from the list of Nigerian stand up comedians that are also actor’s and popular names in the Nigerian movie industry.
In fact, there was a time in the history of Nollywood when these funny Nigerian actors were the center of visual entertainment.
That era was filled with so much laughter that many thought the trend would not be watered by any other development in the movie industry.
Even though these names to be mentioned here are not as as famous as some of the most handsome Nigerian actors now parading themselves as the face of the industry.
They are on the same league, the only only major difference is that they are more focused on the business of laughter and we appreciate them for that.
Do not confuse the above paragraph to mean these these actors that feature in other movie roles.
But they are more focused on comedy or rather are more popular for those comic roles.
I will be making mention of both the old and pot belly ones, those actors so not concern with their aesthetic values and so cannot be counted among the hottest Nigerian male celebrities.
Before we start i would like to make it known that on this particular celebrity Naija News i will adding names of maybe one or two dead comedy actors that are so hard to forget because of their contribution to the art of comedy on film in Nigeria.
Funny Nigerian Actors Ruling Nollywood
1 Nkem Owoh
Nkem Owoh is undoubtedly one of the funniest Nigerian actor to have featured on the Nigerian movie screen.
His role as an actor started way back in the 80,s when cinema in Nigeria was more about stage plays and soap operas.
The most notable mention of his earlier acting milestone was when he appeared in the movie adaptation of Things Fall Apart, a novel written by Nigerian author Chinua Achebe. Published in 1958.
But his big break came when he became the face of comedy in Nigeria in 2000 onward with movies like Ukwa and Long John.
He studied studied engineering at the University of Ilorin.
And as proof of his talent and contribution, in 2008 he won the African Movie Academy Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role.
Born: 7 February 1958
Origin: Amagu Village, Udi Town, Enugu State Nigeria
2 John Okafor
Just look at that face!
His kind of comedy is heavily characterized by the absurd both in form and thought. The theme of his comedy is scripted to present humor through stupidity and also the exaggeration of human foolishness.
It is said he has acted in more than 200 movies including Mr.Ibu (2004), Mr.Ibu in London (2004), Police Recruit (2003), 9 Wives (2005), Ibu in Prison (2006) and Keziah (2007).
In April 2019 it was rumored that the actor was down with stroke, a rumor he debunked. According to him:
“Na so I hear oooo. I am hale and hearty. I am speaking from my house, in Lekki.
“I have been receiving calls from across the world since today. I don’t know who is spreading this false news about me. I don’t know what they saying.
“Na their papa get stroke.”
Born: 17 October 1961
State of Origin: Enugu State
3. Charles Inojie
He officially joined Nollywood Nigerian movie industry in 1999. Becoming the assistant director at Lancelot Oduwa Imasuen’s production company.
In 2016, members from the Screen Writers Guild of Nigeria (SWGN) would unanimously appoint him as president of their labor union.
Charles Inojie is one of the most successful comedy actor in Nigeria. In fact he is currently one of the most popular comedy actor in the country.
Inojie is married to his wife Obehi Obhiseh, and together they have two children.
Born: 4th March 1970
State of Origin: village of Urowa, near Emu, Edo state
4. Ime Bishop
Isn’t that a clownish image of a Nigerian police officer wielding a pistol in one hand and a pestle on the other hand. Even though they have the same sound scheme, one is definitely more effective than the other.
Like i said earlier, Nigerian comedy films deal more in expressing the absurd. And this image explains it even better.
Forget the constant face of a jester, Ime Bishop or Okon Lagos as he is popularly called is an educated man. He graduated from the University of Jos with a Bachelors degree in Philosophy.
In 2016 he was appointed as a special assistant to the Governor of Akwa Ibom State, Udom Gabriel Emmanuel on Ethical and Social Reorientation.
Born: 15 July 1981
State of Origin: Nsit Ibom, Akwa Ibom State
5 Victor Osuagwu
He is also one of the old timers in the industry. He was among the most popular comedians during Nollywood golden age of comedy.
And he is a former president of the Lagos State chapter of the Actors Guild of Nigeria.
Osuagwu is also a Nigerian chief & bares the title of Ochibundu 1 of Udo Ancient Kingdom in Ezinihitte Mbaise LGA of Imo State.
He is married to Roseline Nchelem, whom he met in 1990 and married in 2002.
Responding to the hardship in the country he said , “Though I travel to other countries for pleasure and business, I have never thought of leaving Nigeria (for good) despite the hardship one faces every day. If I run because of the hardship in the country, I am not helping the situation. If I leave Nigeria now, I will come back someday and the same problem might still be there. I know people who have left the country and I am not sure things are better for them abroad.”
State of Origin: Imo State, Nigeria
6 Francis Odega
If you watch Nigerian comedy movies then the face of Francis Odega is one that you surely must have come across.
There is one very funny scene from the movie House of Gold by Yvonne Nelson that still cracks me up till tomorrow.
It involved Francis Odega (who is a driver) and the homosexual son of his dead boss.
The rebuke from Francis was such a comical response that it was just so funny to watch.
This funny Nigerian actor is one of the pioneering comedians of the popular Night Of A Thousand Laughs comedy show.
He was made very popular when a scene from the movie series Back From South Africa hit the internet with notable people like 50 Cent and Tinie Tempah sharing the video clip of the scene on Instagram .
He graduated from Ambrose Alli University with an Economics degree.
State of Origin: Aniocha North , Delta State , Nigeria
7. Osita Iheme
This man right here and his another midget counterpart was all it took for small people to finally clinch their spot in the entertainment industry in Nigeria.
They arrived at the right time and their brand of comedy was unique because of their size and obvious talent. And for those reasons the Nigerian comedy movie consumers just couldn’t get enough.
That hunger was all it took to make Osita a household name. Known not just for comedy but other interest roles in movies of different kinds.
He is widely known for playing the role of ‘Pawpaw’ in the film Aki na Ukwa alongside Chinedu Ikedieze.
In 2011, he was honored as a Member of the Order of the Federal Republic (MFR) by President Goodluck Jonathan .
He bagged Lifetime Achievement Award at the 2007 Africa Movie Awards and Best Actor Africa Magic Viewer’s Choice Awards 2014.
Born: February 20, 1982
State of Origin: Mbaitoli , Imo , Nigeria
8. Chinedu Ikedieze
He is the other midget. Who alongside Osita Iheme broke into the limelight with the movie Aki Na Ukwa.
They started together and over the years became a pair in the industry. It was normal until recently to always see the duo in every single film anyone chooses to participate in.
Just like Osita he was honored with Member of the Federal Republic, MFR award, but a year earlier before Iheme was honored with the award.
He also received the Lifetime Achievement Award at the African Movie Academy Awards in 2007.
Born: December 12, 1977
State of Origin: Iluoma Uzuakoli, Bende, Abia State ,
9. Okey Bakassi
He is one of the biggest stand-up comedian in the country. But his time on television as a comedy actor is so commendable that it is hard not to place him on this list.
His first opportunity to appear on camera came in 1993 through the television program ‘Fortunes’ where he played Nick, one of the Johnson’s bodyguards.
And was made possible by popular movie producer and director, Zeb Ejiro, who he had met almost immediately coming over to Lagos from Port Harcourt as a Youth Corps member (Nysc).
Born: October 23, 1969
State of Origin: Mbaisi, Imo State
10. Sunday Omobolanle
Sunday Omobolanle or Papi Luwe as he is fondly called is a veteran comic actor in the Nigerian movie industry.
In recognition of his contributions to the Nigerian film industry, he was bestowed with a National award, MON by Olusegun Obasanjo , the former president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria .
He was inducted into the Naija FM Hall of Fame at this year’s Naija FM’s Comedy Jam and Award Night which held on Sunday the 24th of November, 2019, at the Eko Hotels, Lagos.
Born: October 1, 1954
State of Origin: Oyo State
11. Funke Akindele
Only few woman are to be found on our list of funny Nigerian actors and none is more qualified than Funke Akindele, popularly known as Jenifa.
She is best known as the lead character in the show Jenifa’s Diary, for which she was named Best Actress in a Comedy at the 2016 Africa Magic Viewers Choice Awards.
But was made popular by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA )-sponsored sitcom I Need to Know, which ran from 1998 to 2002.
She is the CEO of Scene One Film Production. And made her directorial debut in 2019 political drama film Your Excellency.
Born: August 24, 1977
State of Origin: Ikorodu, Lagos State , Nigeria
12. Helen Paul
13. Funny Bone
14. Afeez Ayetoro
They call him Saka and he is a popular comic actor.
Like Helen Paul he is one of those Nigerian celebrities that studied theatre arts.
He obtained a Bachelor and Master of Art degree in Theatre art from Obafemi Awolowo University and the
University of Ibadan respectively.
Oyetoro is married to Olaide Oyetoro. They have two sons Abdullahi Oyetoro and Munim Oyetoro, and a daughter Rufiat Oyetoro.
Born: August 20, 1963
State of Origin: Oyo State
14. Ada Ameh
15. Chiwetalu Agu
This veteran Nollywood actor has a very rich acting profile. And is known by his very strong roles.
For many people he is that man who in his movies loves killing and oppressing people through diabolic means.
And also for this particular viewers he is also easily one of the funniest comic actors in the country. As man of humor he is on the same level with funny Nigerian actors such as Victor Osuagwu, Nkem Owoh and Charles Inojie.
As a comic actor he is among those who helped build the foundation of film comedy in Nollywood.
As a veteran actor he was part of the following television programs, Things Fall Apart and Ripples.
State of Origin: Enugu State , Nigeria
16. Sam Loco (dead)
He is one of those dead funny Nigerian actors that we just hate admitting has left us. And for that reason we try to bring up his name whenever we are given the chance to.
And this post is just another opportunity for just that.
Sam Loco was comedy in Nigeria. It was simple as seeing his image on a video cassette and instantly becoming hungry for visual entertainment.
But even the best cannot escape the hands of death. It was a sudden passing away of a great comedian and it was a painful experience for viewers of his films, worldwide.
During the Civil War , the comic actor fought on the Biafra side until he returned to Benin in 1968. While in Benin, he started the Ovonranwen Theatre Group with their debut production being Ogierhiakhi’s Obaiwape.
(25 December 1945 – 7 August 2011)
Do remember to check back, as this list on Funny Nigerian Actors would surely be getting future updates!