Veteran actor, Bob Smith Jnr, popularly known as Diabolo, has taken a swipe at actress Juliet Ibrahim for saying that the new crop of producers are the ones placing Ghana on the world map.
The ‘Diabolo man’ described Juliet’s words as presumptuous and failed to acknowledge the hard work of pioneers of the Ghana movie industry.
Juliet Ibrahim in an interview with Joy News at the premiere of Salma Mumin’s movie ‘No Man’s Land’ said “We the young movie makers today are the ones putting Ghana movie industry on the map. When I visit Nigeria and I step out, people get to hear about the Ghana movie industry just because they hear that I am a celebrity from Ghana. With these movies, we can also sell our country positively to the world.”
Reacting to the statement on Hitz FM’s Daybreak Hitz on Thursday, Bob Smith Jnr indicated that regardless of how successful the current crop of producers are, they (the veteran actors) paved the way for them.
“I find such a statement presumptuous on the part of an artiste who has become a star not very long ago, does she want to mean that her predecessors did not do enough for her to take the baton?” he queried.
“Let her apologize, it is not the best thing to say,” he said passionately.
The ‘Mama Mia’ producer attempted to prove the actress wrong by recounting some movies from back in the day which made it to the foreign market.
“Do you remember Kwao Ansah’s ‘Heritage’ and other movies? They hit international standards even before we came and Juliet’s generation followed, ‘Kukurantumi’, ‘African Timber’ were all Ghanaian movies that went international. So I find such a statement as “myopic”.
He added that a new crop of filmmakers will surface in the movie industry as time goes on and hopes that the current generation will also be willing to hear such comments from them.
When asked whether the apparent absence of old actors from the industry necessitated Juliet’s comments, the ‘Diabolo man’ said veteran actors did their best to sustain the industry before the current crop took over.
He added that they are available for movie roles provided producers would engage their services.
Juliet and some of her colleagues, including, Kafui Danku, Yvonne Nelson, Yvonne Okoro, Lydia Forson, Salma Mumin, took the bold step and turned from being just actresses to producers of movies when the industry was no longer producing movies.