For Olu Jacobs, it has been an illustrious career. One with many highs and achievements.
Born in July of 1942, the now veteran actor starred in so many international movies while being a pioneer of the Nigerian movie industry that we now know as nollywood. Seen as a bridge between the old actors and the new ones, he’s regarded as one of the most influential African actors.
He was trained at the Royal academy of dramatic arts In England, he had worked with a few theatres in England and starred in some international movies, including British television shows and series like; The Goodies , till death do us part, Barlow at large and a host of others.
His most famous appearance in an international movie was in John Irvin’s war film, “The dogs of war” in the 80’s
Back home he has featured in many blockbuster Nigerian movies, tuning to the number of over a hundred and twenty movies.
A legend in every right, The Kano born Thespian has etched his name in the sands of Nigerian entertainment. Inspired by Herbert Ogunde’s theatre performances in Kano in his young days, he would go on to study Acting in England when he left Nigeria.
It’s safe to say that he has had a glorious career and we had looked forward to more iconic appearances on our screen from the very well spoken veteran, until he made a public appearance a few days ago. Prior to that appearance at an award giving ceremony where he had bagged a lifetime achievement award, he had been away from the public eye and there had been rumors that he was either dead or very ill, these rumors were refuted everytime by his family but recently in an interview, his wife and veteran Nollywood actress, Joke Silva revealed that her husband of 32 years is suffering from Lewy body dementia.
Lewy body dementia is a progressive type of dementia after Alzheimer’s disease, this ailment occurs when protein deposits develop in nerve cells in the brain region and this affects thinking, memory and movement. It is progressive which means it gets worse overtime.
In a clip from the award ceremony, he didn’t seem to know what was going on around him. He was surrounded by loved ones including his wife who couldn’t take her hands off him.
It was an emotional sight to behold especially since we knew Mr Jacobs to have been a vibrant and talented man.
While this is a sad development, it is also important that we look back at his hay days and remember that he blessed us with his immense talent and professionalism.
Lewy body Dementia currently has no cure and can only be managed and we hope to still have him around regardless, because Dementia or not, the 80 year old veteran was and still is our Nollywood Darling and we love him.