Veteran Nollywood filmmaker, Chico Ejiro, is dead.
He died in the early hours of Christmas day from a seizure. He only just concluded directing his new movie on Christmas Eve.
Ejiro was famous for his blockbuster movies in the 90s.
He produced movies like Silent Night, Blood Money, Deadly Affair, among several other notable films.
In a phone conversation with The PUNCH, his colleague and close friend, Zik Zulu, said, “Yes, it is true, Chico Ejiro is dead.”
The President of the Actors Guild of Nigeria, Emeka Rollas, confirmed the filmmaker’s death.
He said, “I just learnt of his death. The news of his death is so devastating. I do not know the cause of his death; I am still calling around to get the correct information and I am waiting for his association ― The Association of Movie Producers ― to make a statement.”
However, a source close to the deceased revealed that Ejiro died about 2 am on Christmas Day.
“He was ill about five weeks ago and he was rushed to a hospital in Surulere where he was placed on admission. After about a week, he was discharged and he went back home to recuperate.
“From what he said, he had high blood pressure that led to some heart complications. He was recuperating and got better. He even started a production that he was shooting about four days ago but he was not fully involved.
“He was just like the supervising director. He will go to the location and supervise them, so, we all felt good. Although he kept saying that he had not gotten back to his full health; he was still very weak. We were shocked about his death because he talked to some of his friends till late last night. I learnt he died about 2 am this morning,” the source said.
His remains have been deposited at the morgue.
Before his death, he held the Nollywood director’s record with the highest number of released movies. He says he has produced and directed over 85 films in his career in three decades.
Ejiro, who studied Agriculture in school, was drawn into video production because Nigerians would not buy blank video cassettes.
The filmmaker was the younger brother of veteran filmmaker, Zeb Ejiro. He was married to Joy Ejiro, and they have four children.
SaharaReporters, New York