Lilian Umenwa popularly known as Princess Lee is an up coming actress and gospel musician. The beautiful actress, who is also a lawyer, talks about how she has been able to combine acting, law practice and musical career. She equally talks about life in the courtroom.
When did you start acting?
I started acting in 2005. I was appearing occasionally because of my school at that time, so my appearance in the movies then was just once in a while. The issue was that, as a law student, I had very limited time to act. But when I finished my education, I had time to face acting fully.
What university did you graduate from?
I graduated from Enugu State University of Science and Technology.
Are you dumping law for acting?
No, they are two different things. Acting is my passion, but so far, I have been able to combine the two very well. I have learnt to draw a suitable schedule for myself, and anytime I don’t have a matter in court, I am on the set acting. I have learnt to try and balance both, so I don’t think I will be dumping one for the other.
If you are to put acting and law on a scale of preference, which one will you pick first?
Acting is in me. It is a part of me. For instance, I write scripts and I can even direct. I prefer acting because I have what it takes.
So, which pays the bills more?
For now, it is acting because I have been getting lots of jobs lately.
Who do you look up to in the movie industry?
I love Genevieve Nnaji so much. She is well talented and she is one of those I look up to.
As a beautiful lady, how have you been able to handle your male fans?
I respect my fans a lot and I always try to give them attention; but when they are crossing their boundaries, I humbly try to tell them I am not interested.
Have you been sexually harassed?
Not at all. I think this is because I didn’t just get into the movie industry as a greenhorn. I was already a musician and so they don’t bother me at all, because they know I have what it takes to interpret my roles very well. I already have some albums in the market, so I think that is why they tend to respect me.
What kind of music do you do?
I do gospel music.
How many albums do you have?
I have four albums.
How has it been transiting from gospel music to acting?
That has not been easy at all, because many of my music fans don’t understand why I am acting. On my Instagram page, I have had fans asking why I am doing acting, they have been questioning why I should leave gospel music for acting. Some of my fans tend to see acting as a terrain a gospel artiste shouldn’t tread on, and honestly, I have lost some of my fans because of this. However, I try to use every opportunity that I have to tell people that acting is not for bad girls; good girls also act.
What are the challenges you have been faced as an actress?
The challenge I have been faced with is combining law, music and acting all together. It is not easy but staying focused has helped me a lot.
What was your growing up like?
My growing up was all about books and I had fun too. My parents were academicians, so I had no choice but to get busy with my books. They ensured that education was always my priority at every stage, and I am very thankful for that because it helped me greatly.
As a child, were you a nerd or a social butterfly?
I think I was more into my books. I was more of a bookworm. I read all kinds of books and that has helped me greatly in my script writing too.
Are you into a relationship?
I am not in any relationship; my main concentration is on my acting and music. I have not given men a thought for now. I don’t think I have time for men now.
Where do you see yourself in five years?
I want to be a household name by then. I want to be known all over Nigeria, Africa and the world for music and acting.
What was your parents’ reaction when you told them you wanted to act?
My parents accepted it when I told them I was going into acting, because they were not surprised. Acting and music have always been a part of me since I was a child. I took part in church drama and I was in the choir too as a child. However, my parents ensured that I finished my education before I went into entertainment full time.
What are you working on lately?
I am working on a soap opera right now, and this will be aired on most of the television stations nationwide. I wrote the script and I will also be playing a role in the soap opera.