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Antar Laniyan, a renowned veteran actor and skilled film director, has worked in the Nigerian film industry long enough to understand what works and what doesn’t.

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He has experience in both the English- and Yoruba-speaking cultures, making him an excellent arbiter and analyst of the health of our film business.

Antar talks about himself, the business, and some hitherto unspoken-of secrets in this interview with Weekend Groove.

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How did you come about the name Antar Laniyan ?

Although I am aware that Antar is an unusual name, Laniyan is not. A rival who vowed to marry a pregnant woman’s husband at all costs once existed.

This adversary tried all in his power to prevent my mother, who was pregnant, from giving birth to me. They uncovered some discoveries after I spent 18 months in my mother’s womb, and it turned out that my mother had to bribe this rival in order for me to survive.

She stated they had to search for a goanna when we reached my mother’s rival. The animal goanna is known as aworinwo in Yoruba, although regular Yorubas refer to goanna as “Antar.” They created a mixture for my mum using antar or goanna. After a few hours, I started breathing on my own, and my mother named me “Antar” after the animal.

What was your father’s reaction to you being named after an animal ?

The name was adored by my dad. Since my mother was unaware that he had a second woman in his life, she may come out and claim responsibility for my mother’s problems.

Would you say that becoming an actor has enriched your life?
Yes, but not in monetary terms. God has been nice to me in my career decision, and I appreciate and find pleasure in what I do.

I am not nearly where I want to be financially. Many people think I’m successful because they watch me on television, but I know Antar is impoverished because of what I have in my wallet (laughs).

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