Hot on the heels of another beef about accolades and recognition, Manzi Wa Nairobi rapper Nonini has ignited a controversy-this time dragging Oscar award-winning actress Lupita Nyongo into the mix.
The rapper juxtaposed the acting careers of Lupita and fellow Kenyan actor Edi Gathegi, insinuating that Gathegi’s studded resume deserved more praise in Kenya.
“Lupita only did 2 movies and that got Kenyans really excited and proud of having one of their own in Hollywood. But have Kenyans ever heard of Eddie Mua Gathegi? He’s Kenyan and has been in more than 15 Hollywood blockbuster movies!” posted the genge artiste.
36-year-old Gathegi was born in Eastlands, Nairobi but he grew up in California, USA. The US-based actor has featured in several top productions including Blacklist, X Men, Twilight sequel and House.
Lupita, who snagged the coveted Academy Award for her role in 12 Years a Slave, has featured in fewer Hollywood productions. But in addition to her acting, Lupita has also branded herself as a fashion icon. She has starred in several international advertising campaigns; she has also been named as the face of top cosmetics company Lancôme.
Coming to the defense of Lupita, one fan, William Agembo said: “Fame lies not in the quantity of the movies, but in the quality of the movies acted. Gathegi may have acted in twenty movies, but that alone does not raise the profile of an individual.”
Like Wahu’s fans complained when Octopizzo dragged her name in his rant about the Bingwa Awards accolade, Agembo opined naming Lupita in the post was unnecessary.
He said: “…it’s not good to compare the two that is: Lupita and Gathegi. You would have done better by telling us the achievements of Gathegi without dragging Lupitas name…”
“Eddie Gathegi is good… especially if u watched the movie Criminal Activities with John Travolta. If Eddie is to be famous and acknowledged in his motherland, he will shine under his own stage light. You can’t switch off Lupita’s for his,” opined Michael Malia.
Others blamed Gathegi’s lack of notoriety in the county to his failure to position himself as a Kenyan, with others asking when he last visited the country.
“I’ve seen him featured in movies and indeed he’s a very good talented actor, but to be honest I could not expect him to be a Kenyan. For someone to be recognised back at home, you need to appear in person,” Nyoks Earls said.