22 World-Famous Celebrities You Didn’t Know Were Nigerians

Image: Esquire.com

By: Franklin Ugobude | 6 Month(s) ago

You know how Nigerians love to hear that their own is doing good?

We have some of the finest international superstars. There’s the rapper Wale who we wrote about here, Chiwetel Ejiofor from 12 Years a Slave, Tinie Tempah who we featured here, John Boyega from Star Wars, Uzo Aduba from Orange is the New Black, Seal the ‘Kiss from a Rose’ singer and David Oyelowo from Selma.

These are the ones we are very sure of their Nigerian root. But here are a few we know you didn’t know were Nigerian!

22. Tracy Ifeachor

Tracy is a British Nigerian television and theatre actress best known for playing the role of Abigail Naismith in both parts of the Doctor Who Christmas special, The End of Time.



21. Carmen Ejogo

Carmen was born to a Nigerian father and a Scottish mother in London. Carmen Elizabeth Ejogo is a British actress and singer. She began her career as a teenager in London, hosting the Saturday Disney morning show from 1993 to 1995.



20. Dayo Okeniyi

Dayo Okeniyi was born and raised in Lagos before the move to the United States. Oladayo A. “Dayo” Okeniyi is a Nigerian-American actor, popularly known for playing the role of Thresh in The Hunger Games and Danny Dyson in Terminator Genisys.



19. Zain Asher

This might come as a shock to those of you who don’t know but Zain is Nigerian and actually sister to Chiwetel Ejiofor (who we mentioned above). Zain Ejiofor Asher is a British news anchor at CNN International based in Atlanta. She currently anchors CNN Newsroom weekdays at 2:30 pm ET on CNN International. Previously, Asher co-anchored CNN Newsroom at 1 am ET on CNN America



18. Hope Wilson

Hope Olaide Wilson who speaks Yoruba, French and English fluently moved to the states in the late 90s. She is an actress and producer, known for I Can Do Bad All by Myself (2009), After the Dark (2013) and Faith and Dreams (2010).

LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 26: Actress Hope Olaide Wilson poses in the press room during the 41st NAACP Image awards held at The Shrine Auditorium on February 26, 2010 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Charley Gallay/Getty Images for NAACP)


17. Sophie Okonedo

Sophie was born to a Nigerian father and a Jewish mother and is a British actress. She received an OBE in the 2010 Queen’s Birthday Honours. Okonedo began her film career in 1991 in the British coming-of-age drama Young Soul Rebels.



16. Richard Ayoade

If you remember ‘The Watch’, the 2012 comedy that featured Jonah Hill and Ben Stiller amongst others, then you should know this guy. He was one of the lead roles in the movie. He was born to a Nigerian father and a Norwegian mother. He is an English actor, comedian, writer, director, and television presenter. He is best known as Maurice Moss in The IT Crowd — for which he won the 2014 BAFTA for Best Male Comedy.



15. Ashley Madekwe

Remember Victoria Grayson’s assistant from Revenge? The same social climber? Yes, the role was played by one of ours by name Ashley Madekwe. Ashley has a sexy British accent and was born in London.

PASADENA, CA - JANUARY 12: Actress Ashley Madekwe attends WGN America's Presentation of the upcoming drama 'SALEM' premiering Spring 2014, at Winter TCA held at The Langham Huntington Hotel and Spa on January 12, 2014 in Pasadena, California. (Photo by Jerod Harris/Getty Images for WGN America)


14. Taio Cruz

Taio Cruz was born in London to a Nigerian father and a Brazillian mother. He is a British singer, songwriter, record producer, rapper, and entrepreneur. Who knows his actual name may be ‘Tayo’?

Taio Cruz Wallpaper


13. Toks Olagundoye

Olatokunbo Susan Olasobunmi Abeke “Toks” Olagundoye is a Nigerian television and film actress, writer, and producer. She is known for her role as Jackie Joyner-Kersee in the ABC-TV sitcom The Neighbors. She was born in Lagos to a Nigerian father and a Norwegian mother



12. Nnamdi Asomugha

Nnamdi Asomugha is a former American football cornerback. He played college football for the University of California, Berkeley, and was drafted in the first round of the 2003 NFL Draft by the Oakland Raiders. He’s the reason Nigerians refer to Kerry Washington as “our wife” because she’s married to him



11. Adewale Agbaje

Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje is a British actor and former fashion model of Nigerian origin. He is best known for his roles as Lock-Nah in The Mummy Returns, Nykwana Wombosi in The Bourne Identity, Mr. Eko on Lost and Simon Adebisi on Oz.



10. Nonso Anozie

If you are a fan of Game of Thrones, you’ll remember this guy who met the mother of dragons. He is proudly Nigerian people and has worked on stage, film, and television.



09. Caroline Chikezie

Caroline was born in England to Nigerian parents and is best known for playing Sasha Williams in As If, Elaine Hardy in Footballers’ Wives and the Cyberwoman in Torchwood



08. Hakeem Kae-Kazim

Hakeem Kae-Kazim is a Nigerian actor best known for his work in the Starz television series Black Sails and his portrayal of Georges Rutaganda in the 2004 drama film Hotel Rwanda.



07. Olurotimi Akinosho

Olurotimi Akinosho better known by his stage name, Rotimi, is an American singer-songwriter, actor and model. He’s best known for his roles as Darius Morrison on the Starz Network’s Boss, and Dre on Power.



06. Adetomiwa Edun

Sir Elyan from popular TV show ‘Merlin’ is a Nigerian too! The multi-lingual actor was born to a Nigerian father and a mother who is half-Ghanaian and half-English.



05. Adepero Oduye

Adepero Oduye is an American actress who was in the 12 Years a Slave movie. Oduye began appearing in short films such as Water and Fall, and in 2006 appeared in the independent drama Half Nelson. After several roles in the off-Broadway production, in 2009, she debuted on Broadway in the musical Fela!



04. Tyler the Creator

Tyler Gregory Okonma, better known by his stage name Tyler, The Creator, is an American rapper, songwriter, record producer, musician, graphic designer, music video director, and actor from California.



03. Donald Faison

Donald Adeosun Faison is an American actor, comedian, and voice actor best known for his leading role as Dr. Chris Turk in the ABC comedy-drama Scrubs, and a minor role as Murray in the film Clueless.

SCRUBS -- NBC Series -- Pictured: Donald Faison as Chris Turk -- NBC Photo: Chris Haston


02. Gbenga Akinnagbe

Gbenga Akinnagbe is an American actor and writer, best known for his role as Chris Partlow on the HBO series The Wire.



01. Jidenna

The classic man, Jidenna, real-named Jidenna Theodore Mobisson is a Nigerian of Igbo decent. He was born to a Nigerian father and an American mother.

Image: Esquire.com

Image: Esquire.com


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