AGN Suspends Filmmaker Adanma Luke, Bans Riverine Shoots Over Jnr Pope’s Death

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The Actors Guild of Nigeria (AGN) has suspended filmmaker Adanma Luke indefinitely over the death of actor Jnr Pope Odonwodo.

The talented actor and four colleagues reportedly drowned while returning from a movie shoot, ‘Another Side of Life’ produced by Luke, after their boat capsized at the waterside of River Niger Cable Point Asaba, Delta State.

Jnr Pope was confirmed dead after his body was found and was taken to three different hospitals

However, the bodies of the three other persons are still missing.

AGN President Emeka Rollas announced Luke’s suspension in a statement on Thursday, as well as other pronouncements.

Following Jnr Pope’s death, the AGN President said the Guild has indefinitely suspended films involving riverine areas and boat riding.

Furthermore, he said movie shootings will not occur on 11 April in any location nationwide.

The statement read in part: “Following the tragic incident of boat mishap that claimed the life of Mr John Paul Odonwodo aka Junior Pope and four other crew members at the waterside of River Niger Cable point Asaba on 10 April 2024 on a movie set titled ‘The other side of Life’ produced by Adanma Luke

“The leadership of the Guild has taken the following decisions: (1) All films that involve riverine areas and boat riding are at this moment suspended indefinitely, (2) no shoot on all locations Nationwide on Thursday, 11 April 2024.

“(3)The film titled ‘Another Side of Life’ is suspended indefinitely (4) No actor is allowed to work with Adamma Luke as a producer till further notice. (5) While we keep searching for the bodies of the remaining persons, may their souls rest in peace.”

Rollas on Thursday confirmed that Jnr Pope died after all efforts to revive him were unsuccessful.

On Wednesday, some Nollywood actors and actresses expressed fears that actor Jnr Pope may have died in a boat accident involving him and some colleagues.

Filmmaker Sam Olatunji announced on Instagram that the industry lost Jnr Pope to the incident.

Also, the Delta State Chairperson of the Actors Guild of Nigeria (AGN), Emma Onyemeziem, told Vanguard that the actor’s remains had been taken to a morgue.

Before his death, the 39-year-old actor had shared a video of him and four others on his Instagram page travelling to the movie location on a boat.

In his video, he mentioned being the only child and raising three children.

He captioned the video, “See me lamenting. The risk we take to entertain you: crossing river 9ja yesterday with no life jacket. Na wahooooo Who does that ??”

The father-of-three escaped death in 2021 when a fire incident destroyed his house.

The late actor said he was so thankful to God for saving his entire family in a post on his Instagram handle.

Late Jnr Pope said his house went up in flames while his family was sleeping, but God intervened, adding that he was safe and no one sustained any injury.

In 2006, the late Jnr Pope joined the Nigerian movie industry (Nollywood) and started attending movie auditions and acting as a minor character in movies.

In the early days of his career, Pope usually played the roles of a bodyguard, palace attendant, and servant.

The late actor became famous in 2007 after acting in the Nollywood blockbuster movie Secret Adventures, directed by Tchidi Chikere.

He has starred in more than 150 Nollywood movies which include: “Secret Adventures”, “Mad Sex”, “Bitter Generation”, “Vengeance of Bullet”, “The Cat”, “The Generals”, “Wrong Initiation” among others.