The Nigerian movie industry has grown to become one of the largest and prolific entertainment industries in the world today. Asides the number of interesting movies that get churned out daily, Nollywood actors and actresses have continued to excel both locally and internationally, with some getting Oscar nominations. More so, the industry has offered a level ground for both males and females to excel in acting, producing, and directing. This has seen several actresses taking the center stage in Nollywood, standing among the richest in the industry, and also commanding a considerable amount of wealth like their male counterparts.
This writeup tends to explore 10 of the richest Nollywood actresses in 2020, and it has nothing to do with their age or the number of years they have been involved in acting, but more about how much they have been able to acquire from their acting career and other endeavors. It is pertinent to point out upfront that collating a list like this in Nigeria might be a herculean task due to the paucity of correct data.
The internet is rife with varying information, which can make it difficult to ascertain the actual net worth of these actresses. Moreover, it is an African thing to be modest when wealthy, so some might not be inclined to flaunting their wealth in the media. However, this list is based on an estimation, considering how much they make from their movie roles, endorsement deals, other ventures, and their lifestyles (houses and cars). Here is an updated list of the richest actresses in Nollywood.
1. Genevieve Nnaji
Net Worth – N1 billion
This beautiful and never aging actress makes it to the top of the list of the richest Nollywood actresses. Born in Mbaise, Imo State, Nigeria, on the 3rd of May 1979, Genevieve spent her formative years in Lagos. She was raised alongside her 7 siblings by an engineer father and a mother who was a teacher. She began her acting career as a child actor (age 8) in Ripples (a popular soap opera in the 1980s).
In 1998, she featured in the film Most Wanted, which is considered her breakthrough role in Nollywood. She has gone ahead to feature in over 200 movies to date. Due to her stunning looks, Genevieve has ventured into modeling and has had some very big deals. She also had a short stint in the music industry, releasing an album in 2004.
This stunning actress is one of the most successful in and out of Nigeria. Oprah Winfrey once referred to her as the Julia Roberts of Africa. She has received several prestigious awards and nominations, which include the 2005 Africa Movie Academy Award for Best Actress in a leading role, Black Reel Awards, Africa Magic Viewers Choice Awards, and Nigeria Entertainment Awards, to mention a few.
Her directorial debut movie Lionheart, which is the first Netflix Original from Nigeria was submitted for the 2020 Oscars by Nigeria but was disqualified for not meeting the language criteria. Genevieve also has a clothing line (St. Genevieve), which she launched in 2008. As of 2009, she was already one of the highest-paid actresses in Nigeria. Nnaji is the “Face of MUD” in Nigeria, and the actress has several other endorsement deals. All her various ventures in acting, producing, directing, and modeling has contributed to her wealth.
2. Rita Dominic
Net Worth – N972 million
Rita Dominic is arguably one of the best dressed of the actresses in Nollywood today, it seems her motto is ‘never to be caught unfresh.’ For a long time, she topped the list as the richest actress in Nollywood before Genevieve took that coveted spot with her Netflix/Lionheart deal.
Rita was born on the 12th of July 1975, and she studied Theatre Arts at the University of Port Harcourt. She belongs to the royal family in her state of origin (Imo), and her late parents were healthcare professionals. Growing up, she had always been involved in acting but made her official debut in 1998 with the film, A Time to Kill. She has gone ahead to feature in more than 100 Nollywood movies.
Her incredible acting skills have won her several awards, including the 2012 Africa Movie Academy Award for Best Actress in a Leading Role, The City People Awards (2004), Eloy Awards (2013), African Magic Viewers Choice Awards (2017), and several others. The Meeting, (a movie which she co-produced) Finding Mercy and Iyore are some of the most successful roles of Rita’s career, which brought her worldwide acclaim.
3. Omotola Jalade Ekeinde
Net Worth – N900 million
Omo Sexy as she is fondly called is one actress that has successfully built up her brand to transcend the movie and entertainment industry. She has huge followership across her several social media accounts and has managed to stay relevant, despite not appearing in any major role in recent times.
Omotola made her Nollywood debut in 1995 and has appeared in over 300 films. She has won several awards for her acting and humanitarian endeavors. Some of them include Africa Magic Viewers Choice Awards for Best Actress in a Movie/TV Series, Toronto International Nollywood Film Festival, City People Social Media Awards, MTV Africa Music Awards, Nigeria Entertainment Awards, Black Entertainment Film Fashion Television, and Arts Awards (BEFFTA), amongst others.
She has won over 40 international and domestic awards and is considered Africa’s biggest box office actress. Omotola is the first Nigerian celebrity to star in her reality TV show. She was part of the Oscars 2018 voting members and was also named one of the most influential people in the world by TIME magazine in 2013. The actress was listed among the highest-grossing movie stars one has ever heard of, alongside world-famous actors, by Yahoo.
4. Mercy Johnson Okojie
Net Worth – N828 million
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The much-loved actress is from Kogi state and was born in Lagos on the 28th of August 1984. She has featured in over 100 movies and has won several awards. Some of her well known and very juicy endorsement deals are with Pennek Nigeria Limited and Chi Limited’s Prime brand Hollandia Evap Milk.
Asides acting, she has diversified into movie directing and production. Mercy got a political appointment as the Senior Special Assistant to the Kogi state governor on entertainment, arts, and culture. The actress is married to the very wealthy Prince Odianosen Okojie and is involved in several personal business ventures.
5. Chioma Chukwuka
Net Worth – N756 million
Born in Lagos and hails from Anambra state, Chioma is one of the top richest actresses in Nollywood, having appeared in over 350 Nollywood movies. She has produced 8 movies and has won several awards. She has served as a brand ambassador for both international and Nigerian companies, including Globacom, Harpic cleaner, and Omo detergent. Chioma is also a mentor and public speaker; she launched her capacity building platform in January 2019. All these have added a considerable amount to her wealth, thus placing her among the richest actresses in Nollywood.
6. Funke Akindele
Net Worth – N720 million
Jenifa, as she is fondly called, is a well-celebrated actress in Comedy. She has taken advantage of the character ‘Jenifa’ to create a brand and name for her in the industry. She rose to prominence after she starred in the sitcom I Need To Know between 1998 and 2002. Her big break came when she appeared in the movie Jenifa as the titular character. She went ahead to create a TV show spin-off from the movie titled Jenifa’ Diary.
The actress started a new web series in 2019 titled “Aiyetoro Town.” She owns a film production company called ‘Scene One,’ and she made her directorial debut with the film “Your Excellency” in 2019. Funke has won several prestigious awards, and she is an ambassador to Irokotv. In addition to being a signed ambassador to Keystone Bank, the actress recently signed an endorsement deal with Waw Nigeria.
7. Ini Edo
Net Worth – N540 million
Ini Edo is from Ibibio, Akwa Ibom state. She ventured into acting in the year 2000 and has featured in over 200 films. In 2014, she was appointed as a United Nations Habitat Youth Envoy. She was a Globacom ambassador between 2006 to 2016, a brand ambassador for Noble hair, Slim Tea Nigeria, and @Mr Taxi_NG brand. In 2016, she was appointed the Special Assistant to the Akwa Ibom State Governor on Culture and Tourism.
8. Uche Jombo
Net Worth – N540 million
Uche Jombo Rodriguez is an actress, film producer, director, and screenwriter. She is from Abia state and was born in Enugu. For someone who studied Mathematics and Statistics at the University of Calabar, it must have come as a shock to those around her when she decided to venture into acting. Uche has an astonishing acting presence that shines through in most of her performances. After featuring in more than 200 Nollywood films, she started producing her films through her production company. The actress has written and co-written several well-received movies. She is an ambassador for Globacom and is the recipient of several awards for her charity support and acting career.
9. Oge Okoye
Net Worth – N432 million
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Oge Okoye is on number 9 on this list for several reasons. She is a very popular Nigerian actress who has been able to make a name (and of course money) for herself in Nollywood. Born in London on the 16th of November 1980, she later moved to Lagos to be with her family. She studied Theatre Arts at the Nnamdi Azikwe University Awka and began to feature in Nigerian movies in 2002. She has featured in several Nollywood movies and has been able to make a sizable amount of money from acting.
See Also: 10 Richest Nigerian Nollywood Actors
10. Clarion Chukwura
Net Worth – N360 million
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October is the Month of GRACE and GLORY…that is my prayer for Everyone in this last quarter of 2019. Remember that Salvation is the Key…cause what is most important is how you will feel when your eyes are about to shut for the last time; with how you are living that life now, how will you feel? Expectantly full of Joy, or Fearful, afraid to die cause you don't know where you are going? Scared cause you didn't care and didn't prepare for where you will end up? Or, simply don't care right now? Tick tock…it's ticking…please think about it….I Love You and CHRIST Loves You Much More.
For someone that began acting in 1980, Clarion Chukwura has been around for over four decades and is one of the most talented actresses to come of Nollywood. She has a knack for aptly interpreting roles, which has earned her continuous relevance in the movie industry. Her role in the soap opera, Mirror in the Sun, brought her into the limelight. She is a recipient of several awards and a traditional title from Onitsha, Anambra State, which is her state of origin.
Clarion was recognized by the United Nations as a Peace Ambassador for her Charity works across Africa. She is a mother to ace music video director- Clarence Peters. Till today, she remains one of the most influential people in the Nigerian movie industry and has earned an incredible amount of money. However, she stays off social media and prefers staying low key, despite being successful.
N.B: This list isn’t exhaustive in any way as some of the richest Nigerian Nollywood actresses didn’t make it to the top 10. Worthy of mention is Regina Daniels; the 19-year-old actress has risen beyond the controversies that appear to trail her to make a worthwhile career for herself. Some other very rich and successful actresses in Nollywood include Kate Henshaw, Adesua Etomi, Patience Ozokwor, Omoni Oboli, Daniella Okeke, Stephanie Okereke, Mary Remy-Njoku, and several others.