Known as one of the queens of Nollywood, Monalisa Chinda is one precious and dazzling acting talent that any good producer who want an actress who acts with boundless enthusiasm would want to have in his or her movie. She does her part very good in movies and is regarded as one of the best female actresses ever to grace the screen in recent times.
Often believed to be a half-caste, Monalisa Chinda, at some point, appeared in two out of every five English Nollywood movies released. She was one of the more unique personalities to emerge in the entertainment scene in the 1990s.
Monalisa Chinda Biography
Monalisa Chinda (born 13 September 1974) is a Nigerian actress, film producer, television personality and media personality born in Port Harcourt, Rivers State to Ikwerre parents. She is the firstborn in her family of two sons and four daughters. She attended Army Children’s School GRA for Primary and then Archdeacon Crowther Memorial Girls’ School, Elelenwo. Both schools are located in Port Harcourt, Nigeria. She obtained a degree in Theatre Arts from the University of Port Harcourt.
Monalisa’s first major movie was Pregnant Virgin, which she did in 1996 and subsequently, after she graduated in 2000, she did Above the Law and has done many others since then.
In 2007 her road to stardom kicked off when she started appearing in the television soap Heaven’s Gate. In 2011, she debuted as Executive Producer in the Royal Arts Academy movie, ‘Kiss & Tell’, which Emem Isong co-produced with her and Desmond Elliot directed. In 2012, she became one of the first of four Nollywood actors to be featured on the cover of Hollywood Weekly Magazine.
Chinda had described her call into the acting business as “divine”. Her parents wanted her to be a lawyer and she hadn’t quite made up her mind about what to study at the university. She simply went for it. Monalisa who had been part of school drama performances as a child was privileged to learn under Nigerian renowned playwright, Ola Rotimi.
She had featured in stage productions like Our Husband Has Gone Mad Again by Ola Rotimi and The Fight To Stop Female Circumcision by Amatu Braid.
In all, Monalisa had quite a humble and perhaps a comfortable beginning. As an undergraduate in 1996, Monalisa debuted her first professional appearance in the Nigerian movie, Pregnant Virgin. She also featured in a Nigerian television soap opera, Heaven’s Gate.
After her graduation, Monalisa gave a full time shot to her career as an actress. In no time she became one of Nollywood sweethearts and leading actresses. In early 2000, she dominated the movie scene. The reputable actress surprisingly has a down to earth personality amidst her daunting successes.
Monalisa moved from being an actress to a movie producer. She has featured in over 50 Nollywood movies including Golden Moon, Wrong Woman, Games Men Play Reloaded and the recent all-time success Weekend Get-Away where she served as both actress and Executive producer.
Monalisa Chinda as a behind the scene personality often works in conjunction with Nigeria’s leading production company, Royal Arts Academy. Monalisa’s productions with the company have produced some of the top-notch movies that Nollywood can boast of. She also works as a consultant in the academy.
Aside from the thespian profession, the actress had other media interests. She has a column (Monalisa Code) in the Saturday edition of The Sun Newspapers.
In 2014, Monalisa launched her own self-titled magazine, Monalisa Chinda Magazine which was short-lived with series of misunderstandings with her editors.
After the resignation of the first editor; another editor identified as Kelvin Keshi also followed. The former editor sued the actress for slander. Monalisa had described him in an interview as a “half-baked journalist” in 2013. Her publicist acknowledged the lawsuit, saying that her lawyers were handling it. They stated that Keshi was only an opportunist trying to take advantage of the “soft-hearted” diva.
The Magazine initiative in subsequent weeks was folded as the diva publicly called it quits with the editorial venture.
However, that would not be the last of her projects. In 2014, Monalisa took her talent to TV production. She launched her TV talk show, You & I with Monalisa, which airs on several Nigerian media channels – AIT, TVC, Channels Television and other DSTV platforms.
According to the stunning star, the idea behind the show is to address social situations, dissect them and proffer solutions using the tool of drama.
To a large extent, the Nollywood damsel is a conservative personality. This trait clearly shows in her shows and interviews. Monalisa Chinda is the Nollywood actress with class and a bold personality. She has an effortless dazzling and subtle charm that endears her fans to her.
Chinda has also won an over N100 million contract with Nigerian Telecommunication Giant, Glo, as the company’s brand ambassador. In 2011, she was crowned the “Face of Port Harcourt” during the annual Carnival in Rivers State.
In 2012, she featured on the cover of Hollywood Weekly Magazine. Amongst many others, Monalisa Chinda graced the cover of Genevieve magazine in May 2016. In her interview, she shared her romantic experiences so far as a star. She had earlier featured in the prominent Nigerian Lifestyle magazine in 2010.
Monalisa Chinda has participated in a number of charity works. She won the 2009 Afro Hollywood Best Actress Award at the Monte Carlo Television Festival. She was nominated for the Best Actress in a drama series at the Terracotta TV and Film Awards in 2010.
On April 1, 2019, Monalisa Chinda was issued Lagos high court, sitting at Igbosere renewed a bench warrant issued for the arrest of Monalisa Chinda Coker, over tax evasion. It would be the second time the actress is issued a warrant for evading tax.
The application for her arrest arose from a two-count charge accusing Coker of failure to file annual tax returns and income tax in respect of her company, Monalisa Code Productions, for six years. Monalisa Code Productions carries on its business from Lekki in Lagos.
On January 21, the prosecuting counsel, Y. A. Pitan told Justice Akintoye that Coker had not appeared in court since 2017 when the charge was filed against her.
Monalisa Marriage, Husband
Monalisa Chinda has had her fair share of drama in the movie industry. In 2009, Monalisa was all over the media for her marriage crisis. Her first marriage to Dejo Richards ended in 2009 over allegations of domestic violence and abuse. Together they had a daughter, Tamar Chinda.
Monalisa has been involved in a couple of high profile relationships. Despite her failed first marriage to Dejo Richards, the actress unequivocally maintains that “marriage is a better option.”
“I tried to make it work but it takes 2 people to tango. That’s the only thing I regret, raising my child without a father. It’s a bit painful. But I have to live with it…”
On February 20th, 2016, Monalisa Chinda wedded her second husband, Victor Tonye Coker, whom she said she has known since she was 14. The duo has been together since.
Monalisa Chinda Net Worth
Monalisa Chinda has an estimated net worth of N250 million. The actress was once signed to Globacom, an Indigenous Nigerian telecommunication company as a brand ambassador in a contract supposedly worth over N100 million.