Ghanaian actress Efia Odo caused a commotion with her semi nude outfit at the recently held 4syte Music Video Awards at the Kempinski Hotel in Accra last week Saturday. Her see through outfit which revealed her underwear, provoked negative comments from some of the guests as they murmured in disgust at the 2018 Ghana Movie Awards winner. However, her presence drew heavy media attention as the press took countless photos and videos of her. Coincidentally, this act occurred a few weeks to the official opening of her new wine retail shop called ‘South Africa Wines’ on the 29th of November 2019 at Afrikiko Village at Sankara Round about in Accra. Some celebrity lovers have therefore deemed it a well calculated publicity stunt.
‘Hype’ is needed to get certain things going in the world of ‘Showbizness’; even if it is negative. As a matter of fact, negative hype goes farther than positive hype in many cases. Remember the negative publicity generated by the photo of musician ‘Wendy Shay’ when she sat in a sexually provocative posture with former President of Ghana John Agyekum Kufuor? The photo went viral and after ‘Wendy Shay’ had enjoyed some media attention, she issued an apology. But then, her goal may have been achieved; if she deliberately did that for public attention. Another artiste who has propelled his career by thriving on negative publicity is multiple award winner ‘Shatta Wale’. From releasing a video that displayed an indecent act to insulting ‘Big shots’ in the entertainment industry in Ghana, he has ruled the social media trends in Ghana for sometime now. So simply put, Ghana is no different from Hollywood when it comes to ‘hype’ in the entertainment industry. American rapper 50 Cent, prior to the release of his debut album ‘Get Rich Or Die Trying’, deliberately drove a car with guns and ammunition to a police check point. He obviously wished to be caught and that’s exactly what happened. This was broadcast all over the news and 50 cent became the talk of town; just like his album that later sold over 10 million copies.
But chasing ‘hype’ has a price that sometimes could be damaging and regretful. In Ghana, the strong presence of culture, tradition and religion serve as checks to some of these ‘hype’ schemes. Afia Odo’s act at the 2019 4syte TV Music Video Awards may have branded her with an image that might not be appreciated by the target audience she intends attracting to the opening. In fact, wine is mostly drank by the affluent or middle and upper class society in Ghana. These are usually people who are very mindful of their public image and the friends they keep or who they associate themselves with. They are usually salary earners in corporate institutions or small medium enterprises. They will think twice before denting their hard earned reputation or their ambition in the world of business before attaching themselves to anything they deem below their standard. It is obvious that these kind of people will not accept Afia Odo’s recent ‘hype’ display and may not attend her grand opening. However, the media ‘hype’ was achieved on Saturday but as to whether she will not live to regret these few days of fame is another question.
By Jerry Wonder