Photos courtesy of Facebook
He’s an Actor, Model, Humanitarian, and well-rounded scholar who appears as a series regular role on “Swagger”, with Kevin Durant’s basketball drama series on Apple TV produced by CBS. He recently appeared in a guest starring role on Jamie Foxx’s “Dad Stop Embarrassing Me”. He will also be in the upcoming film, “I Want It All” in the role of Ty, alongside, Darrin Dewitt Henson, Rick Ross, Lil Durk, Nas, Busta Rhymes and more.
You may have seen him in his recurring role on the hit Showtime series, “Shameless” as Todd, an oversized scary kid with a big heart.
Catch him in “The Mr. X Family Show” on the Africa Independent Television network, Beyoncé’s “Black is King” film/music video, and in an upcoming American Drama Miniseries, “Little Fires Everywhere” starring Kerry Washington and Reese Witherspoon.
Ozie has appeared in an Adidas commercial with Childish Gambino and has also appeared in Louis Vuitton’s 2019 Men’s Spring Print Campaign.
Ozie, “Zmny” at age 13 recorded a song “Hater-Free” with R&B artist Ray J Norwood, Brandy’s brother. He also collaborated with other popular African and American Hip Hop artists. Ozie was the youngest to have a “Grammy Party” approved by the Grammy’s Recording Academy Governance.
Ozie is a role model for kids of all ages and uses his platform to help inspire and empower. As a Youth Ambassador, Ozie has touched many teens’ lives internationally. In Nigeria, he sponsors and donates to a youth charity group to help end racism and poverty in their communities. Ozie’s compassion compels him to go in the streets of Lagos around Christmas time to clothe and feed the impoverished. Ozie’s empathetic quality is honorable.
As a stellar student, Ozie received several Estella Awards due to his excellent grades and humanitarian efforts.
GO BANG! MAGAZINE: Where were you born and raised?
Ozie Nzeribe: I was born and raised in Monrovia, California.
GO BANG! MAGAZINE: How and when did you get started in acting and modeling?
Ozie Nzeribe: I stumbled into acting while in a recording studio making music. I was approached by an acting manager about a possible acting job. Although I was skeptical at first, I was talked into it by my mom.
GO BANG! MAGAZINE: Over the years, you’ve appeared in numerous tv series and more recently you’re working on “I Want It All”, alongside several Hip Hop heavy hitters. What can you tell our readers about that role and the show?
Ozie Nzeribe: Unfortunately, I’m not allowed to discuss details regarding the film until I get the greenlight from the producers. Guess you guys are just gonna have to wait.
GO BANG! MAGAZINE: Kevin Durant has a basketball tv drama series on Apple TV titled “Swagger” and you’re a regular on the show. How did you become a part of the show, please describe your character and what you like most about the role you play?
Ozie Nzeribe: I booked my series regular role on “Swagger” after my agency acquired the audition. I originally read for a different part, but instead booked my current role as Royale Hughes. Royale is a dyslexic sub-par basketball player with a wealthy dad and insanely unmatched basketball knowledge.
Kevin Durant’s “Swagger” Official Trailer
GO BANG! MAGAZINE: In addition to acting, you are also an international rapper, known to flow to Hip Hop, melodic and lyrical Rap, R&B and Afro Beat. At 13 years old, you recorded the song Hater Free” under the name of Zmny, with Brandy Norwood’s brother Ray J Norwood. How did that opportunity come about, and can you please introduce yourself to our readers that may not be familiar with Zmny, to give them a feel of Zmny, the recording artist.
Ozie Nzeribe: I’ve been infatuated with music my whole life. By the time I turned 12, I wanted to make my own music. So, my mom and I sought out an artist to collab with in the hopes of giving my first song a good push. The artist I decided on was Ray J.
My stage name Zmny, pronounced Z Money, was first coined by my dad when I was a kid, because I was obsessed with money and the Z being the second letter in my name. I currently go by my actual name, Ozie.
“Hater-Free” with R&B artist Ray J Norwood
GO BANG! MAGAZINE: Who are some of the recording artists that have influenced you?
Ozie Nzeribe: Artists that have influenced me, from the top of my head, out of order, I would have to say Post Malone, J. Cole, Chance The Rapper, Lord, Juice WRLD, Tyler, The Creator, Lewis Capaldi, Justin Bieber, Kyle, and many more.
“Function” – Zmny ft. Ana Lou
GO BANG! MAGAZINE: Who are some of the actors that have influenced you?
Ozie Nzeribe: Actors that have influenced me, from the top of my head, out of order, I would have to say Dylan O’Brien, Chadwick Boseman, Ryan Reynolds, Frankie Muniz, Tyler Posey, Denzel Washington, and many others.
GO BANG! MAGAZINE: You are also a humanitarian, a scholar, and a role model. Many entertainers do not like to hold the responsibility or title of being a role model. How do you feel about being characterized as a role model and what type of responsibility does that title place on you as an individual?
Ozie Nzeribe: I personally wouldn’t want to be characterized as a role model, because of the weight it bears and the responsibilities for countless others I would be agreeing to carry. I don’t aim to be a giant beacon for others to follow because no human is infallible. I only wish to become the best possible version of myself. I’m spreading joy and good vibes through my art and spreading love and kindness as a person, while still learning and growing. But, if my actions and what I stand for helps others along the way, I am happy to continue doing so.
GO BANG! MAGAZINE: If you had the opportunity to work with any actors/recording artists/producers in the world, who would it be and why?
Ozie Nzeribe: For actors, all out of order would be Reynolds, for his unfiltered raw comedy, Jenna Ortega, because of her versatility and dedication to her roles, and Tom Holland for his ability to portray American and for his work on “Spider Man.”
For music artists, Tyler, The Creator, because I’ve loved his style of Rap since middle school and his rapping voice. Lorde, because I’ve loved her music for the longest and has always put joy and good vibes in my house. Then Post Malone for his rocker/mellow musical style.
ZMNY X OLAMIDE- “STREET TREASURE” VIDEO
GO BANG! MAGAZINE: What’s next on your agenda and what should our readers be on the lookout for from you?
Ozie Nzeribe: Season 2 of “Swagger” on Apple TV+, airs this June, so watch out! I will be working on a lot more music this year. I’ll be adding in a couple more genres too. You may also see me in a film or two this year, and another show!
Last but not least, Kevin Feige, Sarah Finn, James Gunn, and all the other esteemed members of marvel, if you’re reading this, I think I would make a great addition to the family as Miles Morales (Spider-Man), just to put it out there. 😉
GO BANG! Magazine: Well Ozie, I want to thank you for granting me this interview. I also want to inform you that you have now been officially BANGED!!! GO BANG!
Clip from the Showtime hit series “Shameless”
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Pierre A. Evans is a freelance writer of Entertainment, Music, Art, Culture, Fashion and Current Events, and previously for SoulTrain.com, NDigo.com, ChicagoDefender.com, EmpireRadioMagazine.com, and UrbanMuseMag.com, an author, singer/songwriter, actor, model, poet, dancer, and DJ. He is also the Owner of Pinnacle Entertainment Productions and the Owner/Publisher of GO BANG! Magazine. Follow him on Facebook @Pierre Andre Evans, Twitter @Playerre, and on Instagram @Pierre_Andre_Evans.