Who Plays Abishola on ‘Bob (Hearts) Abishola’?

Abishola is about to be the name on the tip of everybody’s tongues when the CBS romantic comedy Bob (Hearts) Abishola premieres. Mike and Molly’s Billy Gardell plays a man who falls in love with the nurse who cared for him during his heart attack. But the woman behind Abishola might be a new face to many viewers. The actor who plays Abishola is named Folake Olowofoyeku.

(L-R): Billy Gardell as Bob and Folake Olowofoyeku as Abishola |: Best Possible Screen Grab/CBS

Olowofoyeku has been working since 2004 and has had visible roles in shows like Transparent, Westworld and Law & Order: SVU, but Abishola is definitely a big leading role. Olowofoyeku spoke with reporters after CBS’s Bob (Hearts) Abishola panel for the Television Critics Association. Bob (Hearts) Abishola) premieres Monday, September 23 at 8:30 p.m. on CBS.

Folake Olowofoyku came from Nigeria just like Abishola

Folake Olowofoyeku visited American on her 18th birthday in 2001. She decided to stay because she always wanted to be an actor. 

“I just never believed that it wasn’t possible no matter how much time passed, no matter the successes I was seeing with my friends back home in their paths,” Olowofoyeku said. “I just figured all I needed to do was be tenacious and patient, and my time would come and prepare for it I guess.”

Folake Olowofoyuke and Billy Gardell
Billy Gardell and Folake Olwofoyeku | Monty Brinton/CBS

That’s not to say the road to Bob (Hearts) Abishola was easy. There were times she thought about quitting.

“I considered it for sure but I just could never imagine myself doing anything else,” Olowofoyeku said. “I wanted to be a performer. I always thought about segueing out, finding a plan B, something to do to fill my time, but it never ever quite felt right and I relied on my intuition a lot.”

Folake Olowofyeku is also a musician 

Folake Olowofoyeku also wanted to be a musician. That went over about as well as acting with her parents. 

“Actually, I didn’t come here to act until after my parents were definitely against music,” Olowofoyeku said. “Then I somehow segued into theater and I loved it. I felt like it came naturally,”

Bob (Hearts) Abishola
(L-R): Folake Olowofoyeku as Abishola and Travis Wolfe, Jr. as Dele | Sonja Flemming/CBS

Now that she’s established in acting, Folake Olawafoyeku has time to develop her music too.

“I’m always working on music,” Olowofoyeku said. “I’m working with a producer in Nigeria now and we’re working on some new tracks. It’s Afrobeat, Afro rock. I play electric guitar so I infuse that with African pop rhythms and African drums.”

Folake Olowofoyeku was supposed to study economics

Folake Olowofoyeku’s parents reluctantly agreed to let her stay in America if she got an education. She enrolled in The City College of New York.

“So the deal was, for my parents, if I was going to remain in America, I was going to study economics and go to law school,” Olowofoyeku said. “So I started economics for like half a semester and then slowly segued into theater.”

Folake Olowofoyuke
Folake Olowofoyeku visits BuzzFeed’s “AM To DM” | Steven Ferdman/Getty Images

Even though she’s made it with Bob (Hearts) Abishola, Olowofoyeku is still curious about finances.

“Taxes still elude me,” Olowofoyeku said. “Every time with my accountant, I sit in his office for over an hour and I get him to explain everything to me because I’m really interested in that stuff. I like numbers. I loved economics. I just didn’t want to be in an office all the time. Perhaps I could have thought about interesting ways to use it but my heart was in the arts. I started out in economics.”

‘Bob (Hearts) Abishola’ is natural for Folake Olowofoyuke

So now Folake Olowofoyeku will be on TV every Monday for the rest of the year as Abishola. She said getting along with her costar was natural.

Bob (Hearts) Abishola
Billy Gardell as Bob and Folake Olowofoyeku as Abishola | Sonja Flemming

“We have a natural chemistry,” Olowofoyeku said. “Even just hanging out, it’s really easy. We had a test which is I think normal, my first test ever. Easiest thing I’ve ever done in my life. I passed the test. It’s a great group of people.”