popular
Frennie Shivambu/Getty Images

This Award-Winning Actress is Calling Out South Africa's Exploitative Film Industry

Vatiswa Ndara has made a move that may end her career to expose the exploitation in the country's film industry.

Vatiswa Ndara is a South African actress with whom most South Africans are undoubtedly familiar. She has starred in local television productions including the beloved soap opera Generations as well as other popular shows such as Tsha Tsha, Gaz'lam, Home Affairs and Society. She's also racked up a number of awards during her career including the Golden Horn Award for Best Supporting Actress in a TV Drama Series. However, the accomplished actress recently penned a heartfelt letter to the country's Arts and Culture Minister, Nathi Mthethwa, where she talks about her exploitation as an actress and that of others in the film industry. The letter has caused an uproar on social media.


Ndara, who is currently one of the lead roles in the successful local drama series iGazi, has opened up about the less-than-glamorous aspects of her job. She speaks about being paid far below what would be expected for one of the country's top-tier actresses. She also shares how iGazi's production house, Ferguson Films, has reportedly tied her down to unfair working conditions without the appropriate compensation. Read her letter here.

Many South Africans have expressed their shock and dismay that seemingly successful actors and actresses are being grossly exploited behind the scenes. Fellow actresses Florence Masebe and Rami Chuene have shown Ndara their support following her letter, with Chuene having shared a Twitter thread detailing her many challenges as an actress but how the #ShowMustGoOn. In light of Ndara's revelations, many have also questioned how other far less accomplished performers are then being treated.

While some have put Ferguson Films (which produces not only iGazi but also The Queen, The Throne and The Imposter) on blast, others have defended the production house and accused Ndara of being "ungrateful" at a time where many South Africans are unemployed and would benefit greatly from the little she feels she's being paid.

The conversation has once again come back to the issue of protecting the rights of performers. Since last year, numerous South African performers have been campaigning to have the Performers Protection Amendment Bill adopted by Parliament. South African performers have talked about how most of them don't have the rights to their own images and their distribution as well as how they don't receive any royalties from production houses or broadcasters for the repeat airing of their shows.

Shooting of the third season of iGazi has stopped with Connie and Shona Ferguson of Ferguson Films having claimed to be in the process of taking legal action against Ndara.

popular

A-Reece Releases His Second Song of 2020 ‘Selfish [EXP 2]’

Listen to A-Reece's new song 'Selfish [EXP 2].'

A-Reece has released another song via SoundCloud. "Selfish" is a minimalist song with its beat consisting mostly of gnarled guitar strings and a pulsating bongo drum.

Keep reading...
popular

Aewon Wolf Preaches Subversion and Freethinking in His New Album ‘The Return’

Aewon Wolf releases 'The Return' after a two-year hiatus.

Aewon Wolf has always preferred to sprinkle some pop in his hip-hop, as can be heard in his previous releases. His latest project, The Return, his first in two years, boasts some pop-leaning songs like "Thando Lwami," "Something Special," "Cool Kids" and others are all glazed in the customary top 40 chart sheen through the use of glossy synths and pads alongside other contraptions.

Keep reading...
popular
Still from YouTube.

Yemi Alade Enlists Djimon Hounsou for New Music Video 'Remind You'

The veteran Beninese actor stars in the sultry music for Yemi Alade's latest single.

Yemi Alade shares her latest music video for her single "Remind You," and it stars none other than celebrated Hollywood actor Djimon Hounsou.

"Remind You" is a sultry R&B track from the singer's latest album, 2019's Woman of Steel. The vibrant music video, directed by Ovie Etseyatse, sees the singer gallivanting in an empty mansion in various elegant gowns. Honsou graces the screen throughout the video as well, but the two don't meet until the very end, when things take a funny and unexpected turn.

Keep reading...
Interview
Photo courtesy of Afro Nation.

Interview: Afro Nation Festival's Smade On Unifying Africans Across the Continent & Diaspora

As the festival prepares to make its Puerto Rico debut this spring, we sat down with Afro Nation co-founder Adesegun Adeosun aka Smade to talk about how it all started and what the future holds.

Within minutes of speaking with Adesegun Adeosun, it's apparent that Afro Nation is much more than an urban music festival.

The Afro Nation co-founder, better known as Smade, talks passionately about connecting Africans across the globe. In less than a year since its debut edition, Afro Nation has successfully done this and gone on to establish itself as the largest festival celebrating African culture on the continent and in the diaspora.

This year, Afro Nation will touch down in Puerto Rico for the first time over spring break—from the 18th to the 21st of March—on the beach of Balneario de Carolina. Headliners will include Burna Boy, Chronixx, Davido, 2Baba, Naira Marley and many more.

As the festival prepares to make its Puerto Rico debut this spring, we sat down with Smade to talk about Afro Nation, how it all started and what the future holds.

This interview has been edited for length and clarity.

Keep reading...

get okayafrica in your inbox

news.

popular.