popular
Image courtesy of Netflix.

Production for 'Queen Sono,' Netflix's First African Original Series, Is Underway

South Africa's own Pearl Thusi will be joined by a master roster of a cast for this spy thriller.

At the end of 2018, it was revealed that South Africa's very own Pearl Thusi would star in the first Netflix original series coming from the continent. In an update, Netflix has announced in a press release that production for Queen Sono has begun by Johannesburg-based production company Diprente.


The six-part series is an action-packed spy thriller—where we follow Thusi playing the title role—working for an undercover South African agency devoted to protecting African people.

Image courtesy of Netflix.

Image courtesy of Netflix.

Image courtesy of Netflix.


Kagiso Lediga is the showrunner and director of the series, alongside director Tebogo Malope. The two will direct three episodes each, with the team led by executive producer Tamsin Andersson.

The all-local cast for Queen Sono that's due to join Thusi will be Vuyo Dabula playing Shandu, an ex-spy who has taken a different path. Sechaba Morojele plays the role of Dr Sid, director of the SOG, with Chi Mhende, Loyiso Madinga and Rob Van Vuuren—the agents on his team. Kate Liquorish will play Ekaterina, the heiress of an oligarch family with ulterior motives. Khathu Ramabulana plays Queen's childhood friend, William, now in a relationship with Enhle Maphumulo's character Nova. Abigail Kubekha plays Mazet, Queen's beloved Gogo (grandmother), who has always supported Queen—no matter the trouble she gets herself into.

Connie Chiume, Otto Nobela and James Ngcobo round out this master roster of a cast.

Queen Sono is due to be released on Netflix globally in 2020.

popular
(Screenshot from video)

Patoranking Drops an Amazing Video For ‘Open Fire’

The Nigerian star treats the world to the reality-bending visuals for the upbeat track.

The Nigerian fusion artist has hit us yet again with arrestingly stunning visuals to accompany his emphatic, bombastic and infectious music. Last week, the talented Patoranking gifted the world with the video for the track "Open Fire" featuring Busiswa and we somehow didn't see it until today. Believe us, it is a classic case of "better late than never."

Keep reading... Show less
popular
Photo courtesy of Cimarrón Productions.

Cimarrón Is the Women-Led Film Production Company Empowering Afro-Colombians to Tell Their Own Stories

The "first Afro-Colombian film production company," is teaching filmmaking in Colombia's black communities in order to combat the lack of representation.

When filmmaker, activist, and cultural agent Heny Cuesta first started her career in Colombia, she noticed a severe lack of black creators in the industry. Cuesta, an Afro-Colombian originally from Cali, was the only Black woman in a room full of mestizo directors at a panel discussion at the International Film Festival in Cartagena de Indias (FICCI) in 2013.

"None of the filmmakers were black, but they were talking about ethnic content despite the fact that they didn't know the territory," says Cuesta. That scene shocked her, but it reflected the low number of movies directed by black directors in Colombia. In 2018, Colombia's film industry premiered 37 feature films and only one of them –Candelaria– was directed by a black director. It received many international awards.

The lack of blackness in Colombia's film industry goes far beyond studios, film festivals and production companies. Afro-Colombians make up almost 20 percent of the population but historically have had few opportunities to access education. Most black Colombians, who come from cities and towns along the Pacific and the Caribbean coasts, have been neglected and isolated due to a lack of infrastructure, as well as a lack of education and job opportunities.

Keep reading... Show less
Video

Video: Mr Eazi On How He's Helping Young African Artists Grow

In 'Moments With: Mr Eazi,' the buzzing Nigerian star tells us about Banku music, being a serial entrepreneur, and how he's been pushing young African artists through his emPawa initiative.

Mr Eazi stopped by our offices in New York City during a packed round of promo around his new emPawa platform.

The Nigerian star sat down with OkayAfrica and spoke in-depth about his early days, how his friends all pooled money to help him get started, how his famous 'hat' look came about, the blend of Ghanaian & Nigerian sounds that make up Banku music and more recent things like collaboration with J Balvin and Bad Bunny.

Watch our Moments With video with Mr Eazi below.

Keep reading... Show less
popular
Asa 'Lucid' cover.

The 14 Songs You Need to Hear This Week

Featuring Asa, Patoranking x Busiswa, $pacely, Vagabon, Shane Eagle and more.

Every week, we highlight the cream of the crop in music through our Best Music of the Week column.

Here's our round up of the best tracks and music videos that came across our desks, which you can also check out in our Songs You Need to Hear This Week playlists on Spotify and Apple Music.

Follow our SONGS YOU NEED TO HEAR THIS WEEK playlist on Spotify here and Apple Music here.

Check out all of OkayAfrica's new playlists on Spotify and Apple Music.

Keep reading... Show less

get okayafrica in your inbox

news.

popular.