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‘I’m Glad Mfundi Didn’t Give Up’: Manaka Ranaka Is Happy Generations The Legacy Survived’.’

Award winning actor, Manaka Ranaka explains why Generation The Legacy had to survive the fallout with previous cast members. She also delves into what gets her ticking and why she does not have celebrity friends. Read more

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Manaka Ranaka has managed to whisk us away to different planes with her performances for the longest time. That type of ability is only reached once one ‘puts in the work and respects their craft’, the bubbly actress humbly remarks. In our conversation, she confesses her misgiving with regards to a celebrity’s supposed lifestyle and how she feels about her character on Generations The Legacy and her many kissing scenes. Here’s what she had to say.

QuenchSA: When the cameras have stop rolling and we aren’t watching, who is Manaka?

Manaka: She’s a daughter first of all and a sibling to to four other siblings. She’s a mother and a friend to a lot of guys. (Laughs) Less females in my life, the better!

QuenchSA: Can you recall the exact moment in your life when it clicked, ‘I want to be an actor’?

Manaka: I was 19. I’d been acting before but the acting bug hadn’t bit me until I was 19. I was discovered by some lady and she introduced me to my agent and I read to her and she said I read well. So at my first audition in 1999, right there it bit me and that’s when I knew that this is what I wanted to do because I had been job hunting and nothing was coming through and my CV wasn’t colourful enough.

QuenchSA: In the course of your career, you have displayed versatility of the highest order. How difficult is it to portray a character you have reservations about?

Manaka: For me it’s very difficult to portray any character. I choose my characters very wisely. For instance right now I’d never play a doctor because I refuse to play a doctor – It’s very challenging. You know when you open medication and there’s that leaflet inside, if I can read and pronounce those words without struggling then I’d play a doctor, right now I can’t. I refuse to make a fool of myself with a language I don’t understand.

QuenchSA: Do principles and ideals have a place in the performing arts industry when bills need to be paid?

Manaka: It depends on what your principles are to you as an individual because some people take it to heart and forget that there are bills to pay. But mine are simple, respect your craft and keep on harnessing it because its very easy to become stale in this industry.

QuenchSA: There was a point in South African Television when we all thought, ‘OK, we still have a long way to go. They keep recycling ideas’. How do you feel about the industry now?

Manaka: I feel like we are growing. I’m happy we’re no longer telling 1976 stories even though they still need to be told. Not every one went through apartheid. A majority of people alive today never lived through it and they know a very different type of racism. But I’m glad we’ve moved slightly from that. There’s no industry that is stuck in one place. You need to grow and live with the times. We need to give young producers a chance because they know a different story, a story of freedom. So it’s nice to see that they are telling stories of when we didn’t have freedom, how we got our freedom and now that we are free, we need to tell more stories.

QuenchSA: Generations has quite a strong history and tradition with black South Africans. Everybody knows you don’t knock at a black household door at 8pm… Do you feel the pressure to deliver?

Manaka: I always feel the pressure to deliver – irrespective of how big or how much of a beginner the show is. I wanted to keep this show alive because even though it’s called The Legacy right now, I’ve always seen it as a legacy in terms of soapies in this country. I feel like the show has to go on. I’m not saying I saved the show but I’m one of the people that helped save the show.

Generations-The-Legacy-Family2

I’m glad Mfundi (Mvundla) didn’t give up on the show because can you imagine the show that broke boundaries and set records in the country, and next thing because of 16 people the show must now die. For me that was unfair. Let’s sort out our issues in a certain manner and I’m not saying the 16 actor have nothing to cry about, it was a very serious issue but a 21 year old show cannot go down because of 16 unhappy people. I refuse… There’s more than just the actors on the show you know.

QuenchSA: As Lucy we have witnessed you in multiple kissing and intimate scenes. How is that like?

Manaka: It’s quite nerve-wrecking, (giggles) it’s something I’ve done it before but it’s always nerve wrecking.

QuenchSA: Have you eyed any actor for a good smooch?

Manaka: Oh hell NO! You know why? Once you have those eyes it gets taken off set. It means you personally have feelings for that person not the character. Ke sharp kadinto tseo.

QuenchSA: Can you draw any similarities between you and your character Lucy?

Manaka: I’m very street wise. I guess I share that with Lucy. For the first time I get to show this side of myself. She is very gangster. She may have chilled with iy’gebengu (thugs) and I’ve never seen her with any female unless it’s a former inmate. I chill with guys and I speak Tsotsi Taal too.

QuenchSA: At any time when you are livid, do you swear at your cast members?

Manaka: I try not to, but sometimes I do. I take it to a certain level until they say you can’t say this then I won’t say it. But I do make sure my creative tap is not shut down by directors, I do suggest a couple of things and if they don’t want to I respect that.

QuenchSA: Being part of your sister’s reality show… Does it ever get bothersome that you constantly have cameras that try to document your life both at home and at work?

Manaka: Eish, ja… I’m not used to that lifestyle. But I did enjoy Dineo’s Diary because that was my sister’s show and I was there purely out of support. Imagine my sister had a show and I wasn’t part of it, the amount of flack I would  have received!

QuenchSA: What’s your release/escape?

Manaka: My kids. The minute I walk home and see my kids, that’s normality for me. Just me seeing my family the way I am supposed to see them and not the way they are supposed to see me. I don’t have celebrity friends for one reason, I don’t want to be on that constant high. That life requires make-up, heels and weaves. When I’m with my guys I feel normal, grounded.

QuenchSA: Which genre do you prefer, drama or comedy?

Manaka: I love comedy, with comedy you have the license to make people laugh. Licence to drama is very depressing. It’s hard to get out of a dramatic character. For example Portia from Gaz’ Lam was so depressing. At one point I would lock myself in the room with the curtains closed. When I do comedy as soon as the director says cut I move on with my life.

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Black Panther: Wakanda Forever to land on Disney+ in February

Welcome to Wakanda!

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Black Panther Wakanda Forever

Fans of the Marvel Cinematic Universe are in for a treat. Disney+ has announced that 1 February marks the arrival of Marvel Studios’ “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.” The blockbuster will be joining 16 other on the streaming platform.

ABOUT THE MOVIE

Queen Ramonda (Angela Bassett), Shuri (Letitia Wright), M’Baku (Winston Duke), Okoye (Danai Gurira) and the Dora Milaje (including Florence Kasumba) fight to protect their nation from intervening world powers in the wake of King T’Challa’s death.

As the Wakandans strive to embrace their next chapter, the heroes must band together with the help of War Dog Nakia (Lupita Nyong’o) and Everett Ross (Martin Freeman) and forge a new path for the kingdom of Wakanda. Introducing Tenoch Huerta Mejía as Namor, ruler of a hidden undersea nation, the film also stars Dominique Thorne, Michaela Coel, Mabel Cadena and Alex Livinalli.

“Black Panther: Wakanda Forever,” directed by Ryan Coogler and produced by Kevin Feige and Nate Moore, is now playing in theaters. 

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Music

The Shocking Fallout of Black Motion

Tensions have reportedly escalated.

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They are one of South Africa’s most revered music duos.

Their discography packs both blockbuster club bangers and lush delights for lovers of House with a transcendental African sonic flair. And the explosive fallout of Black Motion, which has been splashed across the internet long before reaching the courts, has shocked many.

Loved for their electrifying live performances and awe-inspiring chemistry, Mörda and Smol have always seemed like musical soulmates. But that relationship seems to have reached a bitter end.

In 2022, rumours of their reported split triggered a frenzy on the internet. Following the uproar, the group’s members Bongani Mohosana, who now goes as Mörda, and Smol (real name Roy Thabo Mabogwane), jointly calmed fears that they had fallen out.

It had been said the break would be temporary, as Mörda moved to focus on the release of his solo studio album.

Far from it, it now seems. The parties have escalated things to court.

According to reports, Black Motions have confirmed that they had pressed charges against Mörda for alleged housebreaking and theft.

A court order by the High Court in Gauteng posted on social media has ordered Morda to “restore possession of a recording studio apparatus” to the group by 13 January, at 5pm. 

Black Motion shared snaps of the alleged damage caused by Morda – a broken door and stolen equipment.

 

It looks like we won’t be getting a new Black Motion album with Mörda anytime soon.

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Reality Shows

Inside the Big Brother Titans Premiere!

South Africa and Nigeria unite under Biggie’s roof.

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Sunday, 15 February 2023, marks the roaring arrival of BBTitans.

WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW.

The highly anticipated social experiment brings under Biggie’s roof housemates from both South Africa and Nigeria. And for 72 days, we will be splashed with the finest in South African and Nigerian swag, banter, romance and all the trappings of a fun-filled, dramatic and – we’d hope – an entertaining show.

A first of its kind, the social experiment assembles the most colourful personalities from the two nations to outwit, outplay and outsmart each other in a bid to get their hands on a massive bag, life-changing bag!

In addition to a number of lofty prizes that will likely be on the line throughout the season, the winner of the show will also be walking away, a whopping grand prize of US $100 000 (over R1,7 million) is up for grabs for the one who trounces his Housemates to charm audiences across the continent.

That’s not all; the amount of social capital, celebrity and opportunities for lucrative brand deals after the show, all form part of the career-launching lift-off that comes with being on the popular franchise.

Both Big Brother Mzansi host Lawrence Maleka and Big Brother Naija’s Ebuka Obi-Uchendu will co-host this debut season.

Fans of Big Brother Mzansi and Big Brother Naija in the diaspora are not left out as Showmax will stream the show in the United Kingdom, New Zealand, and about 50 other countries.

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