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e.tv Pulls The Plug On Daily Drama ‘Isipho’!

The drama won’t be returning to the small screen in the new year.

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Isipho

In new South African TV News, e.tv has pulled the plug on its daily local drama series, Isipho.

The free to air channel has confirmed that the series, which hit screens Mondays to Thursday at 18:30, aired its final episode on the 19th of December 2019.

The decision to cancel the show was reached by both the channel and the production companies Herbivision Multimedia and The Ntintili Factory, QuenchSA has learned.

“The mutual decision to conclude production on the drama series is a strategic business one and was reached amicably by all parties involved”, e.tv expressed in a press statement.

Marlon Davids, Managing Director at e.tv, explained: “It is with sincere regret that we end a locally produced drama series; however, following lengthy discussions with our partners, the decision was made to end the series. e.tv continues to look forward to fulfilling its mandate of producing exceptional and relevant local content.”

RELATED: EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT ‘ISIPHO’!

Although the cancellation couldn’t have come as the most exciting of news, Isipho‘s Executive Producers Herbert Hadebe and Busisiwe Ntintili are thankful that the series had it’s day on primetime television

“This has been an amazing and breath-taking journey for us as independent local producers. The opportunity to tell stories that uplift South African audiences and create employment for South African families is our mission”, they said in a joint statement.

“This fantastic experience has given us, as young companies, great courage to continue with the vision of upskilling our people and contributing to the growth of our film and television industry”, they added, thanking e.tv and eyeing future opportunities.

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The series, which premiered on e.tv on July 1st, 2019, followed the story Moses Shezia former academic whose peaceful life takes an unexpected turn when he experiences a telling vision that reveals his daughter’s death.

Viewers can watch re-runs of Isipho on free-to-air satellite platform Openview’s eExtra channel 105, every Monday – Thursday at 10:25 AM until Sunday, 19 January 2020.

Discover New TV News and Exclusive Interviews and Album Reviews on QuenchSA.com!

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Sonia Mbele Opens Up about Co-Parenting after Explosive Divorce

Things have gotten much better.

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On Friday’s episode of ‘Cheeky Palate’, Sonia Mbele opened up about her highly publicized divorce and the subsequent Depression, as well as how she’s had to overcome the challenges that come with co-parenting two children with her former husband.

The 43-year-old actress and businesswoman appeared on the show alongside other high profile guests. Actors Joe Kazadi and Cedric Fourie, as well as Counselling Psychologist Buyisile Mncina were hosted for a gourmet dinner by show host Phat Joe.

The topic on the table was ‘co-parenting’, and Sonia had a lot to say about moving beyond the chaos that resulted from divorce from Leslie Sedibe. In 2014, the co-parents of two were splashed all over the papers over their separation. It was a tough time, revealed Sonia, as the media attempted to drill down to the bottom of the fallout.

“There’s always a stigma with a divorce… Somehow you are held accountable. I supposed people invest in you and champion for you. So there’s a lot of digging. It got muddled”, she shared.

The adversarial situation between the former got so bad that Sonia plunged into a depression. “I would sleep on a Monday and only leave the bed on Friday”, she revealed on the 1Magic talk show format, where guests lay it all on the table over a dinner prepared by chef Lentswe.

In 2018, Sonia revealed in an interview with Drum Magazine that she had even Googled how to commit suicide.

We are now also finding out that her on-screen chemistry with her love interest ‘Ngamla’ on Generations, where she portrayed the popular role of ‘Ntombi’, caused serious tension in the household.

Now though, there’s mutual respect and the co-parenting has improved a ton.

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Unathi Nkayi to Host Festive TV Special on 1Magic

The show premieres this Saturday!

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South African media personality Unathi Nkayi will be marking her return to television this coming Saturday. Festive Get-together, a three-part TV show piloted by the Idols SA judge, will be making its debut on 1Magic, channel 103.

The advertiser-funded program is a partnership between the channel and a brand of bev.

On December 5th at 15:00, viewers will be treated to chilled conversations between Unathi and a slew of high profile friends, couples and families who distill their journey to success. Throughout the specials, the guests will also be unpacking the challenges of connecting with their loved up in their busy lives.

For the next three weeks, renowned chef-restaurateur, Alessandro Khojane, will join Unathi in turning the homes of their guests into eateries, bringing the fine dining experience home and creating meaningful moments of connection in the process.

In each episode, viewers will get a front-row seat with some of SA’s top personalities as they talk about their aspirations, life milestones, and the meaning of being present for each other over festive fare in the company of bev.

The first episode features celebrity couple Zakes Bantwini and Nandi Madida, who step forward from their typically private lives for a candid chat during the intimate experience.

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Filming for ‘Reyka’, an M-Net & Fremantle Crime Drama, has Begun

The series is set to premiere in mid-2021.

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Thando Thabethe set to star on 'Reyka'. Photo: M-Net

Production has now commenced on M-Net and Fremantle’s eight-part contemporary crime drama Reyka.

The series, which stars amongst others South African-born actress Kim Engelbrecht (Isidingo, Dominion and The Flash) and Game of Thrones actor Iain Glen, is scheduled to premiere sometime in July 2021.

Kim Engelbrecht from M-Net’s Reyka.

Reyka tells the story of a flawed but brilliant criminal profiler, Reyka Gama (portrayed by Enge Engelbrecht). She’s haunted by her past while drilling down to the bottom of a string of brutal murders committed by a serial killer in the sugar fields of Kwa Zulu Natal.

Having been abducted as a child by a farmer named Speelman (Iain Glen), Reyka is traumatised by the experience but this also helps her enter the minds of Africa’s most notorious criminals and turn them inside out.

Iain Glen from M-Net’s Reyka. Photo: M-Net

Manipulative and charming, his hold on Reyka, 20 years later, forms part of the backbone of the story, as does Reyka’s relationship with her mother Elsa, played by Anna-Mart van der Merwe (Binnelanders, Kanarie and Poppie Nongena).

Reyka exposes the secrets and lies, truth and trust, damage, healing and forgiveness. With a dramatic backdrop of sugar cane fields, tropical beaches, stifling heat, dangerous wildlife, a criminal underworld, and shadowy politics – each place is connected by sugar but divided in so many other ways.

ALSO READ: ‘DURBAN GEN’ REACHES 2 MILLION VIEWERS!

The series also marks the second time M-Net commissions a high-quality production that goes beyond local borders. Trackers, which premiered on the channel in 2019 before being windowed down to Showmax, was co-produced with HBO’s sister channel Cinemax and ZDF.

Left to Right; Kim Engelbrecht and Iain Glen from M-Net’s Reyka. Photo: M-Net

Nkateko Mabaso, CEO of M-Net, said the collaboration with the UK’s Fremantle marks an opportunity for Africa to tell stories to the world. “This partnership with Fremantle is a brilliant way to showcase our prowess as DStv is Africa’s most-loved storyteller, and we particularly relish pairing our local talent with international stars”, he said.

Kim Englebrecht, Iain Glen and Anna-Mart van der Merwe are joined by a cast of some of South Africa’s best actors, including Hamilton Dhlamini, Kenneth Nkosi, Nokuthula Ledwaba, Desmond Dube, Gerald Stein, Ian Roberts, Fiona Ramsey, David Butler, and Jessica Hayes.  The series is directed by Zee Ntuli (Hard to Get) and Catharine Cooke (The Girl from St Agnes).

RELATED: HOW ‘GOMORA’ RECOVERED FROM SLUMP OF BORING STORYLINES

Julie Hodge, Editorial Director, Global Drama, Fremantle said “As production commences on our first ever South African drama, this is a proud moment for Fremantle and M-Net. The series has been in development for many years, and we hope it will be the first of many successful projects in the region. Reyka is a rich and compelling story and we couldn’t be happier to have Kim and Iain onboard to bring these complex characters to life – we are confident it will be one of our standout international dramas for 2021”.

The series is created and written by award-winning screenwriter Rohan Dickson (Husk and Welcome to Hawaii). Dickson has worked with South Africa’s major broadcasters and has been showrunner on highly successful dramas, including ScandalZone 14Jacob’s Cross, and High Rollers.  He was also the executive producer & showrunner of Isidingo, a long-running multi-award-winning drama series with a huge fan base across the whole of Africa.

Reyka is jointly produced by Serena Cullen for Serena Cullen Productions in the UK (Lady Chatterley’s LoverCold Feet) and Harriet Gavshon for Emmy nominated Quizzical Pictures in South Africa. Executive Producers are Serena Cullen, Harriet Gavshon and Rohan Dickson. Yolisa Phahle, Nkateko Mabaso, Allan Sperling, Jan du Plessis will executive produce for M-Net, and Julie Hodge for Fremantle. Reyka will be distributed globally by Fremantle.

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