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First Look at New Showmax Thriller with Pallance Dladla & Lea Vivier

It’s the story of a family – and a town – with dark secrets

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There’s already a couple of original South African series lined-up to premiere on Showmax in 2021. And the filming of ‘Dam’, a small-town psychological thriller shot in the Eastern Cape, has just wrapped.

Lea Vivier stars in ‘Dam’, set to premiere on Showmax in 2021.

THE PLOT 

‘Silwerskerm’ Best Actress winner Lea Vivier (WonderlusFynskrif) stars as Yola Fischer, who returns from Chile to the Eastern Cape to bury her father, only to be tormented by spirits in the farmhouse she has inherited. But with her mother institutionalised, and her own meds running out, Yola has to wonder if the spirits are real or just in her head?

Two-time South African Film and Television Award (SAFTA) winner Pallance Dladla (ShadowIsibaya) co-stars as Themba, her love interest, a biker on the run.

Natasha Loring (who’s voiced game characters in both the Star Wars and Game of Thrones franchises, and starred in international series like Beaver Falls) plays Yola’s sister, Sienna; SAFTA winner Antoinette Louw (An Act of DefianceDie Laaste Tango) plays her aunt Dora; and Fleur du Cap winner Faniswa Yisa (Blood Psalms, Knuckle City and Skin) is Lindiwe; with aKing frontman Laudo Liebenberg (Black SailsDie Byl) and Gerald Steyn (Meisies Wat Fluit, Fiela Se Kind) as brothers Rudy and Max Reese.

“It’s the story of a family – and a town – with dark secrets, and about how what you push down will eventually rise up,” says Alex Yazbek (The WildUnmarried, Isibaya), a four-time SAFTA winner who is writing and directing the eight-part series.

Neil Sandilands returned from Hollywood for the series – his first South African role since 2013’s Die Ballade Van Robbie De Wee. Since then, Sandilands has appeared in hit shows like The FlashThe 100The Americans and Hap and Leonard, as well as films like Paul Greengrass’s News of the World, opposite Tom Hanks.

Dam’s all-star cast also includes Jennifer Steyn (Goodbye BafanaAbo Mzala, Master Harold and the Boys) as Yola’s mother, Yvette, and theatre legend Andrew Buckland (Catching Feelings) as her father, Jacob.

Siv Ngesi (Blood PsalmsStill Breathing, Knuckle City), Thembisa Mdoda-Nxumalo (Baby MamasUnmarriedOur Perfect Wedding), Tarryn Wyngaard (Noem My SkollieRaised by WolvesDwaalster) and Andre Odendaal (SwartwaterDwaalster). There’s also Marvin Lee Beukes (Die Byl), David James (District 9, Isidingo), and Francis Chouler, who is making his local TV series debut after more than 20 international roles in the likes of Eye in the Sky and Prisoner 760.

Picture Tree (Vehicle 19) are producing the series with Tom Marais (Hunter Killer, iNumber Number) as DOP; Sue Steele (MaterialVehicle 19) as production designer, creating things like frog-covered floors; award-winning model maker Roger Titley creating barbel fish-headed monsters; and SAFTA winner Smartie Olifant (IntersexionsThe Wound) overseeing makeup, including a trypophobia-inducing skin disorder.

“It’s safe to say you’ve never seen anything like Dam on South African TV,” says Candice Fanguiero, Showmax’s head of content.

Dam premieres on Showmax in February 2021.

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Drama Series

Stranger Things S4 in the Works – What we Know So Far

Production resumed in January 2021.

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The fact that my ‘Stranger Things’ sweater from the third season of the show’s promotional merch is starting to look worn out is a tell tale sign we’ve waited long enough for our fave Hawkins, Indiana boys to come back.

Still, it’s hard to believe a whole two years has gone by since season 3 of the popular teen drama series premiered on Netflix. The coronavirus has really disrupted the flow of things, and production delays have meant some of our favourite shows will take longer than usual to film.

Fans of ‘Stranger Things’ can, however, rest assured that the show is definitely on its way back with a fourth season. And while the wait has already been long enough, it’s unlikely that the cast will come back as middle aged parents because decades have gone by.

In fact, the new season is currently being filmed as we speak. According to i-d, the cast resumed production as of January this year. The news were confirmed by Caleb McLaughlin, who stars on the show as Lucas Sinclair.

They are shooting the show under some strict coronavirus protocols, however, which has changed how things are typically done. Amongst many of these, revealed McLaughlin in an interview with Flaunt Magazine, is how the limit on gatherings means episodes are being filmed in an irregular sequence.

“If there’s a scene with extras, we can’t film with everyone right now”, he said. “We have to only film scenes where there are fewer people, so we have to start from a later episode. We won’t start at episode one, we will start at episode five.”

That said, there are no dates confirmed around the return of the show.

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Drama Series

New SA Crime Drama Series ‘I Am All Girls’ Coming to Netflix in May

A relentless detective finds common ground with a killer.

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May 14th 2021 will mark the premiere of I Am All Girls, a brand South African streaming series that focuses on the dark world of a global child sex trafficking syndicate operating in the country.

Produced by Nthibah Pictures, the series will star amongst others Hlubi Mboya, who’s work is most noted for her performances on Isidingo and Rhythm City. She will be playing the role of a certain ‘Ntombizonke’, a troubled but powerful detective with a dark and ugly secret.

There’s also Erica Wessels (Warrior and Waterfront, Vloekstte) who appears on the show as Ntombizonke’s confidant and emotionally-troubled colleague, ‘Jodie Synman. Other main cast members include Brandon Daniels, Mothusi Magano, Masasa Mbangeni and Nomvelo Makhanya

The Donovan Marsh directed story chronicles the mission of the two detectives as they embark on an all-consuming journey to find justice and bring down a global human trafficking ring. Simon Swart, Wayne Fitzjohn, Jozua Mahlerbe, Lucia Meyer-Marais are all producers on the crime thriller.

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Why Rége-Jean Page Won’t be Back for Season 2 of ‘Bridgerton’

What’s the tea?

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News that Bridgerton‘s breakout star won’t be returning for the second season sent fans of the period series into a frenzy over the weekend. It comes after Netflix and Shondaland both announced the news on Friday, revealing that Simon Basset, the Duke of Hastings, will not be part of the show’s highly anticipated season.

But while the news riled up the show’s fans, many who instantly swore they wouldn’t be tuning in for the second season, it was never going to be any other way. Conspiracies of a rift between the British-Zimbabwean actor and producers may have been fun to dive into, but nothing could be further from the truth.

Sometimes, things must be done by the book. In this case, things are flowing in the direction of the Julia Quinn novels on which the series is based. The character’s storyline is concluded in the first book “The Duke and I.”

That’s why despite everyone (myself included) freaking out, the end of Page’s journey came as no surprise to him and all involved. Talking to Variety, the 31 year actor explained how he’d be contracted to do the show for one season as per the book.

“It’s a one-season arc. It’s going to have a beginning, middle, end – give us a year,” Page said to the publication. “[I thought] ‘That’s interesting,’ because then it felt like a limited series. I get to come in, I get to contribute my bit and then the Bridgerton family rolls on.”

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