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Julian CleophasDecember 1, 20155min40

Jongo, TV Series, Gareth Crocker, African Shows, Motion Story,

“Jongo” , Africa’s first real Superhero TV series produced by South African based studio Motion  Story, seems to be the African game changer in terms of proudly African produced content.

It was announced at DISCOP Africa 2015, that “Jongo” had been picked up for distribution by Discover Digital alongside Dutch based distributor FCCE, Ebony Life TV and South African television network, as partners for the series to be released in 2016.

“Jongo”, shot in Johannesburg will flight a first season of 8 episodes. The African series will explore the story of a young man who acquires super powers,  after an alien crystal left to him by his murdered mine worker father , is found in a cave at the cradle of humankind. Eli tries to deal with the death of his father and sets out to find the men responsible, whilst having to manage the powers of the crystal. Little does he know about the men he is hunting, who just like him have crystals of their own but require Eli’s stone to fulfill an ancient and devastating prophecy, which will threaten the lives of millions.

Jongo, African Shows, Zoom-in, Africa's 1st film blog, Superhero, Motion Story, Pacou Mutomba“It’s an original and uniquely African concept that has excellent production values. We wanted to showcase the beauty and dynamism of the continent and of South Africa in particular. So many films and TV shows focus on the problems Africans face. “Jongo” will emphasize all that is positive about this great continent of ours…” says “Jongo” writer and director Gareth Crocker in an interview with Screen Africa.

The African superhero series is co-directed by Fred Wolmarans and Gareth Crocker, executive produced by Chris Lawrence and produced by Phillip Wolmarans. The role of “Eli King” is played by hip hop dancer Pacou Mutombo, his best friend “Kay” is played by Katlego Baaitse and his girlfriend “Maya” played by Pauline Zwane. The role of “Noah” is played by Luthuli Dlamini, the head of an agency that protects the planet from alien activity.

In the beginning of the series, Eli lives the life of an ordinary young man living a humble life in urban Johannesburg. He hates his day job as a courier delivery guy but by night he works a second job as a dance teacher. Check out the trailer below…

Behind the scenes with co-director of Jongo, Gareth Crocker providing insight into the worlds first African Superhero TV series.


Julian CleophasJune 18, 20158min20

As a South African television viewer, we are constantly flooded by shows that are produced either locally or abroad, but how many of these shows are from the greater Africa and actually African? To be honest, I never knew where to start and found myself completely dumbstruck with the task at hand. So I did a Google search and discovered an article on Cable News Network’s (CNN) African Voices showcasing the Top 8 African shows on the continent. I honestly feel that I merely scraped the surface, so if there is any show we should know about to add to this list, please share with us.  To not hold you in suspense any longer take a look at the top 8 African TV or web series listed below, according to CNN.

I of Africa

” I of Africa” by Nigerian born fashion model Aina Fadina, comes a web series celebrating all things African from a global perspective. Aina has already produced two seasons of one-on-one interviews, showing entrepreneurial creatives and is currently in the process of securing partnerships to start shooting season three.

The Pearl of Africa

The Pearl Of Africa by Swedish filmmaker Jonny von Wallström, follows an emotional journey of Cleopatra Kambugu a 27 year old transgender girl in a country where being homosexual has been outlawed by the state. The seven part series shot in Kampala raised important questions with regard to identity, gender and the attitude people have towards homosexuals. Born as a male, the Pearl Of Africa  shows how she openly changes into a woman.

An African City

The new “An African City” web series created by Nicole Amarteifio, focuses on five young glamorous women returning to Accra, Ghana after living years abroad. The shows a mix of adventure, careers and love, along with having to adjust to life in Accra, in stilettos and beautiful clothes.  After a very successful first season, fans have described it as the African version of “Sex and the City”. The producers hope to start shooting season 2 of “An African City” in spring 2015, subject to financing.

The Samaritans

The Samaritans written by Kenyan producer Hussein Kurji, is a hilarious mockumentary based on the development sector. The show follows the daily activities at local field office of fabricated NGO “Aid for Aid”. Kenyan producer Kurji began developing the series thanks to a successful Kickstarter campaign, along with additional financing from an NGO. Two episodes are currently available to rent online, as he focuses on developing the first season for international distribution.

The White Folks

‘The White Folks’ written and directed by Mia Cilliers and Lisa Lane Drennan, is a mock-reality web series set in South Africa. It follows the lives of two families from Cape Town, who think their suburban lives are very tough. The shows been associated with being South Africa’s version of “Modern Family”, based on parodies of suburban behaviour and the critical exploration of white culture in the suburbs. Currently two seasons have been released on YouTube, with the team in the process of planning season three.

African Time

African Time by writer Mawuena Akyea, is a web series displaying what it is like for Africans who have migrated to other regions. The idea stemmed when he wanted to explore the experiences of first and second generation Africans living abroad. The show is a mix of stereotypes, disciplines, parenting and more, with a sense of humour nicely intertwined to keep you entertained.

The Nairobians

The Nairobians by Kenyan Director David Tosh Gitonga, known commonly for the award winning “Nairobian Half Life”, the first Kenyan film to be considered for an Academy Award. His new show focuses on stories of struggle and dreams within an African context. Gitonga’s been working with Tanzanian writer, film producer and director Abdu Simba to lock down a strong storyline. The team are in final stages of development before production on season on starts.


Written by Jason Corder and directed by Claire Ash Meadow, “STAY” is a Kenyan TV series that touches on the cultural differences surrounding interracial dating. It revolves around the life of Nubia (played by Mkamzee Mwatela) who, against all odds, must make her relationship work with Shane (played by Jason Corder). But will it? After a successful first season the show returns for season two, check out the official Stay Season 2 trailer



Julian CleophasFebruary 3, 20154min10

Simba crash on the William Nicol and the N1 Jhb. Image by Yusuf Abramjee via Pig SpotterIt came with great shock Saturday morning when reports surfaced that Simba Mhere (26) had passed away in a tragic car accident. Simba had been travelling with his friend and father, when this horrific ordeal had occurred. According to a statement from his PR Company, ‘Styling Concepts’, Simba was on route to OR Tambo International Airport to board a flight headed for Cape Town to attend the J&B Met.

Johannesburg Metro Police Spokesperson Edna Mamonyane said Monday morning that “the driver of the VW Polo crossed over the middle island and then hit Simba’s car from the side”.Simba had been driving when suddenly another car smashed into his vehicle.

The impact had been so severe that Simba and friend never survived, while his father luckily escaped unharmed. The Polo driver was however not tested for alcohol but will be charged with two counts of culpable homicide along with a count of reckless and negligent driving.

Simba and familySimba Mhere became a household name after capturing the hearts of South Africa in the Top Billing Presenter Search 2010 competition. He went on to win the competition and became the youngest member of the successful television show “Top Billing” on SABC 3. Simba originally from Zimbabwe, moved to Johannesburg at the age of one with his parents who were missionaries. He attended Randpark High School and after matriculating, studied a B.Comm accounting at the University Of Johannesburg.

As Top Billing had initially pushed out its produced episode, Tswelopele Productions are now working on a special episode to pay tribute to their colleague and friend, Simba. A memorial service will be held Thursday 05 February at Rhema Bible Church in Randburg 3pm to 5pm. The Funeral service will also be held at Rhema Bible Church on Saturday 7 February at 9am and burial will be at West Park Cemetry in Roosevelt Park.

We would like to extend our condolences to the Mhere family during this difficult time. The industry mourns a great loss…

images by Gallo Images, You magazine/Fani Mahuntsi (family) and Yusuf Abramjee via Pig Spotter


Julian CleophasJanuary 19, 20155min1

Big Brother Mzansi, Big Brother, South AfricaBig Brother Mzansi produced by EndemolSA  returns for another installment, after the success of  2014’s reality TV show! For those who watched” spaza shop” owner Mandla Hlatshwayo, walk away with the fame and glory as Big Brother Mzansi winner, the hunt is now on for new housemates to fight it out for the coveted prize of being Big Brother Mzansi 2 winner! Think you’ve got what it takes? If you are bold enough, sly enough, smart and crazy enough to take on the challenge, a spot could be yours in the Big Brother’s Mzansi house! So what does the winner get apart from bragging rights?Well, it won’t be less than R 1 million that’s for sure, but according to Big Brother Mzansi it could be as high as R 2 million for the winner! So what’s the criteria to be eligible to audition? Well, in order to audition you must be;

1) A citizen/legal resident of South Africa

2) 21 years of age or older (as of 01 January 2015)

If you said yes to the above mentioned, then you are one step closer to being one of the Big Brother Mzansi 2 Housemates! This year auditions will take place simultaneously in Durban, Cape Town and Johannesburg on Saturday, 31 January and Sunday, 1 February 2015.

Audition Details


Venue: BAT Centre , 45 Maritime Place

Time: Registration starts at 08h00 and closes at 15h00 on both audition days

Cape Town

Venue: Cape Town Lodge, 101 Buitengracht Street

Time:  Registration starts at 08h00 and closes at 15h00 on both audition days


Venue: The Pyramid Venue, Eloff Street

Time: Registration starts at 08h00 and closes at 15h00 on both audition days

NB!Auditions are on a first come/first serve basis and you must bring a valid South African ID document with you.If you are registered by 15h00 you will be auditioned.

This year you can either audition as an individual, or with a partner,so if you think you and your best friend will wow the Big Brother Mzansi selection team, then make sure you are both at the auditions! Big Brother Mzansi 2 starts on Sunday, 29 March 2015 on Mzansi Magic (DStv channel 161) running for 56 days until the Finale in May. The show will be filmed at Red Pepper Studios in Johannesburg.