It has been confirmed by e.tv’s Scandal and SABC1’s Generations that seasoned actor Luthuli Dlamini is taking up residence in the latter soap. He is shooting his scenes at the SABC building, but Debashine Thangevelo stole him away to find out more about his new role as Scott Nomvete…
THE irony of Luthuli Dlamini moving to Generations while Sello Maake ka Ncube, who became a household name as Archie Moroka in the SABC1 soap, has taken the NFH throne in e.tv’s Scandal, is not lost on us.
While it has been a brilliantly dramatic twist having Dlamini reprise his former role and take on Daniel’s character, by revealing a few skeletons in his closet, the Zimbabwean-born actor found himself in a bit of a dilemma when Generations came knocking on his door, so to speak.
He says: “Bottom line – they made me an offer I couldn’t refuse. That is what it comes down to. It was difficult for me. I enjoyed my time at Scandal. It was nice to come back to family and friends for many years.”
Thursday was Dlamini’s second day on set.
While not unfamiliar with the SABC’s production corridors – he had a short stint as S’thembiso Shezi in SABC3’s Isidingo – he nervously laughs: “It’s interesting and good. I’m still new and it is all exciting being in a whole new environment. I am like a schoolboy at a new school trying to make friends and going: ‘Are they going to like me or not?’ “
While he is settling in at the SABC, he cherishes the time he spent on Scandal.
“You know, it was nice to get into the vibe and be a part of the future of the storyline. It was difficult to leave, but it was the right decision for me.
“What was nice about (Scandal) was I got to work with old friends Sandy Mokwena (Bra Eddie), Clint Brink (Tino) and Nthati Moshesh (Mo). And I hadn’t worked with Sello before. So it was nice to get in there and mix it up a bit. The character and storyline was nicely layered – Stan came back as a hobo, then we see his growth as he gets back on his feet. And finally he starts a new life…”
He laughs: “At least they haven’t decapitated me in my exit. But it would be nice to see how they bring Stan down. To me, that’s a nice in and a gentle out.”
In Generations he plays a businessman called Scott Nomvete. I joke about the surname reminding me of Pamela Nomvete, who played the malicious Ntsiki in the soap.
Dlamini chuckles: “Funnily enough, I was with her recently. She is doing fantastically well in the UK. Coincidentally, she is working with an old English friend of mine.”
So what is the deal with his character? He shares: “He is one of those guys that you love to hate – but you understand.”
“Yes, he is a bit naughty,” he continues. “I would say he is kind of a cross between Kenny Kunene, Tokyo Sexwale and Prince Charles.”
Before I could choke on my laughter at his character interpretation, he interjects: “Scott has this Kenny-like flamboyance, Tokyo’s business acumen – he is very money-driven to maintain his lifestyle. And he has this debonair (aura) of royalty.
“He wears a three-piece suit, these brogues, a handkerchief in the pocket and a pocket watch.
“He understands that he has to use his education to expand his business and is ruthless when it comes to money.”
While we can’t ignore the elephant in the room situation – knowing that Dlamini has been brought in just as Nambitha Mpulwana has exited – it stands to reason that there is purpose to his introduction and it has a lot to do with Sibusiso Dlomo (Menzi Ngubane).
The actor hints that there has been a beef in the past with Dlomo and his character. But right now Nomvete is the biggest ally he could have. What Dlomo doesn’t realise, not right away that is, is that Nomvete doesn’t want a bit – he wants all of Ezweni. Dlamini takes joy in disclosing that his character does have the upper hand in a way.
“Scott is the bad guy with finesse. Sibusiso comes from the university of life, but Scott comes from the university and uses the smarts in his criminal life.”
Dangerously close to gloating, Dlamini is loving that he could well be the new alpha villain in town.
Then again, he has earned his gloating privileges.
• Dlamini will debut on Generations, which airs on SABC1 at 8pm on weekdays, somewhere around July or August.