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THE LAST time we spoke to Munya Chidzonga, (pictured) he was on his way to Zimbabwe after a controversial loss to Nigeria’s Uti Nwachukwu in the 2010 edition of the Big Brother Africa.
While Chidzonga was seemingly the favourite on the show, the results proved otherwise. However, he went home, managed to establish a production company and has since produced two movies.
Having starred in a few acting roles in South Africa before his departure, Chidzonga came to mind when the casting directors of Mzansi Love Stories were looking to cast a specific role.
“I got a call through my agent, asking me if I could pull off an English accent. I told them that since I am an actor I could pull off any accent that was required of me,” said Chidzonga.
He sent in an audition tape which lead to him getting the part in e.tv’s new series.
Mzansi Love Stories pushes the envelope in the way that stories are told on TV. The series features a number of characters at any given time and in each episode the storyline explores a selected character’s story arc. Chidzonga’s episode airs next Tuesday.
“I play Makhaya Madando, a Zulu guy who grew up in the UK, but who has now returned to South Africa. He is a social outcast and no one get his personality or jokes.
“He works for an advertising company that starts struggling when his ideas appear to be ‘alien’ for their Third World clients.
“Essentially, he is struggling to fit in on both the personal and professional fronts,” said Chidzonga.
In an effort to rectify this, Makhaya looks for help and finds it in the form of beautiful Londiwe Mtshali (played by Xoli Zondi), who schools him on the South African way of life.
“When Mak decides to learn Zulu, Londiwe decides to step in and become his tutor. Before they know it, the two fall in love.
“Mak also has a desire to connect with his roots and his father – a thing that will be featured in this story,” said Chidzonga.
For someone who had not worked with the likes of Zondi and Khanyi Mbau before, Chidzonga could not conceal his elation when describing the experience of working with his co-stars.
“It has been a very humbling experience and I can’t believe I am working with these wonderful people. I know I am supposed to be professional, but the reality is that we see some of these people on TV only from afar so it is really incredible that I am now working with them on this amazing story. It is also awesome that they are really calm and collected, making me feel welcome all the time.”
As far as his character goes, Chidzonga said being a foreign national, he could relate to Mak’s dilemma.
“He is trying to fit in and I can relate to his situation as I am Zimbabwean and working with a predominantly South African cast. Also, I have lived abroad so I know what that can do to your culture and I use those experiences to portray Mak’s detachment from his heritage.”
• Mzansi Love Stories airs on Tuesday at 8.30pm on e.tv.