Nolwazi Shange on playing the family matriarch in ‘Outlaws’

Nolwazi Shange in 'Outlaws'. Picture: Supplied

Nolwazi Shange in 'Outlaws'. Picture: Supplied

Published Sep 1, 2023


Ahead of Saturday’s private media screening of Showmax’s new show, ‘Outlaws’, the streamer is ramping up promotional efforts around its newest highly promoted series.

Premiering next Wednesday, September 6, on Showmax, ‘Outlaws’ co-stars Nolwazi Shange as Nandi, the strong-willed matriarch of the Zulu, cattle-farming Biyela clan, who are at war with the Basotho, cattle-raiding Ts'eoles.

In a press release sent to IOL, Shange spoke on the experience of working on the show and what we can expect. She shared the journey starting from her initial reaction when she first got the script.

“My initial reaction was, ‘Sign me up,’” she said.

“I was immediately excited by the idea of being involved in action sequences and challenging my body in that way. It’s a first for me in the years I’ve been working.

“Listen, I’m not a small girl, and I found it quite cool that I could express and use my body in that way. Oh, what a thrill.”

The KZN-born actress initially shot to fame as Precious in ‘A Place Called Home’, which earned her a SAFTA as Best Actress in a TV Drama.

Recently, she played Sibongile, the villain we loved to hate in ‘Mzali Wam’, and had viewers on the edge of their seats as Mbali Khubeka on ‘Scandal!

This new role, she says, was more demanding than you thought it would be. Despite this, it’s an experience she found fulfilling. “There were a good few days of shooting this epic sequence and my body was challenged. A challenge I would gladly leap into again, given the chance.”

She also shared that there many parts of Nandi that she sees in yourself. “Nandi is headstrong and determined. She doesn’t shy away from challenges but goes full steam ahead, with a very clear strategy in mind.

“She’s also just as nurturing and present. Maybe I’m over-hyping myself here, but I’d like to believe I possess these qualities. They are definitely qualities I resonate with.”

She concluded by sharing why she felt audiences should watch this series. “It’s a beautiful story with a great cast. It’s relatable, in that it explores how our differences are our strengths, and also how alike we are in our differences, how we can find common ground and maybe love in our differences.

“I really want audiences to be immersed in the story and just sit back and marvel at this beautifully told story.”