Bongile Mantsai will be making his first appearance on Scandal! today. Picture: Supplied

SAFTA winner Bongile Mantsai will make his first appearance on etv’s drama series Scandal! today. The 33-year-old, who is best known for his role in the South African film Inxeba, takes on the role of Mthunzi Mayisa, a villain who is driven by revenge, but comes across as charming.

“He is that character that people hate, but love at the same time. It has been extremely interesting to play because nothing is as it seems with him.

“Mthunzi is a strategist, and he is very smart in the way he actions his thoughts. Viewers are going to love him,” Mantsai says about his character.

Mantsai researched people who are in the business sector and looked at society as a whole in preparation for the role.

“I looked at people who are in business and how they conduct themselves. I focused on their backgrounds and learnt how to portray that image for my character,” Mantsai said.

Fans may also remember Mantsai for his recent role in Nkululeko, where he played the role of an infamous gangster, Ta Poncho, who was released from prison and soon started plotting to regain his power on the streets.

In Scandal!, Mantsai is charismatic and charming, but also a chameleon who quickly changes colours depending on what he needs from people.

“This character is very different to the bad guy characters I’ve played before. There is something about the psychology of this character that’s got me so interested in playing him.

“In my other roles, when you took one look at me, you would know I was the bad guy. With Mthunzi, no one knows what to expect from him. He has everyone on their toes all the time. He is not your typical bad guy and there is a lot to come that people will not expect,” Mantsai said.

Mthunzi’s background is that he is born out of wedlock. He is Dambisa Maduna’s son, who is a domestic worker for the Langa family.

“Mthunzi’s mother’s family rejected him and shamed his mother. He practically grew up without his mother, who left him to be raised by his grandmother. Now grown up, he enters the Scandal! world as an infiltrator,” he said.

“What’s great about this storyline is that no one will be able to pre-empt it.

“The script writers are amazing at what they do, and I am so grateful and excited to be a part of this new adventure,” he said.

Catch Bongile Mantsai on Scandal! on e.tv at 7.30pm.

A_Birjalal