EXCLUSIVE: Kgomotso Christopher talks about 'Scandal!' exit
Kgomotso Christopher makes her exit from e.tv’s flagship soap, "Scandal!"
While departures are par for the course on a TV show, they are not easily welcomed by viewers. More so, when it is a character they have come to love.
Christopher joined the soap four years ago when she was cast Yvonne Thebe, Naledi’s (played by Dineo Moeketsi) estranged mum.
Last year, Christopher also scooped the Best Actress in a TV Soap at the South African Film and Television Awards (Saftas). This was her first win and third nomination.
Prior to joining "Scandal!", she played Katlego Sibeko in "Isidingo".
On shifting from one memorable character to another, Christopher said: “Our task as professional and trained actors is to always strive for diversity and character differentiation as we portray various characters. I, therefore, had no doubt that I would shake off the character, in fact, that was my mission and task when I took on the role of Yvonne…to showcase a different side of my craft and range. However, the challenge is always convincing the viewer.
“The character I left behind on 'Isidingo' was also well-loved. In fact, most people believed it would be impossible for me to create another well-loved character and were very surprised that I had the courage to walk away from Katlego Sibeko. Four years down the line, I have no doubt that viewers are happy that I took a leap of faith and joined Scandal! Without the courage to move on, I and the audiences would have been robbed of going on a journey with Yvonne /Yv/ Maleeto.”
On fans now referring to her as Yv, she said: “I thought it was hilarious. For years, I was Katlego or Mrs Sibeko, at some point fans wanted to let me know that they could refer to me as both…Yv has completely deleted Katlego from the street lingo. Yv indeed became a whole entire and new character that fans fell in love with. It affirms my work as an actor in so many ways.”
As for her top three story-lines, Christopher revealed: “There were so many amazing and storylines that always challenged me as an actor. I loved the rivalry storyline with Boniswa as "sister-wives". The fake gambling room story where Yv stole Neo's clients and someone was murdered for to teach Yv a lesson. And, of course, the current storyline of discovering Mme Maleeto by delving into her past and eventually connecting with Tibi.”
Fans will still get to see her on-screen for the next two months.
e.tv head of Local Productions Ziyanda Mngomezulu said: “YV arrived as a representation of the South African girl next door who had to make means to maintain her glamorous lifestyle. The actress needed to do little to portray the characteristics of the character. Yv’s journey allowed viewers to see themselves get into complex life situations vicariously, and in sometimes quirky ways, her role allowed them to breathe a sigh of relief for having dodged yet another bullet that may expose the less than perfect image they work so hard to maintain.
“Kgomotso managed to portray a multi-layered and complex reality to viewers, whom many identify with.”
When asked about any plans to lessen the blow for fans by adding one or more characters, she responded: “The show is continuously searching for opportunities to showcase new talent and will introduce different characters in due course.”
While fans are reeling from the news of Christopher’s departure, her open-ended exit from the soap could see the actress return at some point.
The actress added: “I love 'Scandal!' and I know I will always have a home there. It means anything is possible. For now, however, the show has been very supportive and understanding of my decision and my need to step away in 2020.”