The Final Cut Judges. Picture:Tristan McClaren

The nationwide search to find two new faces to fill the shoes of two new characters on prominent SABC dramas is on. 

The competition is fierce, however, and the contestants will have to dig deep to make their dreams a reality. 

Each week contestants will be put through acting challenges that will test their craft. With the aim of searching for new raw talent, each hopeful will need to bring their A game as they take part in challenges that include learning a script in 15 minutes, pulling off a love scene, character improvisation, character make-overs and more. 

The Final Cut is hosted by actor and presenter Lawrence Maleka while resident judges include Safta award winning actress and casting director Karin van der Laag, actress and film director Mmabatho Montsho and film-maker and director Thabang Moleya.  

Van Der Laag, who is currently the casting director for Skeem Saam and and actress on 7de Laan, said she was honoured to be a judge on the show and was passionate about finding raw talent in South Africa. 

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“I think talent scouting is a pretty under-used service and that is what I hope to offer the industry. It is very exciting to be part of two people’s journeys to winning the competition and hopefully success as actors. 

“It was sometimes really emotional to let go of amazing contestants, but all the judges encouraged the contestants to keep pursuing their dreams and keep honing their acting craft,” she said.


Laag said the painful part about being an actor is the rejection they receive: “An actor needs to have a tremendous amount of chutzpah, a real truthful sense of self and an ability to pick themselves up off the floor after many and varied disappointments.” 

As the competition heats up, the judges make the gruelling decision of cutting one actress and one actor in each challenge episode. 

“I am so proud of the way they threw themselves into every challenge… They were not afraid to make fools of themselves – that is the only way we learn anything – and they had a healthy sense of humour about their failures and challenges,” said Laag. 

While Laag believes that The Final Cut is worth its weight in gold because it exposes actors who would otherwise struggle to get noticed, she advised the ultimate winners to take care emotionally. 

“This industry is challenging and difficult. It is important for them not to make rash decisions and not to let the craziness go to their heads. I hope they will keep a healthy sense of who they are… and that they will remain humble,” she said.

* The Final Cut airs on Mondays at 7.30pm on SABC 3.