Nondulo finally makes breakthrough

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LITTLE-KNOWN South Africa-based Zimbabwean actress Nondulo Ngwenya has landed a role in the comedy film Madlela after many years of labouring to penetrate the neighbouring country’s film industry.

MILTON SITHOLE
OWN CORRESPONDENT

The comedy is about the plight of majority of Zimbabweans living in South Africa, with some depicted as sex workers and others as armed robbers, contrary to popular belief that the grass is greener south of the Limpopo River.

The comedy was written by Zimbabwean writer Mothusi Bashimane, who plays the lead role in Madlela, produced by Plum Media and directed by Ally Ndlovu.

Madlela is currently available on DVD and producers are negotiating with several television stations to air the comedy.

Ngwenya told Southern Eye Lifestyle that her journey in the film industry was full of challenges and obstacles, and being a part of the comedy Madlela could provide the breakthrough that she has been seeking.

“Film is not an easy industry, but a dream never dies. It’s not a walk in the park; there are so many challenges. You just don’t wake up and find yourself with an acting role, but you must be tough and resilient,” Ngwenya said.

“I play the role of Mastanda (landlady), a woman who owns a flat pretending to be South African and dating a Nigerian man after  losing my Zimbabwean husband.”

Ngwenya was born and bred in Bulawayo’s Mpopoma high-density suburb and she said being born in the ghetto was no excuse for failure.

“Passion and zeal are what gives me the drive to pursue my dreams regardless of where I come from. I would like to advise those who want to venture into film to be educated, because education is the key; you need to have knowledge about something. When it comes to signing contracts, people must not just sign without reading and understanding, lest you sell yourself cheap due to desperation, especially us ladies,” she said.

She said negotiations are still underway with a few Zimbabwean retailers to stock the Madlela DVD comedy.

Ngwenya was part of a Zambian production film called Betrayal, although she played a small part as a cleaner.

She revealed that Anne Nhira, who played Vimbai in Studio 263, had joined them on a current project they were working on, although she declined to go into details saying it was a surprise for Zimbabwean film lovers.