Johannesburg - There is a new bitch in town, as Nomzamo Mbatha takes on the role of Khwezi – Mnqobi’s third wife-in-waiting in polygamy-filled drama series Umlilo.
Umlilo premiered Monday night on e.tv at 21:00 and with the gripping story of lies, deceit and office romance, Monday nights are not going to be the same again.
Mbatha’s star is on the rise this year, thanks to her return to Isibaya, her new show on SABC1, Holiday Swop and her appearance as Mnqobi Simelane’s secret lover who attends Mnqobi’s birthday party under false pretences. She has manipulated circumstances to attend the party and subtly demands to be introduced as the next in line at the party. The question is: does she get her way with Mnqobi?
Umlilo promises a lot of drama and cliffhangers with its polygamous-oriented story line. City Press took time out to speak to the rising actor and presenter on the eve of her new role, before she worms her way into the Simelane family as a possible wife number three to the logistics and transport owner.
Tell us about Khwezi the wife-in-waiting.
She is calculating, manipulative and absolutely intelligent … A woman with a past that drives her present. She has gone through life alone full of hatred. However there is a part of her that is very sweet and genuine.
What drives Khwezi?
Justice. Or whatever idea she may have of what justice is.
Does she really believe in polygamy or is she playing along to get in on the Simelane household?
For her I think it’s not a matter of believing in polygamy or not, it’s a matter of getting into the Simelane household and causing havoc without getting her hands dirty.
What do you like about Khwezi and what do you not like about her?
I love how strong, resilient and smart she is. I think it’s always an honour for any female actress to play a strong woman because there aren’t many roles that portray us in that light. It would be an injustice if I found anything I don’t like about her. An actor can never be surprised by their character nor can they judge or condemn their character.
Do you share any values with her?
Absolutely! I like the fact that she carries the memories of her family with her wherever she goes. She’s also loyal, grounded, and resilient and embodies an unnerving strength.
What can people expect from Khwezi as the season plays out?
People can expect to see the unravelling of the story behind the malice. They should also expect a lot of cliffhangers as she takes you on a journey of retribution and menacing justice.
How did you prepare for the role?
I watched season one of the drama series Revenge, read Danielle Steele’s Malice and watched one of my favourite films, Colombiana for the third time!
The reason why I chose those particular materials to base my research on was because they portrayed strong, resilient, calculative and absolutely menacing women who had justifications for what could be considered their “evil” actions. These really helped in underplaying everything.
Catch Umlilo on e.tv on Mondays from 21:00 - 22:00.
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