7de Laan dumped by the Saftas

2012-02-15 16:32
Thinus Ferreira
Cape Town – SABC2's 7de Laan  – South Africa's most popular TV soap as voted by viewers the last three years in a row – has unceremoniously been dumped by the National Film and Video Foundation (NFVF) and its upcoming South African Film and Television Awards (Saftas).

The long-running show has been removed from the Best Soap category.

While all the other local South African soaps – Generations (SABC1), Muvhango (SABC2), Isidingo (SABC3), The Wild (M-Net), Rhythm City (e.tv) and Scandal! – remain, 7de Laan is to be deleted from the category where the winner is chosen based on viewers' votes.

All the soaps will appear in the category except for the Danie Odendaal production when the full categories and nominees list is announced by the Saftas on Thursday.

Viewers wanting to vote for 7de Laan won't have the option after it's been ostracised from the category by organisers despite winning the popular vote three years in a row.

While 7de Laan won in 2009, 2010 and again in 2011, 7de Laan boycotted the Saftas last year after a massive mess and voting fiasco with the wrong SMS number for the soap.

No entries, not eligible

Asked why the NFVF and Saftas are suddenly dropping 7de Laan as a contender in the Best Soap category, the NFVF says, "7de Laan didn't submit any entries for the Saftas this year, that is why they are not eligible to be in the Best Soapie category."

Responding to the shocking development after being informed that fans won't be able to vote for the soap, 7de Laan says the show "did not submit entries for the Saftas this year because we have reservations about the selection process.

"We were unaware of the fact that we wouldn't be eligible for the Most Popular Soap category if we didn't submit entries in other categories," says Colin Howard, 7de Laan's line producer. "As a South African soap, we thought we would be entered into that category automatically."

SABC2, stunned when told the same news, have not yet responded with an official reaction to its soap being dropped from the Saftas category.

SABC1's Generations previously also had a major falling-out with the awards ceremony purported to praise the best of South African television and film but which often receives criticism regarding the judging process as well as dubious production values.

Drama behind the scenes

Behind-the-scenes drama already erupted this year when the 6th Saftas, originally scheduled for March 10 and 11, had to be moved a day earlier for the respective non-fiction and fiction award evenings.

SABC3, which will on Thursday officially be announced as the broadcasting partner (after the event wasn't shown on television in 2011), will have to move its Saftas broadcast to March 10 to keep it a live broadcast, or now go with a recorded broadcast if kept on March 11 where it was originally scheduled.

SABC3 has not yet commented or responded to a media enquiry on what the broadcaster will do.

This year's sixth Saftas drew a record number of 233 entries but the awards show is often derided by TV and film critics who are shut out from actually judging the award categories.

Instead Saftas winners are decided upon by 104 so-called "judges" who work within the industry and who are previous category winners.


  • Hendrik - 2012-02-15 16:44

    Toughies for SAFTAS, the country KNOWS that 7de Laan is the best 4x4 by far. It does not need to be voted for at an awards ceremony which is at the best of times a bit of a shambles. Might even work in the favour of 7de Laan to NOT be associated with a fiasco like saftas.

      Jonathan - 2012-02-16 08:23

      7de Laan is rubbish!!! Terrible acting and boring, predictable story line. Isidingo is by far the best SA soapie

  • acsteyn - 2012-02-15 16:47

    Here is good material for at least 42 more episodes. What do you think?

  • Syries Tebu Maleho - 2012-02-15 16:49

    aag shame :)

  • Max - 2012-02-15 17:09

    No loss to anyone. The Wild is brilliant and by far the best South African production ever as far as soapies goes.

  • atomasicchio - 2012-02-15 17:11

    Sounds like sour grapes to me

  • phathuchicos - 2012-02-15 17:26

    not fair...i love hillside more than my hometown.

  • Jonathan - 2012-02-15 17:27

    I honestly don't understand the public's fascination with 7de Laan anyway

  • Clifford - 2012-02-15 17:42

    Same as most award organisations. A lot of vary opinionated people with no opinions at all.....

  • Chris van Vuuren - 2012-02-15 17:42

    Sounds like a case of cutting off your own nose to spite your face for safta. They will be losing a lot of advertising revenue as a result of a massive drop in people watching the event.

  • William - 2012-02-15 17:59

    If 7de laan must go THEN REPLACE IT WITH MALEMA'S LIFE STORY. WE ARE ALL DYING TO SEE IT DAY AFTER DAY, LIKE WE ARE DOING NOW!!!! (please vote for this readers)

  • Jo - 2012-02-15 18:14

    Every body knows 7 de laan is the best of the best. So we should take this note with a pinch of salt. Viewers always decide.

  • Irene - 2012-02-15 18:14

    Never watched a single episode. Refuse to watch any TV channel that is an ANC mouthpiece.

      Moss - 2012-02-15 21:56

      Pity you cant buy brains, I would have helped you purchase one long ago dear!!

      Fritz - 2012-02-16 00:15

      One of the most retarded comments I've seen in a long time...

      elewies - 2012-02-16 09:02

      @Fritz- Irene isn't completely loony. She's got a point- The SABC is basically a propaganda machine. But I don't think 7de Laan is...

  • steve.dupreez - 2012-02-15 19:00

    The BEE rating is to low due to the unfair distribution of whites and coloureds. They want more blacks in leadership positions and whites must be the cleaning staff. So Hilda, get the duster and go clean Aggie's house.

  • Eeny Meeny Miney Mo - 2012-02-15 20:42

    So a 7de laan gets pulled and it's suddenly a BEE issue and all other soap operas are an ANC mouthpiece. Some of you make ashamed to be white. So pathetic.

  • Douglas - 2012-02-15 21:13

    makes the awards a pointless exercise,doesnt it? there is obviously some professional jealosy and overinflated egos involved

  • brionyl.french - 2012-02-16 06:18

    so then dont vote and see how the response affects the night... the only one good on there is ISIDINGO

  • Sakkie - 2012-02-16 07:43

    It is almost as when the All Blacks won their first World Cup and people said, 'You cannot call yourself a World Champion if the Springboks did not compete. SAFTAS, what are they anyway?

  • Robsschele - 2012-02-16 08:18

    Apparently SAFTAS wanted them out last year already by supplying the wrong SMS number. I didn't even knew about this Saftas thing. I never watch any of these award things. Never.

  • Henrietta - 2012-02-16 08:21

    Hendrik. The most popular TV soap is the one that gets the highest AR ratings. And that is Generations by far. Getting you to vote online is a money making exercise. You are free to love your soap but please don't get sucked in by cheap sensationalist journalism.

  • Henrietta - 2012-02-16 08:23

    Henrik. The most popular TV soap is the one that gets the highest AR ratings and that is Generations. Getting viewers to vote for their favorite soap is a moneymaking exercise and unfortunately not everyone in SA has the money to waste on this call. You are welcome and free to love your soap but don't get sucked in by sensationalist journalism. We should support the SAFTAS. It is awards that determine the standard in an industry. Klaar gepraat.

  • Monique - 2012-02-16 08:47

    Hallo??? It not about who likes this soapieor not! Its about treating all equally ! Its a soapie just like the others so it should be entered. Why the hell not??? Are they threatened by a very basic soapy. Being fair and treating things equally really seems to be a problem in SA.

  • una.rhoode - 2012-02-16 15:01

    i am happy coz clearly they can do something to 7de laans females hairdo, Hilda makes it so obvious she is on tv that her suprise looks are so fake, they need upgrade, its becoming norm/boring

  • Deta Maverick Rossiter - 2012-02-16 17:00

    The viewers vote for their favourite. The vote is not for hair and make up. Acting etc. And why must the show submit an entry? Is it not a south african program? SAFTA awards.... The SA means South African. Real people need to judge. The viewers.

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