Local actor and one of Signed International TV Show’s first acting talent exports, Tlholego Colten Chaba recently repeated history as the third Motswana to appear in South Africa Soapie, Generations; The Legacy following the footsteps of Connie Fergurson and Lerato Motshwarakgole. Chaba told Time Out that even though it is such great news to land a role in Generations, it was not a walk in the park as it took him 17 long years to penetrate the market.
“It is my first job since I got here (South Africa) and I have learned and got to appreciate the environment from inside. It’s not easy to penetrate the market but if you know what you want only patience and trust in God can take you through. And my advice to aspiring actors is that nothing comes easy it has been 17 long years for me to get where I am now,” he said.
He plays a sangoma and gangster and says it is a role that he enjoys playing. “The character is too far from who I am personally but its one of those characters that I have played before. The role has brought me out of my shell and I am learning everyday from this character,” Chaba added.
However, lawyers representing the 16 actors who were axed from SABC1 soap opera Generations recently filed a court application to halt the new version of the show, Generations The Legacy. The group wants the newly launched version of the soapie to be taken off screens, alleging that the SABC reneged on a contract it signed after the actors were axed during a pay dispute last year. They claim the SABC and Vundla’s production house are contravening existing contractual agreements with them by airing the soapie. Actors who have joined the new version of the soapie have been labelled as traitors and in his defense Chaba told Time Out that he was still new in the soapie and doesn’t have enough information to comment on the issue.
The new soapie is in a shocking ratings tailspin losing millions of viewers. According to the consolidated ratings information this is how Generations The Legacy did in its first week of broadcast(1 December 2014):
Monday: 7.5 million
Tuesday: 6.5 million
Wednesday: 6.1 million
Thursday: 5.4 million
Friday: 4.1 million
In an interview with a South African media company Channel24, media strategist at Carat SA, Cheryl Dube said,”Perhaps the drop in viewership does not show a lack of interest but rather the sense of loyalty that people had towards the old version of the show. After 20 years of watching a story, building relationships with the characters and engaging every day to all of a sudden having the soapie end abruptly with so many cliffhangers and unanswered questions about the characters that South Africa loved so much – that’s just reckless, especially for such a popular show. The new story line is completely new, so building that relationship again will be difficult for some but you do have those die-hard supporters who still love the Generations brand.”