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Sea­son 1 e.tv (*194) 21:30 Episode 1

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Masasa Mban­geni, Vatiswa Ndara and Khanya Mkangisa are bad-ass busi­ness­women!

Har­vest Sea­son 1 Mon­days (from 1 May) e.tv (*194) 21:30

Har­vest (2017- cur­rent) prom­ises high drama as three very dif­fer­ent women – ruth­less Celia (Masasa Mban­geni, Than­deka on Scan­dal!, 2005- cur­rent, un­til 2016 – see p22), her best friend Cle­men­tine (Vatiswa Ndara) and tro­phy-wife Tshep­iso (Khanya Mkangisa, Aphiwe in Isidingo, 1998- cur­rent – see p24) – step into their slain hus­bands’ shoes to take over their drug busi­ness. Now Masasa takes us in­side the un­der­world and mind of Celia.

THE BLACK WIDOW

Masasa re­veals that Celia’s wardrobe and per­for­mance draw on the idea of the black widow spi­der that eats her part­ner af­ter mat­ing. “I’ve been try­ing to mimic the move­ments of a spi­der,” re­veals the ac­tress. “Celia stands and watches you. A spi­der doesn’t just pounce on you. They are con­stantly alert and each move­ment is de­lib­er­ate. She only moves if she has a de­lib­er­ate place to go. Ev­ery­thing she does is cal­cu­lated. This idea is car­ried through in her dra­matic clothes. “She’s a dark char­ac­ter but very stylish with so­phis­ti­cated and fit­ted pieces,” says Masasa. “Af­ter her hus­band’s death, she tries to play with th­ese strong, beau­ti­ful colours to show a strong char­ac­ter.”

IN­SIDE THE SHELL

Like a spi­der’s “shell” that hides the vul­ner­a­bil­ity in­side, Celia’s clothes are meant to hide what her rise to the top has cost her. “When we’re in­tro­duced to Celia and her hus­band Mandla (Mu­todi Neshehe) they have per­fect lives. But there were sac­ri­fices that were largely made by Celia to get them where they are,” re­veals Masasa. “Celia has an in­nate en­tre­pre­neur­ial spirit. She was con­stantly hus­tling to put Mandla through busi­ness school and feed them and care for the baby (Celia’s now-18-year- old daugh­ter Ndoni, played by Anathi Sey­isi). That’s when she was in­tro­duced to this drug-mule busi­ness and it seemed to be a quicker way to get the life that they’d al­ways dreamt of.” And now you don’t cross this boss. “She has a rep­u­ta­tion. This is not the sort of woman you want to mess with. Celia isn’t above shoot­ing at you or grab­bing a cleaver and com­ing at you. She re­minds me of this one lady who used to own a soc­cer club…”

“SIS­TERS”

One per­son un­der­stands her though – Cle­men­tine, cher­ished wife of Mandla’s good-guy busi­ness part­ner Zimba (Sim­phiwe Mini). “They’re tied for­ever, like sis­ters, by this bond,” says Masasa. “They know what the other had to do to get this busi­ness, who they had to be­tray, who had to die, who had to end up in jail. They came into money to­gether.” But the strength of their bond is tested af­ter their hus­bands’ mur­der in episode 1. “Grief re­ally does a num­ber on all of us un­der nor­mal cir­cum­stances, but in this world, it’s like a pres­sure cooker, so grief is to the Nth de­gree,” ex­plains Masasa.

THE THIRD WHEEL

Mean­while, Tshep­iso has no share in this sis­terly bond. “The re­la­tion­ship for Cle­men­tine and Celia is com­pletely dif­fer­ent than that be­tween Celia and Tshep­iso as the con­texts are dif­fer­ent,” says Masasa. “Celia thinks she’s just this bimbo who mar­ried Celia’s friend Mx­olisi (Nat Ram­ab­u­lana) for his cash. If there wasn’t this money and they weren’t in this world of sell­ing cannabis, the women would never in­ter­act as they’re very, very dif­fer­ent peo­ple. Tshep­iso judges the book by its cover. She doesn’t know what we do in this busi­ness, so Celia is go­ing to keep her at arm’s length. But be­cause of the [mur­der] drama, she’s forced to let Tshep­iso in,” says Masasa. And that is just scratch­ing the sur­face. There’s much, much more at stake – es­pe­cially when it comes to Celia’s heart…

Masasa Mban­geni’s new look and new show are drama deluxe!

Masasa in her role as Scan­dal!’s Them­beka.

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