The local stars shining on the global stage
With so many South Africans making it big overseas we look at some of the stars flying our flag high on the global stage
‘I don’t think you can create anything interesting from a comfort zone. You have to work from a place of fear and failure’
‘Take chances and follow your vision – don’t bend or change what you do’
SHE’S undoubtedly South Africa’s hottest export right now – and is getting ready to blow Hollywood away. Nomzamo Mbatha, best known for starring in Mzansi Magic series Isibaya, bagged herself the role of a lifetime next to the likes of legends Eddie Murphy and Wesley Snipes. The 29-year-old actress, who recently relocated to Los Angeles, is set to star in Coming 2 America, the follow up to 1988 cult comedy classic
Coming to America.
“I’m just honoured to be part of this incredible and huge classic of a film,” the beauty from KwaZulu-Natal said on Instagram. “It’s going to be a fantastic couple of months in Atlanta [in the USA] telling this story and being surrounded by the most incredible collective of actors and living legends!”
She can say that again. Along with Eddie and Wesley, the cast includes James Earl Jones, Arsenio Hall, Tracy Morgan, Leslie Jones and Garcelle Beauvais.
It’s due for release next year and Eddie reprises his role as Prince Akeem, who’ll return to the US to search for his longlost son.
Nomzamo – who became a goodwill ambassador for the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) earlier this year – is the latest in a long line of South Africans flying the flag high overseas.
We look at our proudly SA exports.
CHARLIZE THERON (44)
NET WORTH $130 MILLION (ABOUT R2 BILLION)
CLAIM TO FAME The Benoni-born star put SA on the Hollywood map when she bagged an Oscar in 2004 for Monster.
Since then she’s starred in many notable flicks, picked up plenty of awards and founded her own production company, Denver and Delilah Productions.
This year she made it onto Forbes’ list
of highest-paid actresses, claiming ninth spot with earnings of $23m (R353m).
Not too shabby for someone who arrived in Hollywood on a one-way ticket paid for by her mother!
Charlize next appears in the film Bombshell, a real-life account of the toppling of Fox News CEO Roger Ailes after over 20 women accused him of sexual harassment.
BLACK COFFEE (43)
NET WORTH $2 MILLION (R31M)
CLAIM TO FAME One of Mzansi’s most sought-after House DJs and producers is gaining fans all over the world.
Black Coffee – real name Nkosinathi Maphumulo – is known for dropping beats in many of the world’s party capitals, from Ibiza to Miami.
Over the years he’s won a bunch of accolades, among them the best deep House DJ trophy at the 2017 DJ Awards in Ibiza.
Apple Music recently announced he’s one of Africa’s top 10 most-streamed artists of the past four years and his collab with David Guetta, Drive, was the top song in sub-Saharan Africa.
In 2010 he attempted to set a world record when he DJed 60 hours non-stop at Maponya Mall in Jozi. Sadly, as there was no Guinness World Records official at the event it didn’t make it into the books.
TREVOR NOAH (35)
NET WORTH $28M (ABOUT R430M)
CLAIM TO FAME Keeping us – and the rest of the world – in stitches.
The Soweto-born funnyman, who recently nabbed fourth spot on Forbes’ list of highest-paid comedians, has gone from strength to strength since becoming the host of Comedy Central’s The Daily Show in 2015.
Trevor released a best-selling memoir, Born a Crime, has a special on Netflix called Son of Patricia, completed a world stand-up tour and has won numerous awards.
Little wonder he’s a regular at many A-list parties these days, where he’s been seen rubbing shoulders with the likes of Rihanna, Lenny Kravitz and Lupita Nyong’o. But he still keeps in touch with his pals back home and was recently seen holidaying with TV darling Anele Mdoda in Japan.
JOHN KANI (76)
NET WORTH $6M (ABOUT R92M)
CLAIM TO FAME The renowned actor, director and playwright has flown the flag proudly over many years and now stars in the latest celebrated remake of The Lion King alongside Donald Glover and Beyoncé.
He was raised in the Eastern Cape and has been active in the movie industry since 1965.
His credits include Sarafina!, Captain America: Civil War and superhero smash hit Black Panther where he played royal T’Chaka.
His plays and written works have featured on Broadway in New York and London’s West End. Earlier this year he took his latest two-man play, Kunene and the King, to the UK.
He’s a recipient of many awards – he won a prestigious Tony Award in 1975 – and in 2014 the largest venue at the Market Theatre complex in Newtown, Joburg, was renamed The John Kani Theatre in his honour.
LESLEY-ANN BRANDT (37)
NET WORTH: $2 MILLION (R31M)
CLAIM TO FAME She plays the demon Maze in the hit US series Lucifer.
The ex-Capetonian landed the role in 2016 and in June this year it was announced the series had been renewed for its fifth and final season on Netflix.
Taking to Instagram, the Los Angeles-based star thanked the show’s writers, cast and Warner Bros before promising fans she’d do her best work in the last season.
She’s not disappearing though. She will appear in the upcoming comedy flick Killing Winston Jones starring Richard Dreyfuss and Danny Glover.
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