'The Black Door': Director Mandla N & Legendary Actress Linda Sebenzo Open Up About New Saucy TV Drama

'The Black Door': Director Mandla N & Legendary Actress Linda Sebenzo Open Up About New Saucy TV Drama

The Black Door is a groundbreaking new local TV drama set in a world of druglords, tender fraud and the ruthless Mam'Rebs, who runs it all. A first look, viewers find a simple toilet paper factory, but these walls carry a sinister secret - the brothel that lurks behind.

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The show follows Khaya Sokhulu (played by local heartthrob, Zamani Mbatha) whose dreams of owning a transport company are turned upside down when his brother is mysteriously murdered.

The Black Door, eTV, Mandla N, Linda Sebenzo, TV Show, telenovela, drama
Director Mandla N and actress Linda Sebenzo talk all things #etvBlackDoor. It's the latest production by Black Brain Pictures. Images: @rich_dux/Twitter, @Bongani_MKJ/Twitter
Source: Twitter

Uncovering his late brother's twisted secrets, Khaya must take on a world of sex, drugs and tender fraud if he's ever to repay his brother's debt to The Black Door brothel owner, Mam'Rebs.

#eTVTheBlackDoor: Exclusive launch

Briefly News attended an exclusive screening of the brand new eTV drama and got the chance to speak with the show's Creative Director, Mandla N as well as The Black Door's incredible female lead, legendary actress Linda Sebenzo.

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Members of the media were invited on a one-of-a-kind tour of the production's amazing film lot. Hidden on the outskirts of Johannesburg, the whimsical set opened up to reveal a real-life mini-township complete with a functioning car wash, shisanyama, and even a beauty salon for guests to explore.

Guests took selfies everywhere they could and were undeniably captivated by the unique opportunity to fully immerse themselves in the lives of characters like Mam Rebs and Khaya.

Creative Director Mandla N

Taking us on the tour, Creative Director Mandla N, who also directed hit shows like Mzansi Magic's Lockdown and DiepCity, got very candid about how gender roles are portrayed on the show. He jokingly shared that he might "get a lot of hate" from male viewers and a very conservative South African public:

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"The show has got males who are prostitutes... who are gigolos. We've never seen this on South African TV screens," he said.

On the representation of women in the show, Mandla emphasised his goal to destigmatize sex work in our communities and shed light on the untold stories of these hardworking women:

"It's going to show the heart of their stories...Every day, these ladies are coming from our townships. We know them... They are women with kids, putting younger brothers and sisters through school and their stories are not told," he added.

Ending our absorbing conversation, Mandla said he hopes viewers, especially the youth, will take from the show a newfound sense of liberation and explore ideas and lifestyles that have remained topics of taboo in African culture.

Mam Rebecca

Industry icon, actress Linda Sebenzo also opened up to Briefly News about her new role as 'Mam Rebs'. On the outside, Mam Rebecca reads like a ruthless mob boss with no sense of morality. She hides her lucrative brothel behind the seemingly harmless veil of a toilet paper factory. She threatens Khaya, forcing him into a life of male prostitution. In a nutshell, she's a killer.

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However, Sebenzo says there's more to Mam Rebs than her rough exterior:

"Her life has forced her to be cruel. She has a soft spot for her daughter though, who knows her true nature," Sebenzo shared.

The veteran actress went on to open up about her own intimate experiences on the show and says she hopes her portrayal of this character will help normalize conversations around sexuality, especially amongst her own generation:

"I'm so happy to play this character... to teach people, especially my age that there's no need to drop dead. It's life, everyone is having sex," she teasingly shared.

Mzansi can't get enough of The Black Door

Peeps headed online to share their reactions to the steamy new telenovela and it seems The Black Door is just the kind of raunchy TV drama Mzansi has been waiting for.

South Africans showed some major love to the production's cast and crew and many viewers felt sure the telenovela would quickly become a hit with local audiences.

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Check out some of the comments below:

@BekithembaZ loved watching the show:

" #TheBlackDoor is a star-studded masterpiece telling a compelling story. Chuma's double life was well told & I assume the rest of the series will see Khaya paying for Chuma's sins while uncovering the truth."

@Refilwe_ZA needs an omnibus ASAP:

"Haena omnibus nyana ka weekend??? #TheBlackDoor"

Zodwa Wabantu makes her acting debut

Since premiering on Monday 11 April, producers of The Black Door have also announced a very special guest star on the show.

Celebrity entertainer Zodwa Wabantu will make her scripted television series debut on the show, with her first cameo appearance expected for Thursday, 14 April.

“There is a world of freedom, a beautiful world that no-one wants to talk about. These are the stories we should talk about. It is happening, they are there.. and it is nothing to be ashamed of," she said about her exicting new role.

Viewers can catch The Black Door every Monday-Friday at 9:30pm on eTV.

Source: Briefly News

Naomi Kobbie avatar

Naomi Kobbie Naomi is an entertainment writer with 3 years experience in the world of radio and print media. She is a language graduate from the University of Pretoria (2020) and has worked for Briefly News since 2021. Naomi has a passion for the written word, whether through her work as a journalist or as a soulful singer. "When I'm not working, I spend my time producing music, travelling or snuggling up with a good movie and some butter popcorn."

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