May premieres for Empini & Mince Jou Hare on Showmax; Chasing the Sun 2 is ready to binge.

CHASING THE SUN S2 | Binge now

CHASING THE SUN S2 | Binge now

Chasing the Sun 2 – A Story for South Africa offers fans front-row seats to the Springbok’s awe-inspiring journey to their fourth Rugby World Cup victory – a historic first for any country. 

The five-part documentary series features never-before-seen footage, interviews with more than 30 players and coaches, and all the highlights from the Springboks’ nail-biting journey to the final. 

The Supersport and SA Rugby co-production, brought to you by Toyota, Betway, and Spur, has almost as much to live up to as the Springboks did, after the first installment won the SAFTA for Best Made-For-TV Documentary, among other accolades, and was hailed as “the greatest rugby documentary ever made” by Rugbypass

Chasing the Sun 2 is again produced by T+W, nominated for an International Emmy last year for Two Sides, the story of the British and Irish Lion’s tour to South Africa in 2021, during the Covid pandemic. 

EMPINI S1 | Showmax Original | Mondays from 23 May

Multi-award winner Nambitha Ben-Mazwi is starring in her first Showmax Original, Empini, opposite three-time SAFTA winner Siyabonga Thwala.  

Set in the dangerous world of the private security industry, the 52-episode series is a high-stakes, action-packed drama about cc (Ben-Mazwi), a deeply troubled private security bodyguard in search of answers. Thwala plays her mentor, Khaya Bhodoza: a prominent businessman and political stalwart. 

Empini’s all-star cast also includes industry legend Owen Sejake (TsotsiBeat the Drum) as General Moeti, SAFTA winner Charmaine Mtinta (Yizo YizoHow To Ruin Christmas, Isono, and Makoti) as Dorah Themba, and SAFTA and Africa Movie Academy Award nominee Neo Ntlatleng (Zone 14Soul City) as Ghathuso Moeti, not to mention the likes of Nqobile Sipamla, Angela Sithole, Sparky Xulu, Amahle Khumalo and Ernest Ndlovu. 

MINCE JOU HARE S1 | Mondays from 20 May

Inspired by Worcester in the Western Cape, Mince Jou Hare follows Frieda as she quits her factory job to set up a hair salon in her home, disrupting the lives of her family, neighbours, and clients in the process.  

Melissa de Vries (Sasha Daniels in Arendsvlei) stars as Frieda, with comedian Dugald Pieterse as her husband, Vincent, Fleur du Cap nominee Bianca Flanders (Troukoors; Nêrens, Noord-Kaap) as her best friend, Julia, and Franka Kirby in a breakthrough role as her daughter, Jody. The cast also includes SAFTA nominee Keenan Arrison (Shirley AdamsThe Riviera) and African Movie Academy Award nominees Lee-Ann van Rooi (Spinners) and Euodia Samson (Arendsvlei). 

The feel-good small-town comedy is written and co-produced by award-winning comedian Shimmy Isaacs, based on the life of her mother. Spinners star David Isaacs, co-creator of Joe Barber and G.I.L., directs. Roberta Durrant produces through Penguin Films, the company behind International Emmy nominees Stokvel and Home Affairs; classic SA comedies like the Rose d’Or nominee Madam & Eve and triple SAFTA winner G.I.L.; and long-running dramas Arendsvlei and Sara Se Geheim

BLACK OPS S1 | First On Showmax | Binge now

Nominated for four BAFTAs in four years, Nigeria’s Gbemisola Ikumelo won her second last weekend for Female Performance: Comedy for Black Ops, a buddy cop comedy that’s now available to binge on Showmax. 

Gbemisola plays Dom, a community support police officer asked to go undercover as a drug dealer with her partner Kay (Hammed Animashaun in a BAFTA-nominated performance).

“Can you really make a hilarious comedy about police racism? … The answer – pretty miraculously – is yes,” says The Guardian’s 5/5-star review, calling the show “a pitch-perfect, star-packed joy.” 

WYFIE S1 | Showmax Original | Two episodes every Tuesday

The Showmax Original Wyfie is up for Outstanding Use of Locations at the Global Production Awards, presented by Screen International. At the awards in Cannes, France this Monday, 20 May 2024, the university drama will be competing against two Netflix productions shot in Norway: Troll and Ragnarok. Homebrew Films, Atlantic Studios, and Greenset are also nominated for the Sustainability Initiative award. 

Wyfie follows four mismatched first-year roommates at Pantera res at the fictional Eike University, with Beata Bena Green (Arendsvlei, Die Spreeus) as Shay, Celeste Loots (One Piece, Trompoppie) as Amanda, Kristen Raath (7de Laan) as Kyla and Mienke Ehlers (Dinge van ‘n Kind) as Mia. 

As Mart-Mari van der Merwe says in Klyntji, “Wyfie lifts the lid on what goes on in women’s hostels… Will raise eyebrows.” Afrikaans TV site Terloops similarly calls it a “boundary-pushing Afrikaans series… a fantastic first in Afrikaans.”Tagged calls it “the lekker new Afrikaans TV show on everyone’s lips.” And Die Son says, “Wyfie won’t let you look away from your TV.”

Keep an eye out for the steady flow of famous faces, including SAFTA winners Louw Venter (Swartwater), Waldemar Schultz (Die Byl) and Inge Beckman (8), Silwerskerm nominee Wilhelm van der Walt (Donkerbos), and everyone from Brent Vermeulen (Die Stropers) to Laudo Liebenberg (DAM).

YOUNGINS S1 | Showmax Original | Binge from Thursday, 16 May

Tshedza Pictures (Adulting S1-2, Outlaws) has created its third hit in a row for Showmax with their first teen drama, Youngins, praised as a “nerve-wracking drama that will keep you on the edge of your seat” by Thapelo Ramorobi in City Press and as “a wild ride full of fun, danger, sex and violence” by Aaron Akinyemi on BBC

Ayakha Ntunja (Thembi on MTV Shuga S3), Kealeboga Masango (Zinhle on Rhythm City), Toka Mtabane (young Tau on Five Fingers for Marseilles), Thabiso Ramotshela (Morena on The River) and newcomer Lebohang Lephatsoana lead the young cast. 

As Oluthando Keteyi writes for IOL, “Youngins introduces South African audiences to a vibrant wave of fresh talent.”

KOEK S1 | Showmax Original | Binge now

When Cape Town housewife Christelle Smit discovers evidence her husband is having an affair with a stripper named Candy Floss, her investigation takes her to a world poles apart from the suburban utopia she knows.

Cindy Swanepoel, who won SAFTA and Silwerskerm awards last year as Annelize in Binnelanders, stars in Koek as Christelle, with screen legend Sandra Prinsloo as the brandy-drinking, cigar-smoking, leopard-print loving, kidney-stealing mob boss she’s soon in debt to.

As Liny Kruger raved on Netwerk24, “You have never seen such a fantastic comedy in Afrikaans as Koek… You are glued to every moment… A series that deserves local as well as international recognition. It’s the most enjoyable thrill ride ever on a screen in Afrikaans. It will smack your head, make you breathe faster, and drive you to the edge of your seat. Enjoy the ride!” 

Written by SAFTA- and Silwerskerm-winning showrunner Christiaan Olwagen (KanarieRecipes for Love & Murder), the R18 crime comedy is directed and filmed by Johannes Pieter Nel (Magda Louw), who Leon van Nierop described as “one of South Africa’s most promising young talents” in his rave review in Rapport.  

MR. BONES 3: SON OF BONES | Stream now

In the sequel to 2008 Mr. Bones 2: Back from the Past and 2001 Mr. Bones, Mr Bones (SAFTA winner Leon Schuster) attempts to pass on his wisdom to his son, Mathambo (Alfred Ntombela). Together, they’ll need to outsmart the businesspeople who want to mine for oil in Kuvukiland and find the lost Kruger millions first. 

Look out for the likes of SAFTA winners Tumi Morake and Jerry Mofokeng, as well as SAFTA nominees Jay Anstey (Legacy, Inconceivable) and Tobie Cronje (Hans Steek Die Rubicon Oor). 

ASSASSIN | Stream now

SAFTA and Africa Movie Academy Award nominee Nomzamo Mbatha (Shaka iLembeComing 2 America, Isibaya) stars in Assassin opposite Emmy winner Bruce Willis (Die HardPulp Fiction) in his final role. 

Willis plays Valmora, the head of a private military operation that uses experimental tech to conduct deadly covert missions. When an agent dies during a secret assignment, his wife Alexa (Mbatha) steps in to bring the killer to justice.

Look out for the likes of Dominic Purcell (Legends of TomorrowPrison Break), Black Reel nominee Mustafa Shakir (EmancipationThe Deuce), and Cameroonian-American singer-songwriter Andy Allo (UploadChicago Fire).

THE WINNING TICKET | Showmax Original | Stream now

The Winning Ticket is a Showmax Original film about a family who win the lotto jackpot – and then nearly lose themselves. 

Lerato Makhetha (A Safe Bet) and Simphiwe Ngema (Muvhango) co-star as the happily married couple, with Amina Jack (Thokozani Zungu in Isibaya) and Quinton Madlala (Ba Strata) as their kids.

Written by Caroline Kganyago (The River, Goodbye Gogo), The Winning Ticket is produced by Kerry Media Productions with Star Mphahlele (Mkhize to MasemolaAboMkhulu) directing. Mphahlele won the African Rising Star award at the 2023 Joburg Film Festival. 

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