‘Melusi no longer the same character I signed to play’

‘Melusi no longer the same character I signed to play’

Gomora star Zolisa Xaluva has broken his silence regarding his departure from the show, saying the season 2 storyline had digressed from what initially made him fall in love with his character of Melusi.

In the love triangle, Melusi, who is married to Gladys, portrayed by Thembi Seete, finds himself falling in love with his ex-lover Thati, played by Katlego Danke, whom he had a child with.

“Everyone involved finds themselves in (a) favourable and satisfactory position. I fell in love with Melusi’s soul. I found him to be an upstanding member of society and a committed leader of his community, a great principal, a trying father and a devoted husband.

“These are qualities I thought were lacking in quintessential leading men on our screens. I found myself raring to sink my teeth into the part,” Xaluva told Sowetan.

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“Initially, I found the conflict around his feelings for Thati to be quite exciting because it displayed that Melusi was not immune to the human experience irrespective of the nobility of his character.

“The writing took a direction where it made him a complete philanderer and we lost all the gains we made in season 1 and by the end of season 2, he was no longer the character I signed to play and I no longer had the desire to portray him.

“With him being in prison there is a chance at redemption and I’m open to exploring the character in the future, should the appetite arise,” he said.

He dismissed rumours that there was a bitter war between him and the producers of the show. Xaluva added he was grateful for the opportunity of being on the show where he was stretched to the maximum, “and I believe I gave a decent account of myself”.

“It was a remarkable experience where I was intensely involved. I especially enjoyed working with and moulding young talent, working with all those talented children has been the highlight of the 24 months.

“I imparted as much of my knowledge and played a significant role in grooming the future stars of the business and that has been deeply satisfying.”

He describes the last two years as having both many highs and lows. “Twenty-four months is a long time playing the same character, [with the] highs or lows – I have no regrets. I’m mesmerised by the present and I wait for what lies in the future with bated breath.”

Xaluva has moved onto the next one and will be on a Showmax production titled Blood Psalms in May, where he portrays an ancient soldier.

“I’m currently in production for a Netflix feature film about football. It’s a World Cup year, so we are making a film about football and I portray a football player who plays for one of the big three clubs in SA. I’m also in pre-production for Kings of Joburg season 2.

“I’ve got my work cut out for me, but I’m excited about the next chapter of my career. To do all this and Gomora would’ve been impossible as the upcoming challenges require my undivided attention,” he shared.

The star is also nominated for a DStv Mzansi Viewers’ Choice Awards nomination under the Favourite Actor category.

“Any time my efforts are recognised I feel completely validated, this is no different. I’m excited by the nomination, especially since it’s up to the audience to decide. I believe there’s no validation more gratifying than the validation from the viewers/consumers.

“Also, I am this year’s recipient of Eastern Cape arts and culture’s MEC award for excellence in the arts and it feels wonderful to be recognised by the province of my birth,” he said.

‘Melusi no longer the same character I signed to play’ Thank You

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