“We were told it was a meet-and-greet [session] and then we were let down. The speech was cold and clinical, everyone in the room just had a look on their faces like: ‘What am I going to do?’”
These were the words of a crew member at e.tv’s daily soap opera Rhythm City.
Fans of the long-running show will be sorry to hear that it has been cancelled.
The last episode will air on July 16. This highly celebrated and award-winning show has enjoyed a 13-year run.
The anonymous crew member said the news was delivered by the e.tv team at a meeting that the Rhythm City cast and crew members assumed was called to praise them and to show appreciation for taking the Covid-19 pandemic in their stride.
The source said that the show’s producers did step in afterwards and were more comforting, offering them guidance and organising packages for them. “It was a surprise as the show has been doing well. You don’t can a successful show,” the source said.
Marlon Davids, the managing director of e.tv, explained the decision thus: “e.tv continues to look forward to fulfilling its mandate of producing exceptional and relevant local content.
“The production has successfully achieved its part of the obligation throughout the past 13 years,” Davids said.
At the height of its success, the show drew in about 5.2 million adult viewers a day and has remained a permanent fixture on the top 10 list of the most watched soapies in South Africa.
The show has won several accolades, among them SA Film and Television Awards for best TV soap in 2016 and this year.
Last year, Jamie Bartlett bagged the best actor gong for his timeless portrayal of the antagonist David Genaro.
In 2011, Moshidi Motshegwa, who plays Naomi, took home the best actress award.