Top actor leaves Imbewu: The Seed following pay dispute

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Nkanyiso Mchunu is no longer part of the cast of Imbewu: The Seed. Photo: Instagram
Nkanyiso Mchunu is no longer part of the cast of Imbewu: The Seed. Photo: Instagram


This week, another leading actor exited soapie Imbewu: The Seed. Nkanyiso Mchunu, who plays the role of Nkululeko Bhengu in the Durban-based show, confirmed that he had stopped filming for the show this week.

“This is me signing out. Imbewu and I have decided to end our working relationship,” Mchunu posted on his Facebook page on Friday.

He added:

I’d like to thank the production for the opportunity and platform to showcase what I can do. Thank you to everyone who supported me throughout this journey.

When asked for a comment, Mchunu declined to provide further details about his departure from the show, which he joined in 2019. He would only say that he was busy with other things: “I’m working on something, but I can’t say what it is right now.”

Sources close to the show have revealed that Mchunu butted heads with the production team after salary negotiations failed.

A source said: 

He complained about his salary and being overworked, since he was the main lead. They couldn’t agree on his pay, so he decided to call it quits.

Imbewu: The Seed spokesperson Thapelo Ramatsui confirmed that Mchunu had exited the show following a disagreement with production house GrapeVine Productions.

“He’s no longer part of the show. He had a disagreement with production. We’re not yet equipped with the full details of what happened, but we’ll communicate as soon as we are,” said Ramatsui.

Another source said Mchunu’s exit just two months after celebrated actor Muzi Mthabela and actress Phindile Gwala-Ngadu also left the soapie indicated an internal production crisis.

READ: Mini exodus as two of Imbewu’s seeds fall

“Everyone’s leaving the show – and they’re not only actors. Make-up people are also leaving, while support staff, including admin and media relations people, have left too,” the source said.

Actor Eugene Cele, who is also the show’s publicist and who played the role of traditional healer Nkanyamba in the series, also confirmed his exit from the show.

Cele said: 

I left because I wanted space from the Durban scene and came back to Johannesburg. I just wanted to get back to my old life here.

Last year, City Press reported that Mthabela had ditched Imbewu: The Seed to take up a leading role in Generations: The Legacy.

Sources close to Mthabela alleged that the actor – who is best known for his role as Duma in the now-canned Mzansi Magic soapie Isibaya – decided to leave Imbewu: The Seed of his own accord because he was becoming increasingly frustrated with his Casanova role, which did not sit well with his personal life as a devoted Christian church member and married man.

Gwala-Ngadu was asked by producers to take a break from her role.

City Press understands that the show will bring in actor Kay Sibiya to fill Mchunu’s shoes.


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