‘We exceeded expectations’ – Mandla N on DiepCity coming to an end

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Mandla N says this is not the end for the actors of Diepcity, more productions are in the pipeline.
Mandla N says this is not the end for the actors of Diepcity, more productions are in the pipeline.

They are a fan favourite.

When they launched DiepCity on Mzansi Magic two years ago, they brought a little something different. 

Black Brain Pictures announced that the show DiepCity will be coming to an end. 

“DiepCity has always been envisaged to be a two-year production in partnership with Mzansi Magic and now the contract is nearing its end. A deliberate and strategic move by Mzansi Magic, to offer viewers a dynamic show that would keep them glued to their screens and secure that slot. During this period the broadcaster has been developing a strategy that will determine its next phase in terms of the evolution of the channel and its content. Part of that process has been about reinventing their current telenovela model to keep audiences engaged,” Black Brain shared in a statement.

The company, which recruited a number of new faces for the production, says “DiepCity fans have played a big role in the success of the show over the past two years, and we are thankful for their support.”  

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Speaking to Drum, Black Brain Creative Director and DiepCity executive producer Mandla N says they far exceeded their expectations. 

“We were given a year but because of the great numbers, the awards, and support from viewers, we went on for two years. So, we are happy about the achievement,” Mandla says. 

“We came and told phenomenal African stories and this is not the end. We have more stories to tell.” Mandla says the production will continue running until March 2023. 

“People are still going to see DiepCity on screen. It will only be coming to an end next year in March because of the new strategy of the channel and storytelling. Gone are the days of shows running for ten years,” he says. 

“Even when we came on board it wasn't supposed to be forever. We are proud to have upped the 20:30 numbers and we are onto the next one.” Mandla says at Black Brain they have major work on the pipeline. 

“We have something mega that we cannot disclose as yet and we will everyone updated.”  

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 As for the actors who will no longer be going to the set of their favourite show Mandla says they have built solid brands to be able to sustain their careers. 

“Some of the actors we had cast on Diepcity had not worked professionally before, we trained them, they had two years to build themselves. They are thespians and true talent and they can sustain themselves, and work on other brands. We will also have a place for them in many other productions. In the beginning, we might have all been sad, but we quickly went into problem-solving mode and they understand their value and they will never stop being stars,” he says. 

“We can’t develop people and leave them on the lurch. We gave them a sense of reassurance. They are already starting to do campaigns. They have been on tv for two years and they got a chance to build their brand and cement themselves, people like Kelina, Charlton.” 

Mandla says his current focus is on e-tv production Black Door, a full-frontal sex and nudity drama series that tells a story of sex workers to create aims to awareness and break stigmas about the oldest profession.

“We are constantly telling unique and authentic African stories and Black Door is one of them. We are working on that and other major productions which we will announce soon.”

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