“Getting a SAFTA nomination is great validation for my hard work.” - Zola Nombola

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Image: Instagram
Image: Instagram

She’s been all over our screens, gracing us with her amazing acting skills on Single Guys and Galz, Forced love, Lockdown and iThuba lokugcina. She tells us about her third SAFTA nomination.

What was your first reaction when you saw your name?

I was mid-rehearsal for Dancing With The Stars SA when I saw my name on the Best Actress in a Drama category on Twitter. My first reaction was utter shock. I was honestly not expecting it. I don’t do my work with awards in mind – all that I work hard for is to give authentic, truthful, impactful performances. Getting this type of recognition is a great validation for my hard work and I’m super excited and happy.

I just need... arg nvm

A post shared by Zola (@znombona) on

What it is about Roxanne that touches people so deeply?

I think Roxanne’s life and all the ordeals that she went through may resonate with a lot of people in different ways. She was always in a space of being captured and she was always fighting for a way out. I think everyone has or may have an area in their lives that may seem to hold them captive (In Roxanne’s case that was her history with Killer). I think watching Roxanne manoeuvre through her ordeals and come out victorious in the end may have touched people deeply. I also think that people believing that Roxanne was not just a ‘character from TV’ but a tangible representation of a human could have helped with the connection between the audience and the story.

Was there a scene that was very difficult and what did you do to prepare for it?

We had to shoot a scene where Roxanne and Killer were in a car accident and the car was lodged into a lake. Firstly I cannot swim and I have a mild fear of big collectives of water. I had to trust the aquatic support that I was given by Penguin Films. The only form of preparation that I had to do was to make sure that I stayed calm and be brave enough to go through that scene.

Tell us about auditioning and landing the role?

I auditioned for Z’bondiwe almost four years ago now. The audition was like any other audition. I prepare according to the brief that I am given and do my best. I remember being very excited after landing the role as it was my first lead role in a drama, so I was really looking forward to delving into the drama genre.

Tell us about your character Roxanne.

Roxanne was a young creative who worked at an advertising agency. She lived her life to the fullest with her fiancée Ntando, whom she met at university. Her past, unfortunately, catches up with her and her obsessed ex-boyfriend kidnaps her and tries to force her to love him again. 

What are the similarities between you and Roxanne?

We are both strong women. We fight for what we want and what makes us happy. We are career and family driven. We both come from really supportive families.

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