In a tweet posted back in January, iEmmy nominated actress, Thuso Mbedu revealed “I wrote a role that I've always wanted to play. Bringing it to life will be the funnest process EVER! I'm excited. My fellow artists: Create the work you want to see yourself in. Collaborate and be great," as a way to announce that she has created a TV series of her own.
We recently caught up with Mbedu at the launch of Jeweler, Pandora’s new ‘shine collection’ to find out all about the series, titled iDrive, and just how much of a role she played in its creation.
“It really is my idea entirely and sometimes my brain hurts because it’s like ‘I need help! I need help!’” began the actress, before adding, “what I do right now is that I write and then I get my friends who are in the industry and not in the industry just to give feedback, like ‘what do you feel is missing, etc’ so I could get a better viewpoint.”
Mbedu explained that she is yet to receive funding to go beyond the pilot stages of the show because potential funders are only willing to come on board if Thuso secures a distributor - i.e. a platform to put the final product on once she has the funds to produce it.
According to Mbedu however, the audience response thus far has been largely positive because her iDrive series is unlike any South African production currently on show.
“What we’ve posted isn’t of great quality, I won’t even try and front, I know it could be that much better with the money… this is what we’re capable of doing without any money, now imagine if we had the funding for a capable team. I’ve literally just had my friends helping me shoot this thus far…”
She says she has written about 80% of the series and has an idea about where season 2, 3 and 4 could go. She’s willing to collaborate with script-writers for upcoming seasons in order for them to take her concepts further. Mbedu is also passionate about fostering and pushing writing talent so she would like to afford the work opportunity to as many writers as she can.
She is also planning (along with her friends, Sdumo Mtshali and Bohang Moeko) to give up and coming actors a chance to break into the market through the other productions they have conceptualized and are working on launching. Mbedu did state however, that they will not be working with untrained actors at this stage.
Viewers can expect to see her in an upcoming Black Brain production, called ‘Side Dish Dilema’ that will air on SABC at some point, but for now, the actress has her sights firmly set on building a career behind the scenes.
What to read next - Thuso Mbedu speaks out
Main image credit: twitter.com/ThusoMbedu