First glimpse of Mqhele and the Zulu brothers in Showmax Original telenovela The Wife

14 October 2021

First glimpse of Mqhele and the Zulu brothers in Showmax Original telenovela The Wife

When Showmax announced they were making a telenovela inspired by Dudu Busani-Dube’s bestselling novel Hlomu the Wife, overjoyed fans immediately took to social media to offer their casting suggestions for the lead roles of Hlomu and Mqhele in The Wife.

Now Showmax has confirmed that Mqhele will be played by Bonko Khoza. He burst onto the acting scene as Jabz in the multi-award-winning film Necktie Youth and has since appeared in the likes of Professionals and the Emmy-nominated Roots.

Update: Want to know more? Watch the behind-the-scenes special The Wife: Behind the Veil. Plus, binge all of Season 1 and 2 of The Wife on Showmax.

The Zulu brothers in The Wife
Dudu Busani-Dube with the Zulu brothers from The Wife, coming to Showmax. Front left and right, Mqhele (Bonko Khoza), Nqoba (Abdul Khoza). Back left to right: Nkosana (Mondli Makhoba), Qhawe (Kwenzo Ngcobo) and Sambulo (Sipho Ndlovu).

“I read the book a couple of years ago and was a fan from the moment I put it down,” says Bonko. “Fast forward to 2021 when I got sent an audition for the series. I’m really excited to bring to life this incredible piece of writing. Dudu created a compelling work of art and now we get to breathe life into it, put faces to names and show it to the world.”

Who is playing the Zulu brothers in The Wife

Showmax has also confirmed the casting of Mqhele’s family, the Zulu brothers, with Kwenzo Ngcobo (Imbewu) as Qhawe; Sipho Ndlovu (Isibaya, The Queen) as Sambulo; SAFTA winner Abdul Khoza (Isibaya, Kings of Joburg) as Nqoba; Mondli Makhoba (Umkhokha, Generations, Imbewu) as Nkosana; SAFTA nominee Thulane Nkululeko Shange (Is’thunzi, iNumber Number) as Mqoqi; Ishmauel Songo (Rhythm City, Tsotsi) as Mpande; and Swelihle Luthuli (eHostela) as Ntsika. 

The Wife is being produced by Stained Glass. They are known for SAFTA-winning shows like eHostela and Ifalakhe as well as Uzalo, South Africa’s most-watched soap opera.  The Wife Season 3 launches on 10 November 2022.

What to watch on Showmax

Plenty of The Wife to come on Showmax

Showmax has commissioned three seasons, inspired by Dudu’s books Hlomu the Wife, Zandile the Resolute, and Naledi His Love respectively. The books follow the lives of the eight Zulu brothers, a formidable crime family, through the eyes of the wives they marry.

But even if you’ve read all Dudu’s books, don’t be too sure you know what’s coming. “The Showmax series expands on the world created in the novel,” says Dudu. “For fans of Hlomu the Wife, who know all the scenes and the lines, be prepared for new experiences and surprises on screen.”

The Wife is the eighth South African Showmax Original released in 2021, following on from record breakers like the true-crime phenomenon Devilsdorp and Babes Wodumo and Mampintsha’s reality series Uthando Lodumo, as well as critically acclaimed scripted series like DAM, Skemerdans and Tali’s Baby Diary and ever-popular reality series like Temptation Island South Africa S1 and Life With Kelly Khumalo S2.  

Where to stream The Wife

Binge the first three episodes of The Wife from 11 November 2021. Three new episodes will be added every Thursday. The Wife is exclusive to Showmax.

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