Vatiswa Ndara on why she will always stand for her truth and what’s next
SHE’S been vilified and has been labelled a ‘troublemaking diva’ by some. This after Vatiswa Ndara (49) spoke out about her experience in the entertainment industry. In a six-page open letter addressed to the Minister of Arts and Culture, Nathi Mthethwa, Vatiswa poured her heart out. It’s been a few weeks since the uproar and she’s still shocked at how people have responded.
In her letter, she tackled a variety of issues including unfair remuneration, sexual harassment of talent, their working conditions and what appears to be producers and broadcasters working according to their own rules. We catch up with the actress.
“I wanted the conversation too happen. However, one could anticipated the reaction – not the industry but from the public large,” she tells Move!. “Not all heroes wear capes Twitter user wrote. But Vatiswa didn’t do it to be hero, it was from pure“exhaustion”. “I was just doing what felt right,” Vatiswa says. The reaction to was overwhelming, as her frustration and pain in the letter was “I was tired of pretending and keeping quiet about realities that many actors face. I was no longer willing to succumb to that I was being done a favour on a set. Respect has to go.
It’s been weeks since the letter exhausting few weeks for the actor who plays Nomarussia on Ferguson Films television drama series As she was not able contractual agreeement the company, particularly about remuneration, will not be returning season three. As the letter, she was R110 000 before five weeks of work limit to calls. She that after taxes,, only receive R882 She’d initially asked R700 000, and called the production company’s offer ‘robbery and slavery’.
While the letter has sparked robust conversation about the industry, “changes are yet to be made,” she says.
IT NEVER RAINS … IT POURS
Now everyone is wondering whether the popular actress will be blacklisted in the industry.
Some fans in the Eastern Cape have started a campaign to get people to buy her book, I Am …Because of You, to make sure she can still make a living.
This comes after it was revealed that she also would not be returning to Muvhango. In 2018, Vatiswa graced the set of the SABC 2 Venda drama, playing the role of the businesswoman, Moliehi Zikalala. She left the soap in April but stopped shooting in June.
There were rumours that she was impossible to work with – which she’s rubbished.
“I will miss playing her, but not that space. Unfortunately, I can’t go around trying to convince people to not believe what they’re being fed. But ultimately, I would like to be remembered for my contribution to the world of entertainment. I seek to live my truth and express it as best as I can.”
She’s not disappearing from our screens. Vatiswa’s now on Ithemba, a new drama series on Mzansi Magic.
WHERE TO NEXT?
“The conversation continues. It is now not about what I did on 7 October – but something much bigger,” she says.
She trusts that the universe will take care of what awaits her, she says.
Her biggest lesson in all of this is learning to stand on her own.“You can’t always rely on people to get ahead. With any situation there’s always reaction. Positive and negative. You just have to take it all – in your stride.”