Flamboyant actor and radio presenter Khaya Dladla says he feels sidelined by Uzalo after his role in the soapie was reduced to a few appearances.
Dladla, who plays the humorous GC on the SABC1 soapie, said he is in limbo as his contract was not renewed. “According to producers, I am not cut off the cast but I was never asked to sign a new contract and they didn’t have further conversation with me after my contract expired in October.
“I am not in the credits and I receive nothing,” he said.
Dladla said he last appeared for work in December for three calls after he was asked to come in, and he was surprised to be paid for his three appearances only instead of his usual monthly salary. “I asked if this meant that I am a call actor and nobody gave me a straight answer, I don’t really know where I stand with Uzalo,” he said.
Dladla also claimed that his bosses never informed him that he had been nominated for the recent SA Film and Television Awards (Saftas) for his role in the soap. He was nominated for best supporting actor: TV soap. He said he only learnt about the nomination from a friend. “My friend sent me a WhatsApp saying I was nominated for an award. One of the actors said she was asked to go on stage [on my behalf] in case I won,” he said.
The actor, who rocked a blue sparkling tuxedo at the Saftas, said he called the organisation’s team for clarity. “They [Saftas] said they communicated with Uzalo about my nomination … but I see I was sidelined.”
However, Dladla said he did not hold any grudges against Uzalo and was still willing to work with them.
Uzalo producer Pepsi Pokane confirmed Dladla was still part of the cast and explained that the writers are the ones who decide how long a character stays on screen.
“We have new actors, so we gave the old ones some space to allow new characters to develop. We felt the new actors needed support and exposure, and GC is such a strong character, we just gave it a bit of a pause.”
On his contract, Pokane said: “It would be inappropriate for us to share those details with the media … the specifics of his contract are governed by employer/employee confidentiality.”