Shaleen Surtie-Richards will always be remembered for her outstanding craftsmanship, her moving portrayal of iconic characters and her joyful personality.
Johannesburg, South Africa (11 June 2021) – The sudden passing of legendary actress Shaleen Surtie-Richards (66) on Monday morning was mourned across the country.
Surtie-Richards will always be remembered for her outstanding craftsmanship, her moving portrayal of iconic characters and her joyful personality. She has entertained and educated South African audiences for decades.
Multichoice is honouring her trail-blazing career with a never-before-seen documentary Shaleen Surtie-Richards: ‘I Am Who I Am’. The documentary is streaming now on Showmax and will be simulcast on kykNET and kykNETkie on Sunday 13 June 2021 at 20:00.
Shaleen Surtie-Richards was a beloved South African icon. In 1988, she portrayed the title role of Fiela Komoetie in the Katinka Heyns film Fiela se kind – a ground-breaking achievement for an actress of colour during Apartheid South Africa. With her portrayal of Ester “Nenna” Willemse, the spirited caregiver of Marlborough Mansions in the M-Net soapie Egoli: Place of Gold, she became a household name.
“The documentary was commissioned to celebrate a South African icon and was in its final stages of post-production when the news of her passing was announced. It was an honour for the team to pay tribute and spend time with Shaleen in the making of this film. Her incredible story is historically significant for the people of South Africa.” – Diana Lucas, director and executive producer of the film.
In this intimate documentary, we revisit Shaleen’s life from her childhood in Upington and her first baby steps on the Upington school stage to far grander stages and greater audiences.
Marc Lottering, Sandra Prinsloo, Pieter-Dirk Uys, Brümilda van Rensburg, Katinka Heyns, Patricia de Lille, Bobby Heaney, Kevin Smith and others share their memories and stories of a woman who lived her life in defiance of stereotypes.
In her own words: “And I don’t have time for pretence in my life. So, if you ask me who am I, then I will tell you, I am who am.”
Watch the trailer here: