the wife series

Showmax has been growing as a streaming service and media house in its own right with several Showmax Originals over the years. The Wife is now streaming with new episodes every Thursday, breaking records upon its opening with it expected to bag “a lot of nominations at next year’s award ceremonies” according to TV pundits.

This is being followed up later this month by Afrikaans romantic comedy Troukoors (Wedding Fever), described as “light and bubbly and more-ish” by head of content at Showmax Candice Fangueiro. Beyond these big series releases, you can also catch a number of sharp South African films, which are making waves such as Influence, Toorbos, Umakothi Wethu and Love, Lies & Hybrids.

TROUKOORS Season 1 | 13 December

Troukoors (Wedding Fever), the first Showmax Original romcom, is made by SAFTA winner Louis Pretorius and SAFTA nominee Albert Snyman of Infinity Films, the creators of critically acclaimed and much loved shows like Die Boekklub and Fynskrif, with regular collaborator Nina Swart directing.

Ilse-Lee van Niekerk (Getroud Met Rugby4 MureDie Boekklub) stars as Jessica, a wedding planner who’s surrounded by love but struggling to find it for herself. Former child star Blyde Smit (Erfsondes7de Laan) plays Jessica’s sister Luca, a software developer who is more fluent in Klingon than flirting, with Fleur du Cap nominee Bianca Flanders (Nêrens, Noord-KaapAddress Unknown) as her bisexual best friend Abi, a professional baker. SAFTA winner Kevin Smith (Skemerdans) is Abi’s dad (and Luca’s boss), with Melt Sieberhagen (Proesstraat) as his boyfriend. The three besties’ love interests this season include Armand Aucamp (Tom in Die Boekklub), Christiaan Schoombie (Warrior), Evan Hengst (Miles in The Kissing Booth 1-3), Danny Ross (Nommer 37), and Fiesta Upcoming Artist nominee Emma van Heyn.  

THE WIFE Season 1 

Showmax’s first telenovela, The Wife, has broken Uthando Lodumo’s record for the most first-day views of all time on Showmax, as well as Devilsdorp’s record for the most hours watched within four days of launch, outperforming the launch of any film or series on Showmax ever, including the likes of Game of Thrones, The Real Housewives of Durban and The River

Inspired by Dudu Busani-Dube’s bestseller Hlomu The Wife, the 40-episode first season tells the story of a journalist (Mbalenhle Mavimbela from Skeem Saam) who falls in love with a taxi driver, Mqhele (Bonko Khoza from Neckie Youth), not realising that when you marry a man, you marry his secrets.

The Wife has topped the Twitter trending charts for four Thursdays in a row, while early reviews are glowing. As IOL’s Debashine Thangevelo put it, “Honestly, I can’t sing the praises enough of this homegrown offering… The actors share incredible chemistry, and their respective performances are unparalleled.”

LOVE, LIES & HYBRIDS | 31 December

Jessica and her lover, Sophia, look forward to a mountain escape for a few days before New Year’s Day, while Jessica’s environmental activist fiancé, Daniel, is away at a conference. So when Daniel arrives to surprise Jessica, he is the one that gets a surprise. Now, with the truth revealed about Jessica’s infidelity, is there a way to save their relationship or will this be the last time the three of them are together?

Directed by two-time SAFTA winner Amanda Lane (iEmmy nominee Is’thunzi4Play: Sex Tips For Girls), Love, Lies & Hybrids stars Megan Oberholzer (Cut-Out Girls) as Jessica, Shamilla Miller (The Girl From St AgnesBlood & Water) as Sophia and Alexander Maniatis (Projek Dina) as Daniel. 

The 16SNL polyamorous love story is produced by multiple SAFTA winner and iEmmy nominee Roberta Durrant (KrotoaHome AffairsArendsvlei) through Paw Paw Films, based on a script by Tristram Atkins (AfgrondArendsvleiSara se Geheim) and Meesha Aboo.  


Who decides what you think? Who decides how you vote?

Diana Neille and Richard Poplak’s globe-trotting documentary feature Influence charts the recent advancements in weaponised communication by investigating Lord Tim Bell and the rise and fall of the world’s most notorious public relations and reputation management firm: the British multinational, Bell Pottinger – whose South African clients included the Guptas, FW de Klerk and Oscar Pistorius.  

A South African/Canadian co-production, Influence was nominated for a 2021 Critics’ Choice Documentary Award for Best Political Documentary, screened in competition at Sundance, and was named Best South African Documentary at the 2020 Durban International Film Festival, among other accolades.

Vulture calls Influence “the kind of story that makes you question everything,” while The Globe and Mail calls it “extraordinary” and “eye-opening.”


South Africa’s official entry to the 2021 Oscars, Toorbos is an adaptation of the beloved Dalene Matthee love story about the uprooting of Karoliena Kapp, one of the final forest dwellers in Knysna in the 1930s. 

As Karoliena, Elani Dekker was nominated for a 2021 SAFTA for Best Actress, with Variety praising her “fine, quiet” performance and comparing her “guileless poise” to a “younger Keira Knightley” and Screen International saying the film is “built around” her “luminous and intriguing central performance”. 

Toorbos was nominated for nine SAFTAs, with writer-director Rene van Rooyen winning Best Script and Andries Smit best score. 

Screen International describes Toorbos as “a refreshingly unusual and unpredictable period-piece…” while Variety calls the film “a satisfying marriage of folky period romance and environmental parable from the misty, mossy depths of South Africa’s Knysna forest region: a national beauty spot much enshrined in local literature and lore, but rarely given this kind of grand-scale screen showcase.”


In Umakoti Wethu,SAFTA and Africa Movie Academy Award Best Actress winner Fulu Mugovhani gives another prize-worthy performance as Khathu, a Venda woman struggling to conceive, who finds herself in crisis when her Zulu husband’s new job takes them back to KwaZulu-Natal, his overbearing mother, and his old flame.  

SAFTA nominee Melusi Mbele (Isibaya) co-stars as her husband Sizwe, with rising star Kwanele Mthethwa (Isithembiso, Abomama S2) delivering a breakthrough performance as Nobuhle, the woman caught in the middle of this polygamous love triangle with a twist. Duduzile Ngcobo (Durban GeneHostelaUzalo) also features as Khathu’s disapproving mother-in-law. 

Beyond Black Productions executive producer Moeketsi Moeketsi says Umakoti Wethu is an attempt to “pay homage to a beautiful part of the isiZulu culture while in the same breath giving voice to those individuals that may not always be heard within that same culture.”