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Zimbabwe on Screen: Three Actors Taking Center Stage

Applause Africa salutes Zimbabwe! Formerly and territorially known as the Republic of Rhodesia, today the country celebrates the 36th anniversary of independence from the United Kingdom on April 18th, 1980. On this celebratory occasion, we highlight

Applause Africa salutes Zimbabwe! Formerly and territorially known as the Republic of Rhodesia, today the country celebrates the 36th anniversary of independence from the United Kingdom on April 18th, 1980. On this celebratory occasion, we highlight a few Zimbabwean actors coloring the face of film.

Danai Gurira

Danai Gurira as Michonne in AMC'S The Walking Dead

Danai Gurira as Michonne in AMC’S The Walking Dead

Danai Gurira is Zimbabwean-American actress whose work is making enormous waves in Hollywood and on Broadway. While Gurira is better known for her role in AMC’s The Walking Dead as the sword-wielding slayer Michonne, she is also a skilled playwright. Gurira’s resume for her stage plays is outstanding. One of her plays, The Convert, was nominated for best writing in the Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Awards, but it is her play Eclipsed, the tale of five Liberian women’s survival during the second Liberian civil war, that has captured the hearts of everyone from Stevie Wonder to Gloria Steinem. With Oscar-winner Lupita N’yongo as her lead, the play pioneers on Broadway as the first to have a cast and team made entirely of black women. As for upcoming film roles, Gurira is slated to play Afeni Shakur, political activist and Tupac Shakur’s mother, in All Eyez on Me.

 

Chipo Chung

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Chip Chung as Mary Magdalene on NBC’s A.D. The Bible Continues

Chipo Chung is an actress of Chinese-Zimbabwean heritage best known for her roles in the 2007 film Sunshine, the TV series Doctor Who, as well as her starring role as Mary Magdalene on NBC’s drama series A.D. The Bible Continues. She spent two years of her young life in refugee camps in Mozambique before spending the remainder of her youth in Zimbabwe, and later moving to the United States. Along with her diverse acting career, Chung is heavily involved in the charity S.A.F.E. Kenya: an initiative that uses street theater, films, and community programs to educate, inspire, and deliver social change. She identifies herself as an actress by profession and an activist the rest of the time.

Kevin Mambo

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Kevin Mambo as Fela Anikulapo-Kuti in Broadway’s Fela!

Kevin Mambo was born in Harare, Zimbabwe and raised in Canada before attending the University of Southern California in Los Angeles to earn a degree in Fine Arts. As a Daytime Emmy award-winning actor and a musician, Mambo is is best known for his role as Marcus Williams on the CBS Daytime serial, Guiding Light. He is also well-known for his dynamic role as the legendary Fela Anikulapo-Kuti in the Broadway production of the musical Fela! Some of his other features include Smokey in Soulfood and several roles in the Law & Order shows.

Featured image © Justin Holt for Byrdie.com
Nkem Chukwumerije
New York, NY – Nkem is an inquisitive and enthusiastic believer who’s always looking for inspiration. She thrives in discomfort and believes the journey is worth the destination. Follow her on Instagram @nkemster & Twitter @nkemistry
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