Emmanuel Ikubese and Adesua Etomi are joined by Vanessa Mdee, Thuso Mbedu, Mohau Mokoatle Cele, Jezriel Skei, Nick Mutuma for "Shuga 5."
The series will return with Emmanuel Ikubese and Adesua Etomi. The duo will be joined by Vanessa Mdee, Thuso Mbedu, Mohau Mokoatle Cele, Jezriel Skei, Nick Mutuma as part of the talented ensemble cast for the upcoming fifth season of the series.
Produced by the MTV Staying Alive Foundation and MTV Base, the series is a drama that has been proven to actively change behaviour relating to HIV prevention.
The series will kick off production in Johannesburg, South Africa in December, turning its lens on the issues of sexual and reproductive health among teenagers and young women in the region.
Having successfully highlighted issues affecting young people in Kenya and Nigeria for nearly a decade, MTV Shuga is using powerful contemporary storylines and relatable characters to disseminate public health messages targeted squarely at South African youth, with a particular focus on adolescent girls and their vulnerability to HIV infection and unintended pregnancy.
The upcoming season is supported by South Africa’s Department of Basic Education, PEPFAR (The U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief), Marie Stopes International, ViiV Healthcare’s Positive Action MSM & Transgender Programme, CIFF (Children's Investment Fund Foundation) and FHI 360 (Family Health International).
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Set in the cool clubs, hangouts and schools of Braamfontein and the fictional township of Zenzele, MTV Shuga will see the return of veteran cast member and former “Mr Nigeria” Ikubese Emmanuel Ifeanyi in the role of Femi, a music promoter from Nigeria who’s been living with HIV for 4 years, while Adesua Etomi reprises the role of Femi’s girlfriend, Sheila.
Also returning is South African actress Mohau Mokoatle Cele, who plays dissatisfied teenage singer, Bongi. Also returning is Nick Mutuma’s Leo, who’s looking to find some escape from his past actions.
Tanzanian TV and radio personality and recording star Vanessa Mdee will interpret the role of Storm – a dissatisfied trophy wife with a wandering eye. Also joining the cast is “Scandal” actor Thuso Mbedu, who will play the role of Ipeleng, an ambitious schoolgirl who’s bringing up her younger brother after the death of her mother.
17-year old Jezriel Skei, best known for his award-winning turn in “Four Corners” (2013) will create the new role of soccer-mad macho-man Q or Quinton.
Shuga will premiere on MTV Base (DStv Channel 322)) and BET (DStv channel 129) and other terrestrial broadcasters and other MTV networks and third party broadcasters around the world from 8 March 2017.
Starring South African actress Mohau Mokoatle, the season will kick off pre-production in September, and will be funded by South Africa’s Ministry of Basic Education, PEPFAR (The U.S President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief).
“MTV Shuga comes at a time when the South African government had resolved to implement a 360-mass media behavior change campaign on HIV prevention and sexuality education program," said Angie Motshekga, South African minister of basic education.
The total number of AIDS-related deaths in all age group fell by 35 percent between 2005 and 2013, while AIDS-related deaths in adolescents increased by 50 percent.
The fifth season is being set in South Africa after its first and second season was in Kenya, and the third and fourth in Nigeria.