Everything coming to Showmax in South Africa in September 2022
From new Showmax Original Blood Psalms, an African fantasy series from creators Jahmil XT Qubeka and Layla Swart to Steinheist, an examination of South Africa’s biggest corporate scandal ever and the second season of reality show Uthando Lodumo, plus all the Emmy and SAFTA nominees your heart desires, September on Showmax is going to be epic.
Check out our highlights, followed by the date listing.
Blood Psalms | Showmax Original | Weekly episodes from 28 September
In Ancient Africa, one thousand days after the fall of Atlantis, the five surviving houses of Kemet find themselves beset with fears of a prophesied end of days.
Bokang Phelane (Keeping Score, Isidingo) has the role of a lifetime as Princess Zazi, a fiercely determined teenage princess who must navigate primordial curses, long-standing ancestral vendettas, and her inexplicable role as the damning prophecy’s chief harbinger.
Mothusi Magano, winner of four SAFTAs and an African Movie Academy Award, plays her father, mad king Letsha, while SAFTA winner and 2022 DStv Mzansi Viewers’ Choice nominee Zolisa Xaluva (Gomora, Knuckle City) plays General Toka, the head of her father’s Akachi army.
Show creators Layla Swart and Jahmil X.T. Qubeka from Yellowbone Entertainment were responsible for South Africa’s 2020 Oscar entry, Knuckle City. The boxing drama was the most awarded film at the 2020 SAFTAs, where it took home six awards, including Best Director for Qubeka and Best Editor for Swart, and the most nominated film at the 2020 AMAAs, where it won two awards.
Uthando Lodumo Season 2 | Showmax Original | Weekly episodes from 1 September
Bongekile “Babes Wodumo” Simelane and her husband, Mandla “Mampintsha” Maphumulo, are back, taking their fans behind the scenes of their rollercoaster lives.
In Season 1, which set a then-record for first-day views on Showmax, we saw the controversial couple concluding their lobola negotiations, celebrating their star-studded wedding and anticipating the birth of their first child, now affectionately known as “Sponge”.
Now the family of three returns to Showmax for another dramatic season. It will show what life has been like for the couple, revealing the story behind the most contentious headlines of the past year and showing how the couple’s careers are evolving.
Steinheist | Showmax Original | Weekly episodes from 22 September
From the creators of Devilsdorp, Steinheist is a three-part documentary series about the biggest corporate scam in South African history.
On 6 December 2017, when CEO Markus Jooste resigned amid an investigation into accounting irregularities, Steinhoff’s share price plunged by over 90% in a week, wiping over R200 billion off the Johannesburg Stock Exchange – and off ordinary South Africans’ pensions and investments. As Financial Mail editor and Steinheist author Rob Rose says in the documentary, “That’s South Africa’s Enron.”
“Steinheist is the story of Markus Jooste and a multi-billion-rand lie that everyone bought – a lie that was built across over two decades,” says director Richard Finn Gregory, whose Patagonia-set feature documentary The Boers At The End of The World won three SAFTAs in 2016. “How did this happen? How did no one see it coming? And how is Marcus Jooste not in jail?”
Steinheist provides a fascinating, insider glimpse into what former Steinhoff chairman Christo Wiese describes in the trailer as “the Jooste black magic” and into a complex man who is described variously as “one of the best accountants ever in this country”; as someone who was only interested in his business and in horse racing; as someone who “got addicted to the lifestyle, the money, the fame”; and as a “very clever, slick and a very slippery operator.”
The Offer | Binge from 1 September
The biographical drama series The Offer is inspired by Oscar-winning producer Albert S Ruddy’s experiences of making the 1972 smash-hit gangster classic The Godfather.
“Godfather cultists, and we are legion, will find the entire 10-part dramatic series – presented by [Paramount] the studio that almost didn’t make the movie – not just impossible to refuse, but nerve-racking,” says Wall Street Journal.
BAFTA nominee Miles Teller (Top Gun: Maverick) stars as Ruddy; alongside Matthew Goode (A Discovery of Witches), Tom Hanks’s son Colin Hanks (Fargo) and more.
The Staircase | Binge from 15 September
Oscar winner Colin Firth and Oscar nominee Toni Collette were nominated for Outstanding Actress and Actor in a Limited Series at this year’s Emmys for the biographical drama series The Staircase.
Inspired by a true story, the eight-part series explores the life of Michael Peterson, a crime novelist accused of killing his wife, Kathleen, after she’s found dead at the bottom of the staircase in their home, and the 16-year judicial battle that followed.
The Staircase was one of the Most Anticipated Series of 2022 on Rotten Tomatoes, where it has a 93% critics’ rating. The Guardian calls it “riveting… practically fizzing with tension… If you didn’t know it was true, you wouldn’t believe it.”
The Handmaid’s Tale Season 5 | First on Showmax | Binge from 15 September
Based on Margaret Atwood’s critically acclaimed dystopian novel, the multiple-award-winning series The Handmaid’s Tale returns for its fifth season with June needing to redefine her identity and purpose, and face the consequences of her actions in the dramatic Season 4 finale. While the mission to save Hannah continues, Serena works to raise her profile in Toronto as Gilead’s influence spreads, and Commander Lawrence works with Aunt Lydia as he tries to reform Gilead and rise in power.
The Handmaid’s Tale has an 83% critics’ rating on Rotten Tomatoes and a score of 8.4/10 on IMDb, and has won 15 Emmy Awards.
We Own This City | Binge from 1 September
Co-created by David Simon (The Wire – still “the greatest TV series of the 21st Century”, according to a 2021 BBC Culture Critics’ poll), We Own This City chronicles the rise and fall of the Baltimore Police Department’s Gun Trace Task Force and the corruption and moral collapse that befell an American city in which the policies of drug prohibition and mass arrest were championed at the expense of actual police work.
The six-part series stars BAFTA-nominated Nigerian actress Wunmi Mosaku (Lovecraft Country) alongside Jon Bernthal (The Walking Dead), Josh Charles (The Good Wife) and a number of The Wire alum.
Adapted from Justin Fenton’s non-fiction book of the same name, We Own This City has a 92% critics’ rating on Rotten Tomatoes, with the critics’ consensus calling it “a spiritual successor to The Wire”.
Industry Season 2 | First on Showmax | Binge from 23 September
Created by former bankers Mickey Down and Konrad Kay, Industry follows new bankers Harper (Myha’la Herrold), Yasmin (Marisa Abela) and Robert (Harry Lawtey) as they forge their identities within the sex- and drug-fuelled pressure cooker environment of Pierpoint & Co’s London office.
In Season 2, they can no longer hide behind their graduate status. The market is ripping, and Pierpoint’s back-to-work-or-else mandate has the post-COVID trading floor more charged up and paranoid than ever. New US management will be gasoline on the flames – an injection of cross-Atlantic energy that lights a fire under each and every employee.
Rated 18LSDN, Industry S1 has won several awards and five-star reviews in places like The Guardian and The Independent, who hailed it as, “A millennial Mad Men with plenty of swagger”. As Collider put it, it’s like “Euphoria and Billions had a baby on HBO.”
Bosch Season 7 | First on Showmax | Binge from 1 September
Based on Michael Connelly’s 2014 novel The Burning Room, the seventh and final season of Bosch sees Harry Bosch (Titus Welliver) investigating the death of a 10-year-old girl in a fire caused by arson. Risking everything to bring her killer to justice despite opposition from powerful forces, Bosch must make good on his credo: “Everybody counts or nobody counts”.
Season 7 has a 100% critics’ rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
After We Fell (2021) | 22 September
With the fourth instalment of the After film series just released on circuit, you can fall all over again for Josephine Langford and Hero Fiennes-Tiffin as Tessa and Hardin in the third movie: After We Fell.
Based on the 2014 novel by Anna Todd, the romantic drama picks up with Tessa making the biggest decision of her life, only to find everything changing. Revelations about her family, and then Hardin’s, throw everything they knew before in doubt and makes their hard-won future together more difficult to claim.
Night Raiders (2021) | 22 September
Set in a dystopian North America in the year 2044, Night Raiders centres on a Cree woman named Niska (Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers), who joins an underground band of vigilantes in a bid to save her daughter from the military government.
Executive produced by Taika Waititi, the film has won numerous awards on the festival circuit, including six wins at the 2022 Canadian Screen Awards. Night Raiders has an 84% critics’ rating on Rotten Tomatoes, where the critics’ consensus says, “Night Raiders strikes grim parallels between its dystopian setting and the present, offering a disturbing reminder that the horrors of the past are often very much still with us.”
Zeroes and Ones (2021) | 5 September
The thriller Zeros and Ones stars four-time Oscar nominee Ethan Hawke as Jericho, an American soldier stationed in post-apocalyptic Rome under a pandemic and war-torn lockdown. After witnessing the Vatican blown up, he sets out on a mission to uncover and document the truth and stop the true terrorists responsible.
The New York Times says: “Never less than intriguing, Zeros and Ones lingers in the mind. Even after you think you’ve brushed it off, its chilly tendrils continue to cling.”
Will Ferrell stars as the most 70s newsman of the 70s in the satirical comedy films Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy (2004) and Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues (2013). Directed by now-Oscar-winner Adam McKay and produced by Judd Apatow, the films feature a who’s-who of comedy stars, including Christina Applegate, Steve Carell, Paul Rudd and Kristen Wiig, along with the likes of Harrison Ford and James Marsden.
The film that cemented Quentin Tarantino’s status as a pop-culture auteur and put John Travolta back on the map, the Oscar-winning cult classic Pulp Fiction is still the #8 Top Rated Movie of All Time on IMDb, with a killer cast that includes Samuel L Jackson, Bruce Willis, Tim Roth, Ving Rhames and Uma Thurman, and some of the most quotable lines in movie history.
A couple’s relationship is tested when uninvited guests disrupt their tranquil life in the controversial psychological horror film Mother! from Darren Aronofsky (Black Swan), who was nominated for both Best Director (at the Fright Meter Awards) and Worst Director (at the Razzies) for the film. The all-star cast includes Jennifer Lawrence and Javier Bardem.
Mark Wahlberg and Taylor Kitsch star in the biographical war movie Lone Survivor. Nominated for two Oscars, the film dramatises an unsuccessful United States Navy SEALs counter-insurgent mission to track down Taliban leader Ahmad Shah during the war in Afghanistan.
You don’t have to wear a badge to save the bay, at least, not in 2017’s R-rated action comedy Baywatch, based on the mega-hit 90s TV series. It stars Dwayne Johnson, Zac Efron, Alexandra Daddario and, of course, David Hasselhoff.
Expiry Date | Showmax Original | 24 September
Musa (Mbulelo Katise from The Queen) is heartbroken when his proposal is rejected. His younger brother, who doesn’t believe in love, talks him into playing Expiry Date – a game where they date multiple women, with set break up times. But when it turns serious, Musa is faced with a choice.
Set in Maboneng, the delightful romcom is directed by SAFTA winner Sihle Hlope (Lindela Under Lockdown), and co-stars Ishmael Songo (Mpande Zulu in The Wife), Ntando Duma (The Queen) and SAFTA nominees Mapula Mafole (Unmarried, Rhythm City) and Winnie Ntshaba (Generations).
#WeAreDyingHere | First on Showmax | 5 September
Nominated for a 2022 SAFTA for Best Short Film, #WeAreDyingHere chronicles the journey of three soldiers forced to survive in a war they did not choose. As the war against women rages around them, they attempt to find solace to process their pain under the constant threat of their enemy lurking in the shadows. #WeAreDyingHere takes on the violent culture of harassment, abuse, rape and femicide, taking a necessary pause to gain insight into the experience of living as a woman.
Executive produced by Siya and Rachel Kolisi, the short film is an adaptation of the original stage production by award-winning poet, performer and theatre director Siphokazi Jonas, who stars alongside her co-writers, Fleur du Cap-nominated theatre performer and musician Babalwa Makwetu and spoken word artist Hope Netshivhambe. It’s directed by Shane Vermooten (Freedom Road).
Major League: Inside Life | 8 September
The reality show Inside Life: Major League follows the lives of the Major League DJz, one of Africa’s most popular music duos, as they try to take Amapiano music to the world. Fans will see Bandile and Banele like they’ve never seen them before as they give audiences an exclusive look inside their lives. The show stars cultural sensation and MTV Base Culture Squad member Uncle Vinny, with cameos from some of the biggest stars in the country.
George Carlin’s American Dream | 1 September
Described by Stephen Colbert as “the Beatles of comedy”, George Carlin’s fearless countercultural comedy spanned five decades, up to his death in 2008. This epic two-part HBO documentary, which chronicles the life and work of the legendary comedian, was nominated for five Emmys this year and was directed by Judd Apatow and Michael Bonfiglio.
It opens a window into Carlin’s personal life, and includes both material from his stand-up specials and footage from his personal archive, as well as interviews with his family, friends, and the people he inspired: legends like Chris Rock, Jerry Seinfeld, Patton Oswalt, Bette Midler and Jon Stewart.
It holds a 100% critics’ rating on Rotten Tomatoes, where the critics’ consensus calls it, “an exhaustive and revealing retrospective on the beloved comedian’s career that ought to be mandatory viewing for standup fans.”
We Met In Virtual Reality | First on Showmax | 1 September
We Met In Virtual Reality, the first feature-length documentary filmed entirely in VR, tells stories of love, loss, and unexpected connection within the world of VR, where you can be who you’ve always wanted to be.
Nominated for the Grand Jury Prize at Sundance 2022, the HBO documentary has a 94% critics’ rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
Screen International praises it as “a tender, affecting documentary about love, friendship and people finding a place where they can be themselves. It just happens that those people are digitally generated aliens, horned sex demons and other outré creations (even Kermit the Frog) … At once bizarre, charming, perplexing and rich with philosophical implications.”
Nikki Glaser: Good Clean Filth | First on Showmax | 1 September
In this one-hour HBO stand-up comedy special, comedian and actress Nikki Glaser takes on a range of topics in her brutally honest yet conversational style. She delivers an hour of unapologetic and no-holds-barred comedy around topics often considered taboo, and showcases her ability to pivot from sharing humiliating moments to being an empowering voice for women: the kind she yearned for as a confused adolescent.
The Bachelor Season 26 | 1 September
Everyone loves an underdog, and the latest season of the mega-popular romantic reality series The Bachelor, hosted by Jesse Palmer, stars 28-year-old Clayton Echard, who comes over from Season 18 of The Bachelorette to find The One (or two … or three). With high hopes, huge emotions and tears, tears, tears, this promises to be the most dramatic season of The Bachelor ever.
Space Jam: A New Legacy | 8 September
In this long-awaited sequel to the 1996 favourite Space Jam a rogue AI traps basketball champion LeBron James and his son in a digital space, forcing LeBron, Bugs Bunny and a gang of notoriously undisciplined Looney Tunes into the highest-stakes basketball game ever as they face the AI’s digitised champions on the court.
Starring alongside LeBron are Zendaya (Euphoria), Don Cheadle (the MCU’s War Machine) and more, and a nomination for Favourite Movie at the 2022 Kids’ Choice Awards makes this a slam dunk for your next family movie night.
Rapulani! | 12 September
Written, directed, produced and narrated by author Yolanda Keabetswe Mogatusi (the writer-creator of Askies! and director of Rumba in the Jungle – The Return), the delightful animated short Rapulani! tells the story of a little girl with big, big feelings … and even bigger hair.
Feisty and emotional, Rapulani is still mourning the loss of her mom, using her wild, magical hair to navigate her confusing emotions – just as long as nobody touches it! Now on Showmax in English, isiZulu, Tswana and Afrikaans, the 11-minute animated book is illustrated by Kearatwa Sedidi and Sithembiso Mpehle.
What else is on?
Agter Tralies | Citizen Code | Future Human AI | Great Dreamers | Inventions That Built Our World | Joy of Logic | Kings of Napa | Norm Of The North: Family Vacation | Operation Ouch S4 | Privaatspuurders | Puss In Boots | Shrek The Third | Shrek Forever After | That’s Cool | The Endgame | Three Days To Kill | Tumi not Tumi
The Boy In The Striped Pajamas | World War Z
A Family Man | Trust
Ascendant (aka Rising Wolf) | Home Again | Watchmen
American Dream | Choices | Megamind | One Shot | The Player | The Road to Sunshine
The Escape of Prisoner 614
Benjamin Dube: Victorious In His Presence | Benjamin Dube: Glory | Myne Vir Joune
The Addams Family (1991) | Reminiscence | Ubuntu