SA actor Yonda Thomas talks acting career and key industry lessons
- Yonda Thomas is one of the most highly sought-after actors in SA at the moment
- He's recently starred in 'How to Ruin Christmas: The Funeral’ and 'Happiness Ever After' on Netflix
- He chats to Weekend Breakfast host Sara-Jayne King about what he's learned in the industry so far
South African actor Yonda Thomas says it's important for him to strike a balance between honouring his craft and being a "bankable" actor within the industry.
In the film industry, a bankable star is an actor that is able to achieve box-office success simply by showing up in a movie.
Thomas says there's often a huge difference between being an actor, being a movie star, and being a celebrity.
"The trick is to create a balance in all of them where you are bankable because someone wants to put you in their film because they know people are going to watch it", he tells CapeTalk.
Thomas is best known for his Netflix roles on 'How To Ruin Christmas', 'Seriously Single', 'Mrs. Right Guy' and 'Happiness Ever After'.
The TV star says he's always pushing himself to achieve more for himself in his career while remaining authentic.
He came up under the wings of the late legendary casting director and agent Moonyeenn Lee who taught him a great deal about the entertainment industry.
"At the end of it as an artist, the best thing she taught me was be true to yourself and be true to your work and it will translate", he shares.
You've got to keep the ego under check because it's the work that brings all the other things. You can't now abandon the work to focus on the rest of the stuff... the appearances, the radio interviews.. TV, and exclusive stuff... because without the work it really is not going to be there.Yonda Thomas, Actor
It's very important to be bankable. There's often a huge difference between being an actor, being a movie star, and being a celebrity. Actors can be celebrities and movie stars but not often can you find a movie star that's also going to be an actor or a celebrity that can be a movie star and an actor...Yonda Thomas, Actor
Part of being bankable is partly being a celebrity or someone that is celebrated and people want to see and enjoy watching.Yonda Thomas, Actor
I thought I was going to be a foreign services officer or a diplomat and all my kids were going to go private schools and I was going to do important things and change the world! It wasn't meant to be I guess.Yonda Thomas, Actor