Thursday, May 19, 2016

Katlegoe Maboe and Minnie Dlamini to present E! red carpet special from the South African Music Awards; will E! in its 2nd local try-out come to play ... or push?

Katlegoe Maboe and Minnie Dlamini will be the presenters for E! Entertainment's (DStv 124) second South African red carpet TV special, this time covering the upcoming 2016 South African Music Awards (Samas) on 4 June in Durban.

Meanwhile insiders are wondering whether E!'s next upcoming red carpet initiative in South Africa is going to be the same want-to-take-over and pushy behind-the-scenes bitch fest that was observed a few weeks ago.

The channel from NBCUniversal International Networks available on MultiChoice's DStv satellite pay-TV platform in South Africa and across Africa recently did its very first local red carpet coverage from its end of the carpet corner at the 10th South African Film and Television Awards in Johannesburg on 20 March.

Interestingly, TV critics, media and the usual "fashion police" press who were present behind the red rope, in the trenches with E!, and mostly used to everything, couldn't help but stare.

While Idols judge Somizi Mhlongo and entertainment reporter Nadia Neophytou were the Saftas' two official red carpet presenters from a modest square podium midway alongside the red carpet, E! basically looked as if it tried to take over with a massive head-end section hogging the end point and annexing the entrance where Bonang Matheba and Maps Maponyane were the E! Beyond the Red Carpet: Saftas presenters.

The visibly stressed and pushy behind-the scenes E! crew were observed being very rude and verbally aggressive (some complete with British accent) to several people on the red carpet and other members of the South African press situated alongside the red carpet as celebrities, TV executives and media made their way to the entrance.

E!'s OCD behaviour in and around its demarcated red carpet pen was in stark contrast to the other press and TV channels like the SABC, SABC News, ANN7, and others that also covered the event and exhibited the usual level and moments of friendly banter and helpful fraternising although they're competitors.

Ironically, the rude E! behaviour happened while the official Saftas presenters Somizi Mhlongo and Nadia Neophytou and crew actually had more stress since they were covering the Saftas as a recorded and delayed-live broadcast on SABC2.

The NBCUniversal International Networks production was recorded for playout not live but only for two days later on E! Entertainment. E! had the luxury of being able to edit - the official pre-show not so much.

Observers remarked that the overt aggressiveness and producers literally seen pushing people out of the way on the red carpet trying to "ensure" better side and background shots was probably because it was E!'s first time doing a South African red carpet and wanting to "quality control" as many aspects for the final visuals as possible.

South African press will now watch E! to see whether it comes to play or push again when Minnie Dlamini and Katlegoe Maboe present E!: Beyond the Red Carpet: SAMAs.

E!: Beyond the Red Carpet: SAMAs will be recorded on Saturday 4 June at the Durban International Convention Centre and will be broadcast 3 days later on E! Entertainment on 7 June at 20:00.

E! calls it an "exclusive red carpet ride" although its highly unlikely that the NBCUniversal International Networks channel will be the only actual TV channel there for red carpet coverage since red carpet visuals of the SAMAs the past few years have annually been shown on several South African channels.

E! says E! Beyond the Red Carpet: SAMAs will "take viewers into the heart of the red carpet action and beyond" with fans that can "look forward to fun interviews with South Africa's hottest A-listers and the rising stars of the local music scene, plus an exclusive sneak peek behind the scenes of this hotly anticipated awards ceremony".