sex edutainment drama series Shuga will be filmed in South Africa for the first time later this year, following seasons in Kenya and Nigeria.
The South African production company Quizzical Pictures - also producing e.tv's Rhythm City and Umlilo, Intersexions for the SABC, MasterChef SA for M-Net and several others shows - will be filming the 8-part 5th season of Shuga for MTV Staying Alive Foundation and MTV Base (DStv 322).
Like what SABC1's Skeem Saam did for South Africa, Shuga, which started in 2009, is doing in a more broader pan-African version, in a series targeting young people that focuses strongly on spreading public health messages around sex through telling stories linked to subjects like drug use, HIV status, sexual assault and unplanned teen pregnancy.
Besides being shown on MTV Base on DStv across sub-Sahara Africa, seasons of Shuga have been broadcast on SABC1, e.tv, MTV and M-Net in South Africa.
The 5th season of Shuga will be filmed in Johannesburg in a few months with pre-production that has already started.
Several roles must still be cast, but the new season will include Mohau Mokoatle as the schoolgirl singer Bongi who gets pulled into a world she's unequipped and unprepared to handle in storylines that will focus on adolescent girls and their vulnerability to HIV infection and unplanned pregnancy.
"Shuga is a trailblazing edutainment property that has had real world impact and changed lives by making viewers reflect on their life choices," says Monde Twala, the vice president for the BET channel and youth and music at VIMN Africa.
"We look forward to working together with Quizzical Pictures to evolve the franchise in a South African context for the first time."
"We have always admired the Shuga project so we are excited to be part of its South African season," says Harriet Gavshon, Quizzical Pictures managing director.