Nosipho Dumisa talks creating statement making characters who challenge stereotypes in her Netflix African original series, ‘Blood and Water’.
Although ‘Blood and Water’ features elitist teens trudging through their imaginary universe amid large to small scale conflicts, its story is unequivocally created on the premises of identity and unbiased representation.
It is one of the reasons the character Chris played by Arno Greef, has managed to oftentimes steal the spotlight among the film’s social media commentators. A character who struggles and eventually finds a balance between his once conflicting sexual orientation is guaranteed to spark conversations even though director, Nosipho Dumisa insists it totally represents Cape Town’s free spiritedness.
Phylix’s Blog recently caught up with Dumisa and top on our list of questions was what inspired the creation of a pan-sexual character.
Whenever I sit down to tell any story, and definitely it wasn’t just me as it was a team effort, representation really matters to us”, Dumisa said. “I think representation is important for the world and specifically, giving young adults space. Kids are all just trying to find themselves and the overriding theme in ‘Blood and Water’ is Identity.
For Nigerians, living in Nigeria, it is often hard to admit that a future that is inclusive and free for all might be a dream better left untold. So, it is understandable that multiple reactions followed the development of Arno Greeff’s character through the series’ debut season.
The 32-year-old filmmaker further revealed how the representation of race, gender and sexual orientation free from judgment.
“We’ve got multiple characters going through different phases of their lives and it manifests itself in different ways. So, we felt that it was important if we were able to tell different stories without kind of placing any judgment on anyone and without trying to preach to anyone about anything ant these kids as authentically as possible”.
Even from the drawing board phase, Dumisa admits her team was invested in creating just human stories using statement-making characters. For Chris, it was a challenge of stereotypes.
‘Blood and Water’ is currently streaming on Netflix since its May 20 premiere.