A historical account on the life of the Zulu king Shaka.
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1986  

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Cast

Series cast summary:
...  Lt. Francis Farewell 10 episodes, 1986
...  Dr. Henry Fynn 10 episodes, 1986
...  Lord Charles Somerset 10 episodes, 1986
...  Elizabeth Farewell 10 episodes, 1986
...  Lord Bathurst 10 episodes, 1986
Henry Cele ...  Shaka 10 episodes, 1986
Dudu Mkhize ...  Nandi 10 episodes, 1986
...  George IV 10 episodes, 1986
...  Prof. Bramston 10 episodes, 1986
Kenneth Griffith ...  Zacharias Abrahams 10 episodes, 1986
Conrad Magwaza ...  Senzagakona 5 episodes, 1986
Patrick Ndlovu ...  Mudli 5 episodes, 1986
Roland Mqwebu ...  Ngomane 5 episodes, 1986
Gugu Nxumalo ...  Mkabayi 5 episodes, 1986
Tu Nokwe ...  Pampata 5 episodes, 1986
Vuyisile Bojana ...  Mgobozi 5 episodes, 1986
Bingo Mbonjeni ...  Bhuza 5 episodes, 1986
Simon Sabela ...  Dingiswayo 5 episodes, 1986
Sam Williams ...  Jama 5 episodes, 1986
Alex Heyns ...  Vegte 5 episodes, 1986
...  Wilkins 5 episodes, 1986
Geoff Albert ...  Thomson 5 episodes, 1986
Sonke Buthelezi ...  Nqoboka 5 episodes, 1986
...  Lord Kimberley 5 episodes, 1986
Khumbulani Cele ...  Shaka (6-11) 5 episodes, 1986
Dabula Ciliza ...  Ghubela 5 episodes, 1986
Bill Curry ...  Popham 5 episodes, 1986
Terence Dlamini ...  Gazi 5 episodes, 1986
Thembinkosi Dlamini ...  Mevana 5 episodes, 1986
Glen Gabela ...  Shaka (15-19) 5 episodes, 1986
King Beaters Gabelah ...  Musi 5 episodes, 1986
Winston Gama ...  Mzilikazi 5 episodes, 1986
P.W.M. Gardner ...  Aithison 5 episodes, 1986
Keith Grenville ...  Shepstone 5 episodes, 1986
Zipathe Gumede ...  Nkalakata 5 episodes, 1986
Daphney Hlomuka ...  Queen Ntombazi 5 episodes, 1986
Eugene Hlomuka ...  Dilikana 5 episodes, 1986
James Irwin ...  Gen. Chelmsford 5 episodes, 1986
Ian Jali ...  Sigiyana 5 episodes, 1986
Kerry Jordan ...  Rev. Bellow 5 episodes, 1986
Benedict Khambula ...  Witchdoctor 5 episodes, 1986
Charles Kinsman ...  Cane 5 episodes, 1986
Sokesimbone Kubheka ...  Cetshwayo 5 episodes, 1986
Bruno Luthuli ...  Pungashe 5 episodes, 1986
Khulekani Magubane ...  Zwide 5 episodes, 1986
Victor Majavu ...  King Makedama 5 episodes, 1986
Phillip Majola ...  Ngwadi (9 yrs old) 5 episodes, 1986
Humphrey Makhoba ...  Dingane 5 episodes, 1986
Obed Makubane ...  Messenger 5 episodes, 1986
Africa Manqele ...  Ngazana 5 episodes, 1986
Sonto Mazibuko ...  Bibi 5 episodes, 1986
Grissel Mboni ...  Mfunda 5 episodes, 1986
Peter Mgaga ...  Nzobo 5 episodes, 1986
Eric Mcanyana ...  Godongwana 5 episodes, 1986
Dingeni Mhlongo ...  Nomcoba (child) 5 episodes, 1986
Precious Mkhize ...  Njani 5 episodes, 1986
Raymond Mkhize ...  Soshangane 5 episodes, 1986
Amos Mkhonza ...  King Kondlo 5 episodes, 1986
Louis Mtetwa ...  Ufasimba 5 episodes, 1986
Sally Mthembu ...  Majola 5 episodes, 1986
Lucky Mtshali ...  Nondumo 5 episodes, 1986
Sabelo Ndebele ...  Ngwadi 5 episodes, 1986
Daniel Ndlovu ...  Dlaba 5 episodes, 1986
Isabelle Ndlovu ...  Noliwa 5 episodes, 1986
Michael Nene ...  Mbopha 5 episodes, 1986
Shadrack Ngema ...  Joko 5 episodes, 1986
Elliot Ngubane ...  Mphepha 5 episodes, 1986
Peter Nkwanyana ...  Ufasimba 5 episodes, 1986
Alfred D. Nokwe ...  Kuta 5 episodes, 1986
Emily Nompumelelo ...  Mahlana 5 episodes, 1986
Adalbero Ntsele ...  Luthuli 5 episodes, 1986
Samuel Ntsini ...  The Nameless One 5 episodes, 1986
Horatius Ntuli ...  Njanis Father 5 episodes, 1986
Artwell Nyembe ...  Ufasimba Leader 5 episodes, 1986
Aletta Rabotapi ...  Maidservant 5 episodes, 1986
Michael Richard ...  Mordechai Abrahams 5 episodes, 1986
...  Queen Victoria 5 episodes, 1986
Hugh Rouse ...  Worthing 5 episodes, 1986
Cynthia Shange ...  Mkabi 5 episodes, 1986
Sibusiso Shange ...  Phakathwayo 5 episodes, 1986
David Sherwood ...  Captain Blair 5 episodes, 1986
Yule Simone ...  Gendeyana 5 episodes, 1986
Leonard Sithole ...  Mbuya 5 episodes, 1986
Washington Xisolo ...  Bhebhe 5 episodes, 1986
Ron Smerczak ...  Ogle 5 episodes, 1986
Sibongile Sokhulu ...  Nomcoba 5 episodes, 1986
...  Tonino 5 episodes, 1986
Oliver Stole ...  Mbenghi 5 episodes, 1986
Sean Taylor ...  The Prince Of Wales 5 episodes, 1986
Reginald Tsokolibane ...  The Lion Man 5 episodes, 1986
Sean Weir ...  Hockley 5 episodes, 1986
Robert Whitehead ...  Simpson 5 episodes, 1986
Ganza Zama ...  Mtonga 5 episodes, 1986
Vincent Zulu ...  Pakatwayo 5 episodes, 1986
V.E.M. Zulu ...  King Sodubo 5 episodes, 1986
Patrick Zungu ...  Igazi 5 episodes, 1986
Nomsa Xaba ...  Sitayi 4 episodes, 1986
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Storyline

Framed around Queen Victoria's decision on England's political stance towards the Zulu Nation, this mini-series details King Shaka's rise and fall with mythic detail. Prophecy is mixed with recorded fact regarding Shaka's birth, exile, innovations in warfare, assumption of the throne, building of the Zulu Empire, first contact with Europe and the events that lead to his downfall. Written by Renee Ann Byrd <byrdie@wyrdbyrd.org>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Most Savage Warrior of All Time!


Certificate:

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Parents Guide:

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Details

Language:

|

Release Date:

24 November 1986 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Shaka Zulú  »

Filming Locations:


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Box Office

Budget:

$24,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (original)

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This has been the most repeatedly screened mini-series ever shown on television in the United States. By 1992, over 350 million viewers had seen it. The series dislodged The Hunters (1957) and The Gods Must Be Crazy (1980) and its sequels as the prime shaper of American perceptions of "tribal" history in southern Africa. The series even achieved cult status. The UK actors who worked on the project were nearly blacklisted by the UN. See more »

Quotes

Shaka: [their final meeting before Shaka's return to his capital, where Shaka will be assassinated by his own aunt] ... Tell me - How do you catch a monkey?
Lt. Francis Farewell: Well, a gourd is used... with a narrow neck. Bait is dropped into the gourd: a piece of fruit, or - or something shiny. The monkey puts his hand into the gourd to get the bait, and then he's trapped... because he can't get his fist out.
Shaka: Once he realizes he's trapped, why doesn't the monkey let go of the bait?
Lt. Francis Farewell: Because his greed makes him blind.
Shaka: And ...
[...]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air: You Bet Your Life (1993) See more »

Soundtracks

Greensleeves
(uncredited) (music box)
Traditional
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User Reviews

 
A class act
13 January 2006 | by See all my reviews

Although I remember seeing some of the original mini-series in the 80s I had never watched the whole story. My interest was re-awakened when I bought the Shaka Zulu box set in the January sales. Having watched the whole series through I realised that this was a great story, very well told and well acted (especially by the African leads - some of the British cast seem hammy in comparison although Edward Fox to his credit is less hammy than normal).

There are good production values and great scenery (the series used many of the original locations from Shaka's life) and hundreds of "real" extras. All in all a refreshing change from the vacuous CGI laden "epics" which flood the cinema now. I think the fact this was a mini-series has led to this production being seriously undervalued. It is a lot better than many films which get given Oscars.


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