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The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency 

A Botswanan woman starts up the country's first female-owned detective agency. Based on the series of novels by Alexander McCall Smith.



(teleplay), (teleplay) | 1 more credit »

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Alice Busang (as Nikki Amuka Bird)
Desmond Dube ...
Tumisho Masha ...
Lucky Sesana
Bongeka Mpongwana ...
Happy Bapetsi
Kremlin Busang
Daddy Bapetsi
Vusi Kunene ...
Doctor Gulubane
Harriet Lenabe ...
Mma Notshi (as Harriet Manamela)
Note Makoti
Lindani Nkosi ...
Hector Lepodise
Vasco Shoba ...
Obed Ramotswe


After her father dies, Botswanan Precious Ramotse decides to sell her inheritance - 180 cows - and move to the capital Gaborone and open a detective agency. From a young age her father had trained her to develop her memory skills and she has a keen sense of observation. Business is slow, but Precious soon has a secretary, Grace Makutsi and fits in well with her neighbors. Slowly, clients begin to trickle in: a woman who thinks the man who claims to be her father - he had abandoned the family when she was just a young child - is actually an impostor; a woman who thinks her husband is having an affair - a view Grace enthusiastically generally supports since she thinks all men are liars and cheaters; and a factory owner who thinks an employee claiming compensation for an accident is scamming him. Her interest is also drawn to the case of a missing boy but she she must face a powerful local gangster to get the information she needs. Written by garykmcd

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Release Date:

29 March 2009 (USA)  »

Filming Locations:



Box Office


$40,000,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?


10ft electrified fences surrounded most sets to protect cast and crew from animal attack. See more »


Grace Makutsi: [after meeting BK for the first time] That man is very much like a woman.
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Botswana wa Tsabakela
Arranged by Gaolape A. Basuhi (as Gaolape Basuhi)
Licensed courtesy of Loao Cultural Company
Performed by The Mogwana Traditional Dance Group
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User Reviews

Out of Africa
4 April 2008 | by See all my reviews

I came this with no knowledge of the books, so was open minded. Most of my expectations where bases on the broadcast time. With the Sunday evening broadcast slot on the British terrestrial channels normally reserved for shows of a gentle nature with a good level of quality, The 'Morses' of this world. Well this did not disappoint I thought it was well directed (what more would you expect from the now sadly departed Anthony Minghella). The direction naturally focused on the lush African landscapes but also has some lovely shots of the cast. Not knowing the books I do not know how the show compares but sometimes that is a favourable state of mind for these things as fans are almost always disappointed. I thought Jill Scott was very good in the lead role and was ably supported by a great cast. Special praise must go to the always excellent Idris Elba and David Oyelowo. Now I know that this has been commissioned as series I do hope there is a chance for recurring roles for their characters, especially that of Idris Elba whom really deserves recognition in the UK (The Wire really needs more exposure in the UK). All in all this has the potential to be some quality viewing for some time to come.

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