Our country is filled with brilliant actresses, and many of them have had their careers embellished with roles and awards from international movies and series. Here are just five who have made us proud.

Phumzile Sitole 

South African-born actress, Phumzile Sitole, has landed a role in the hit Netflix series, Orange is the New Black. “I don’t find myself particularly trying to represent South Africa – we are a colourful palate of skill and talent cultures so I alone cannot truly represent the country,” Phumzile explained in Simnikiwe Hlatshaneni's article for The Citizen; but she is still flying our flag as a woman whose talents are recognised internationally. She also appeared in the television series The Good Fight, and has starred alongside Olivia Washington, Denzel Washington's daughter. 

Connie Chiume

We all know her as the beloved Mamokete from our local drama, Rhythm City, but Connie has made a name for herself in Hollywood for her role as a tribe elder in the Marvel blockbuster, Black Panther. Starring alongside Angela Bassett and Lupita Nyong'o, Connie shares in Sowetan Live that she landed the role in her 40th year in the industry and it is the biggest role she's ever played in her entire career.

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Pearl Thusi

Featured in the American television series, Quantico, she keeps adding awards to her growing list of notable achievements and performances. The model and media personality, who starred alongside Kagiso Lediga in the South African rom-com Catching Feelings, has also been nominated for best actress for her role in the series at the International Achievement Recognition Awards (IARA).

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Alice Krige

According to The Famous People website, the Upington-born actress studied at Rhodes University before heading to London to kickstart her career in acting. The leading lady has long appeared in numerous hit movies and television series, including Thor: the Dark World and Star Trek, where she played the Borg Queen. 

Terry Pheto

Terry shot to stardom after her memorable role in the internationally-acclaimed movie, Tsotsi. She has also had her moment in the Hollywood spotlight through her role as the late Winnie Madikizela-Mandela in the BET series, Madiba; and in the movie adaptation of Long Walk to Freedom as Evelyn Mase, starring alongside Idris Elba. In an article for HuffPpost, Duenna Mambana reports that Terry found that "playing the role of Madikizela-Mandela was one the scariest experiences of her life". 

Other notable local stars include

  • Charlize Theron
  • Lesley-Ann Brandt
  • Kim Engelbrecht
  • Leleti Khumalo
  • Bonnie Mbuli
  • Tanit Phoenix
  • Nambitha Mpumlwana

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