BY SHARON SIBINDI
BULAWAYO film producer Kudzai Chikomo has released a rib-cracking sitcom series, Bazukuru, aimed at promoting the family unit as a key support system and a foundation for a healthy society.
Bazukuru is made of two words — Bazukulu (Ndebele) and Vazukuru (Shona) — which means grandchildren.
The comedy is presented in Ndebele, Shona and English so as to appeal to a wider audience. It features Memory Kumbota who plays as Dereck, Zenzo Nyathi as DJ, Musa Sibanda as Noxolo, Percy Soko as Jo and Antenotte Sango as Dephine.
Shot in Hillside and in the city’s CBD, the sitcom was written by Nkosilesisa Kwanele Ncube, directed by William Nyandoro and director of photography is Rasquesity Keaitse.
“Everybody, it doesn’t matter who you are, you are a ‘muzukuru’ to someone. It’s a relationship which bridges the old and the young. There is a lot to learn and share between the two generations,” Chikomo told NewsDay Life & Style.
“It’s a relationship we ought to cherish because of the joy it brings and here we celebrate it through laughter and great storytelling.”
He said there was a gap in terms of local content and they were hoping through little efforts they could produce engaging and entertaining local stories.
“The sitcom explores the lives of this unconventional family of three and their relationships within and outside the family. More importantly, the sitcom addresses the issue of a generational gap.
“Derek represents the older generation: the one that took pride in the joy of work and sweating to get what one has. He is juxtaposed with his two grandchildren who have never had to work for anything and will do anything to avoid work. However, not all hope is lost in this current generation,” he said.
Daphne who represents millennials who somehow understand the kind of hard work that it takes to achieve some level of success while Jo represents youths who may not have much but are still completely comfortable with their lives. Chikomo said the sitcom is carried from episode to episode through Derek’s diary entries. Derek is an old retired man who used to be in the army. His only son Derry (Short for Derek) and his wife have just moved to the United States of America, leaving behind their two children DJ who is well into his late 20s and Noxolo who is a school-going teenager.
“Initially, Derek is fine with the idea of the children being by themselves. After all, he sees them fairly regularly at the successful restaurant that Derry and his wife Sheila left behind. Derek however soon realises how irresponsible his grandchildren are,” he said.
“He still tries to ignore this until his daughter-in-law, the children’s mother asks him to move in with the children so that they can take care of each other and with the help of Daphne and Jo, staffers at the restaurant take care of the restaurant as well.”
Chikomo said they were developing the second season and identifying potential partners to take the project off the ground.