Playing the opposite sex is perhaps the biggest challenged an actor could ever come across in the movie industry, but actress Chi Mhende pulled it off like she was born for the role.
She captured the hearts of South Africans when she took up the role of a male bachelor Wandile Radebe on Generations: The Legacy.
In a recent interview with Anele Mdoda on Real Talk, Chi said the role was used as a mouthpiece for the LGBTI community. While it may appear difficult playing a character who is going through a gender transition, Chi said the role of Wandile brought out the best in her.
“This was my calling. I am supposed to be performing and telling this story. I love playing roles beyond myself so this was a dream come true. I had so much fun playing a boy,” she said.
In as much as Chi was having the time of her career playing an opposite sex character, it wasn’t a walk in the park for her. Apparently, transforming herself into a boy on screen took about an hour each day. The challenges include voice practice and dressing in baggy clothes to hide her female parts and get into character.
“The first director that I ever worked with said that it (getting into character) starts in the shoes. That is why I made the request (to wear men’s shoes while rehearsing). Because once you feel the shoes the character is standing on, you feel the character,” she added.
Watch: Anele Mdoda interviews Actress Chi Mhende;
Her character on the show is currently going through a gender change on screen. Drawing energy from Wandile’s struggles, Chi said it makes her feel like a “poster girl” for transgender struggles.
As an activist on the cause, actress Chi Mhende feels a kind of responsibility to make a difference.