Blackmagic Design Announces DaVinci Resolve 16

Blackmagic Design today announced DaVinci Resolve 16, a major update that adds a revolutionary new cut page specifically designed for editors that need to work quickly and on tight deadlines. In addition, DaVinci Resolve 16 includes dozens of other new features for professional editors, colorists, VFX artists and sound engineers. DaVinci Resolve 16 public beta is available for download now from the Blackmagic Design web site.

DaVinci Resolve 16 will be demonstrated on the Blackmagic Design NAB 2019 booth #SL216.

Designed specifically for editors working on high end fast turn around work such as television commercials and even news cutting, the cut page is all about speed. It’s an alternate edit page with a streamlined interface and revolutionary new tools that will help customers work faster than ever. The cut page lets customers import, edit, trim, add transitions, titles, automatically match color, mix audio and more. Whether you’re delivering for broadcast or for YouTube, the cut page has everything customers need to get the job done, all in one place. Plus, the regular edit page is still available so customers can switch between edit and cut pages to change editing style right in the middle of a job.

The cut page challenges the traditional way of working with innovative yet familiar concepts such as source tape mode and an A/B trim tool. Two modern features that are rooted in the past. The cut page isn’t about simplification, it’s about removing the things customers don’t need and building powerful, professional tools that help customers work more quickly. And, sometimes, it means borrowing the things that were great about the past and bringing them into the future.

Back in the days of tape, finding a clip was easy because customers could just spool up and down the tape to see their media and select shots. Today, finding the right clip in a bin with hundreds of files is slow. With source tape, customers no longer have to waste time hunting through bins to find the clip they need. Simply click on the source tape button and all of the clips in their bin appear in the viewer as a single long “tape”. This makes it easy to scrub through all of the shots, find the parts they want, and quickly edit them to the timeline. It’s an old fashioned concept that’s completely modernized to help customers find the shots they need fast.

Zooming in and out and scrolling timelines is extremely slow. The new cut page features an innovative dual timeline so customers never have to zoom in or out again. The upper timeline shows customers the entire program while the lower timeline shows customers the current work area. Both timelines are fully functional, allowing customers to move and trim clips in whichever timeline is most convenient. Want to move a clip all the way to the end of a program? Simply pick it up from the lower timeline and drag it to the end of the upper timeline to move it down the edit.

The new DaVinci Neural Engine uses state of the art deep neural networks and learning, along with artificial intelligence to power new features such as speed warp motion estimation for retiming, super scale for up-scaling footage, auto color and color matching, facial recognition and more. The DaVinci Neural Engine is entirely cross-platform and uses the latest GPU innovations for AI and deep learning to provide unparalleled performance and quality. The DaVinci Neural Engine provides simple tools to solve complex, repetitive and time consuming problems. For example, it enables facial recognition to automatically sort and organize clips into bins based on people in the shot.

DaVinci Resolve 16 also introduces powerful new features that customers have asked for across the rest of the application. New adjustment clips let customers apply effects and grades to clips on the timeline below, quick export can be used to upload projects to YouTube and Vimeo from anywhere in the application, and new GPU accelerated scopes provide more technical monitoring options than before. The massively updated Fairlight page adds elastic wave alignment so customers can stretch waveforms to precisely sync dialog replacement with video, immersive 3D audio support, new bus tracks, automation previews, dialog sweetening tools and even more FairlightFX.

DaVinci Resolve Studio 16 features major improvements to existing ResolveFX, along with several new plugins that editors and colorists will like. There are new ResolveFX plugins for adding vignettes, drop shadows, removing objects, adding analog noise and damage, chromatic aberration, stylizing video and more. There are also improvements to the scanline, beauty, face refinement, blanking fill, warper, dead pixel fixer and colorspace transformation plugins. Plus, customers can now view and edit ResolveFX keyframes from the timeline curve editor on the edit page or from the keyframe panel on the color page.

“The new cut page in DaVinci Resolve 16 is the first professional editing interface designed to help television commercial and other high end editors meet super tight deadlines on fast turn around projects,” said Grant Petty, Blackmagic Design CEO. “It’s exciting because we’ve designed a whole new high performance non-linear workflow! The cut page is all about power and speed. Plus, editors that need to work on more complex projects can still use the regular edit page. DaVinci Resolve 16 gives different editors the choice to work the way they want!”

DaVinci Resolve 16 Features

  • DaVinci Neural Engine for AI and deep learning features.
  • Dual timeline to edit and trim without zooming and scrolling.
  • Source tape to review all clips as if they were a single tape.
  • Trim interface to view both sides of an edit and trim.
  • Intelligent edit modes to auto sync clips and edit.
  • Timeline review playback speed based on clip length.
  • Built in tools for retime, stabilization and transform.
  • Render and upload directly to YouTube and Vimeo.
  • Direct media import via buttons.
  • Scalable interface for working on laptop screens.
  • Create projects with different frame rates and resolutions.
  • Apply effects to multiple clips at the same time.
  • DaVinci Neural Engine detects faces and auto creates bins.
  • Frame rate conversions and motion estimation.
  • Cut and edit page image stabilization.
  • Curve editor ease in and out controls.
  • Tape style audio scrubbing with pitch correction.
  • Re-encode only changed files for faster rendering.
  • Collaborate remotely with Frame.io integration.
  • Improved GPU performance for Fusion 3D operations.
  • Cross platform GPU accelerated tools.
  • Accelerated mask operations including B-Spline and bitmap.
  • Improved planar and tracker performance.
  • Faster user and smart cache.
  • GPU accelerated scopes with advanced technical monitoring.
  • Custom and HSL curves now feature histogram overlay.
  • DaVinci Neural Engine auto color and shot match.
  • Synchronize SDI output to viewer zoom.
  • Mix and master immersive 3D audio.
  • Elastic wave audio alignment and retiming.
  • Bus tracks with automation on timeline.
  • Foley sampler, frequency analyzer, dialog processor, FairlightFX.
  • 500 royalty free foley sounds effects.
  • Share markers and notes in collaboration workflows.
  • Individual user cache for collaborative projects.
  • Resolve FX plugins with timeline and keyframes.

Availability and Price
DaVinci Resolve 16 public beta is available now for download from the Blackmagic Design web site www.blackmagicdesign.com.

Q&A With Matthew Parkhill – Co-Creator, Writer, Showrunner, Director Of Fox’s ‘Deep State’ Eps 1, 2, 7, 8

Can you talk about how you juggle all your responsibilities on DEEP STATE season two?

In terms of the showrunner side of things, the showrunner is someone who ultimately has the creative responsibility for the show. So, it’s his or her vision, ultimately, and that covers everything from re-writing scripts to approving costume, hair, make-up, locations and casting actors. You’ve got an entire overview of the show, of how you want the show to be, right from the big picture all the way down to the tiny little day-to-day details. A lot of showrunners write because part of the job as a showrunner is also to write and re-write scripts so that all the scripts have the same tone and the same feel throughout the episode.

On the writing side we also have a team of writers in a writer’s room but for me, as a writer/director, the writing is only the first half of the process. I don’t really think about the writing and directing as different, because when I write it, I’m also thinking about how I want it to be directed.

You know what you want from the scene, you don’t have to, as a director, say, “Well, I need to talk to the writer,” you can just make decisions there and then, because you know whether it’s in keeping with that character or the tone of the scene or what the scene is about instinctively because you’ve written it. So, yes, there are lots of different hats, it can be stressful but I can’t imagine doing it any other way.

Can you tell us, how has DEEP STATE moved on from season one to two?

DEEP STATE has moved on in the following way – there’s a new arena, there’s a new story, there’s a new world. The world is still partly in London and Washington, but there’s a new part of the story set in Mali in the capital of Bamako, and in the North in the Sahara desert in the land of the Tuareg people who traverse the Sahara. We have some of our same characters returning, we also have three or four major new characters. So, thematically it’s moved on, I always think of season one as an 8-hour movie or a novel, and season two is another 8 hour movie with some of the same characters and some different characters but with a different setting. The way it’s designed is so that you could watch season two without having seen season one, and become immersed in the story of season two.

Do you think it’s easier this way, to be the writer and director at the same time?

Definitely. I think it would be very hard for me to direct someone else’s material because I know my material in my heart.

What kind of research did you undertake for this season?

I read a lot of books and I consume a lot of news. The genesis of this season was that I heard the news about four US special forces who were ambushed and killed in Niger. Immediately, I started to think, ‘What were they doing in Niger?’ I started to think beyond the tragedy and ask myself ‘What’s really going on?’

For season one, it was the Iranian nuclear deal and that was my beginning point. There’s always a place in the headlines where it begins. I always try and base it in real events that are happening and it grows from there.

In terms of talking to experts, I’ve spoken to ex-MI6, ex-CIA, ex-FBI, ex-NYPD and LAPD. We’re not a documentary, it’s fiction, but I try to route it as much as possible in realness. Seeping yourself in real life events and then sort of building a narrative from there is, for me, is the most exciting way of working.

You have a crew that has stuck with you for season two. What have you asked them to do in terms of keeping it authentic?

It gets a lot easier if it’s the same actors and DP, costume, hair and make-up. When you’ve worked with people before, there’s a shorthand. Part of working with someone for the first time is in getting to know that person, getting on the same page with them, creatively. It takes a lot of energy. What I love, whether it’s Steve Summersgill on production design or Rachel Walsh on costume, Amy Stewart, our hair and make-up designer, what’s amazing about all of those three key creative positions is, I can say to them, “Look, this is what I want, this is what I’m after,” and I know they will go away and do research and make it happen.

What about the scale of the show and what is it like shooting everything on location?

I love shooting on location but it does mean it’s harder on the crew and it’s harder on the production machine because you’re moving all the time. When you shoot on a soundstage it’s nice and quiet, it’s a controllable environment, it’s not as stressful. When you’re out on location and it’s hot or there are noises going off or there are sewers backing up, then there’s real life issues to deal with, it gets more stressful.

The upside of it is, creatively, it’s much more real and I get ideas and inspirations from real life locations. I’ll see something and I’ll say, ‘I want to rewrite the scene and I want to change it to fit this building. I want to change it to fit that street.’ I love putting actors in real places and I think certainly the actors on this show respond to that. They’re in real places with real smells, real heat, real sounds.

Why is collaboration so important to you? How does that work for you?

Collaboration is important for me because it makes the show better, it’s as simple as that. My Director of Photographer may come to me and suggest a shot, that makes it better, the actor may say to me, ‘Can I try this?’ or ‘Can I say this?’ and that makes it better. When you start out as a director, you think you’ve got to have all the answers. Everyone is looking to you for all the answers and you’ve got to have control over everything, and actually, the better I’ve got as a director, the less I feel that way.

I’ve seen really good scripts and really good shows with really talented people not work. Most of the time it’s because people are not making the same show, they’re on different pages, creatively. If everyone is on the same page, life gets a lot easier.

Can you talk about the major difference between telling a story that is based in the Middle East versus this season, which is based in Africa?

There aren’t any differences in the way I approach the script. It’s all about making the story work and making it relevant and surprising. I think one of the keys to DEEP STATE is the emotion and the emotional storylines that run through it. We are primarily an espionage thriller, we are a political show, but what makes it worth it for me are all the emotional storylines running through it. Whether it’s Harry or Leyla or Nathan or Aicha.

The differences come in the design, where you’re shooting it, the locations, but how I approach the story, whether I’m setting a story in Mali or whether I’m setting a story in Russia or America, it’s always about the story and the characters.

What’s the number one goal for you for season two, regarding the storytelling?

I think the number one goal for me is to create what David Simon (creator of ‘The Wire’) called ‘lean-in television.’ You’re not sitting back as the viewer, you’re leaning in, hopefully on the edge of your seat. My goal is to create a show that you cannot turn away from, you’ve got to pay attention. My goal is to create a great thriller that has a powerful emotional heart to it.

How is this espionage thriller different from others in the genre?

One of the things this show does that is different from a lot of espionage shows is we follow our characters to their homes. We look at the emotional consequences of their actions.

Can you summarise where we left off last season and where we’re going to be picking up from?

The first thing I would say is, you don’t have to have watched last season to watch this season. It’s like an eight-hour movie and last year’s eight-hour movie told a lot of stories, This year’s eight-hour movie picks up certain threads from characters like Harry and Leyla, and it takes them and puts them in a new world, which, this season, is the world of Mali.

This season we’ve split the narrative into a past and a present storyline. The present storyline takes place now, the past storyline takes place two years ago. What that allows us to do is let the past storyline inform the present and the present inform the past. Part of what this show is about, for the audience, is putting together all these jigsaw pieces until they complete the puzzle.

Going into the past also allows you to look at when Harry and Leyla first met, how did they get to know each other. George White’s character, who is dead in the present, but in the past, how did he go from a man who was serving Queen and Country to a man who was serving the powers of the deep state? I love things not being completely linear, I love jumping around in time. I think audiences are super-smart these days, there’s so much great TV around, that they want to be challenged and they want to become part of a more challenging and bigger experience.

How do you keep the two storylines straight in your head while you are directing?

It’s easier for me keeping things straight in my head because I created it! It’s there, it’s always there, I always know and part of my job is to help the others keep it straight.

Why are strong female characters so important to you?

The strong female characters are super important to me and they have been ever since my daughter was born. When my daughter was born, I became acutely aware of how women and girls end up getting a not-so-great deal in life a lot of the time, so I try and create female characters who are strong, who are powerful, who have their own storylines and aren’t just like the girlfriend or the wife or the mother. They are those things too, we have characters who are mothers and characters who are wives, but they have their own powerful storylines and it’s incredibly important to me the way we treat them visually. We have a lot of beautiful women on our show, but we’re not a show that puts them in figure-hugging clothes or tight dresses, we don’t sexualise them, they’re not there to be eye-candy for somebody else. That goes for the makeup as well because if I can see it, it’s not real, unless that character has made a particular decision to do that. For example, Sullivan’s character is a senator and she’s on the Intelligence Committee and there are times she will put on make-up. But Leyla’s character or Aicha, they’re on the run for their lives, when are they going to go and find time to put on some make-up?

You have the American actor Walton Goggins joining the team this season. How has that been?

It’s an amazing relationship with Walton. I count myself very lucky. He’s a phenomenal actor and there are times, as a director, I just sit back and enjoy watching him work. He has such truth and pain and charm and he just lights up the screen. I love the way he works, but he’s also an incredibly lovely human being to be around.

With every episode and every script we talk and come up with ideas. He will say ‘What about this? What about that? What if I did this? What if I said that?’ It comes from such a place of generosity and he’ll challenge me where I need to be challenged and he’ll offer ideas where I want ideas and it’s a lovely sort of collaborative experience, it really is. It’s been one of my best working experiences working with him and I hope we carry on and do lots and lots more things together.

One of the themes we’re seeing is that it’s never as simple as the good guys versus the bad guy. The lines get blurry.

We are not a good guys versus bad guys show. What I find fascinating with our characters are the moral grey areas they stray into, all the time. The closest character we have to a noble character is probably Sullivan (played by Victoria Hamilton), but even Sullivan does things that affect her marriage because she is in pursuit of the truth and sometimes people who dedicate themselves to something better or something higher do it at the expense of their families. Even truly beautiful, lovely people are capable of meanness and selfishness, so I just find those characters more fascinating to explore.

Can you talk about the economy of war?

In researching the show last year, one of the things that startled me and stunned me was that the war machine isn’t just about bullets and missiles, it’s about socks and towels and fatigues. I read an incredibly startling thing which was it costs several hundred dollars to deliver a gallon of fuel to the battlefield in Afghanistan. Think of the mark-up on that, right? The war machine isn’t just about the guns and the bullets and the missiles, the money is made all the way down the line. It’s a lot of industry.

Are you shooting two different styles for the two different time periods?

No, the shooting style is the same but the grade will be slightly different. In the present, it’s a much richer contrast, in the past, we will drain the colour out of the images a little bit. In the first episode, you’ll have these titles that will say ‘Present day. Two years ago’, but the idea is, visually, the audience, very quickly, will know what time period they’re in due to the grade of the show. Hopefully, within the first episode, the audience will say, ‘Oh, I’m in the past. I’m in the present. I’m in the past.’ just from the visual.

Are you surprised about the parallels to the stories you’re telling and what we are hearing on the news today?

I’m not surprised when we find that we are shooting something that is so current it’s in the news that day. Walton came in one day with an article from the New York Times that said that the CIA have spent six months building drone bases in Mali and Algeria, in secret, which is part of what our story is. I’m not freaked out because I know it’s happening through what I’ve been reading in the books I use for research. If you do your research properly you don’t need to make these stories up. It makes my job very easy.

Do you have a favourite scene that you’ve shot or looking forward to shooting?

The funny thing about that is, they keep getting replaced. I go to work and I think I’m really looking forward to a certain scene. We shoot quite fast and I’ll finish the day and I can’t even remember what I shot that morning. What I love is when a scene surprises me. When two actors take a scene and there’s a sudden warmth there that I didn’t expect or there’s a heartache there or pain there that I didn’t expect.

Can you tell us about Harry and Leyla in season two?

They’ve got much bigger, meatier stories this year which I’m very happy about. In the past storyline, we show how they came together and how their relationship started. In the present, we start eight months after the end of season one and we start in a place where their relationship was broken and so it’s kind of interesting because, in the past, you see them together and in the present, you’re seeing them dealing with the broken relationship.

We see Alistair Petrie back as George White in season two even though he died at the end of season one. Can you explain that storyline?

The biggest mistake I made last year was killing George White off. The way this show works, I’ve got all the story worked out before we start shooting. I know which character is going to live and die before we start shooting. What you don’t know is who you’re going to cast, so someone like Alistair Petrie comes along and just kills that role of George White, and for me and a lot of people, it’s become one of their favourite characters.

I’m sitting there like an idiot saying, ‘Why did I kill that character?’. One of the remedies to that is, if I tell a story in the past, I can bring him back without doing the twin brother storyline or the ‘he’s not really dead’ storyline, which I didn’t want to do, because he’s dead! So, telling that storyline in the past was a way to get to work with Petrie again and get to work on that amazing character again. As he said to me yesterday, the biggest problem is, if we do a season three, how am I going to bring him back again?

If DEEP STATE three happens, can you give us any hints?

DEEP STATE season three! What I do, is I think of a world. A lot of people were asking if I was thinking of setting the show in Russia this year. I did, but the reason why I didn’t do it is because I think there’s going to be a lot of shows set in Russia coming in the next few years. I’m trying to find something that is hopefully different, like setting a show in Mali. I’ll be looking for some sort of idea or story that gets me excited, and makes me go ‘What’s that about?’ and ‘What if this happened?, and then it’s about finding a new setting.

Read more about Deep State season 2

Q&A with Joe Dempsie (Harry Clarke)

Q&A with Walton Goggins (Nathan Miller)

Q&A With Karima McAdams (Leyla Toumi)

DEEP STATE 2 will broadcast on FOX Africa on Wednesdays at 20:45 CAT, from 15 May.

André Schwartz Releases Brand New Single

A superstar is described as a person or performer who enjoys wide recognition and is esteemed for exceptional talent. South Africa, while abundant with talent, boasts only a handful of superstars – and André Schwartz is one of them.

The acclaimed singer, songwriter, stage performer, actor (Sterlopers, 7de Laan) and television presenter, who is undoubtedly one of South Africa’s most talented and accomplished entertainers, is making waves with his brand new single, EK SAL WAG, which is the second single taken from his upcoming studio album that will be released on 19 July 2019.

The track can be described as a pop song with an old-fashioned yet contemporary feel. Written by Hanmari de Wet, a kykNET Afri-Visie winner, the song is about having unshakable faith in love. It conveys the message that if there is hurt, there can be healing, and to fight for and believe in what you want. “I was drawn to this song when I first heard it because of the beautiful lyrics and melody, but also because of the story it tells … the message,” explains André.

This sentiment ties in with one of his core beliefs – that music should tell a story and connect with audiences. “Everything must tell a story. If you perform a song on stage, there must be a reason for it. Sure, people must enjoy the tune, but they must also identify with the emotion and message.”

As to how the song will be received, he feels that he believes that it will have broad appeal as its message is universal. “We’ve all had to overcome difficult obstacles, but the power doesn’t lie in walking away without solutions. We must face the demons and the angels,” he says.

EK SAL WAG will be complemented by a music video with a rather unusual angle with concept by André and directed by Christiaan Wolf. The video will be released on 10 May 2019.

“The story is ‘told’ by children playing with dolls. I wear the same outfit as one of the dolls, and there is a constant shift between the children’s fantasy world and reality. The video portrays the innocence of children who, through play, are able to manipulate life, but it’s really a gaze into their future reality. It is pure cabaret set against a seemingly naïve song,” explains André.

Music has been a part of André’s life from a young age and he made his television debut at fourteen. He is classically trained, both vocally and as a pianist, and is therefore equally comfortable behind the piano and microphone.

As a recording artist he has released fourteen albums, of which many have reached gold status, and has written and composed several of his radio hits himself. He is best-known for songs like Ek wil jou nooit weer sien and Lief vir alles hier, as well as his ability to captivate and entertain audiences with his charming and lively stage personality.

He is also an extremely gifted music theatre performer and has starred in leading roles of many world-class productions, including Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat, Jesus Christ Superstar, Pirates of Penzance and The Phantom of the Opera. He received various awards for his performance as ‘The Phantom’ and is acknowledged as one of the best ‘Phantoms’ to ever grace the stage.

Despite all this experience, André believes that the entertainment industry has a lot to teach artists – even those who have been in the game for a while. “When you’ve been in the industry for some time, you start wondering if you are still relevant. To remain relevant, you must ensure that you fully understand contemporary genres, and you must learn from those who are younger than you. Of course, in turn, you must also impart your knowledge.”

With such an illustrious career, choosing a single career highlight is not easy for him. “Each new release is a high and it is an amazing feeling to hear that your songs are doing well on the radio,” he says, “but, my first Afrikaans CD and my role as ‘The Phantom’ will always have a special place in my heart.”

One of the aspects that makes André such a remarkable artist is the fact that his talents are multi-faceted. In addition to working on a new album – the first single, Tweede Kans, was released last year – he is also reviving the live performance part of his career with an exciting new show called Die Pad.

Described as a joyful yet nostalgic journey through the life of this incredible musician, it is a veritable feast of singing, speckled with anecdotes from André’s past and present, and showcases his phenomenal talent – especially his incredible opera singing voice. It’s easy to see why he carries Andrew Lloyd Webber’s stamp of approval.

“Die Pad is aimed at sharpening people’s perspective on and appreciation for life and the stories are filled with humour and positive thoughts,” he explains.

EK SAL WAG not only showcases André Schwartz’s incredible versatility, but is also one of those songs that – like the artist – deserves a prominent place in the history of South African music.

The song is available on all digital platforms and can be purchased here: umgafrica.lnk.to/eksalwag

Q&A With Karima McAdams (Leyla Toumi) Of Fox’s ‘Deep State’

Pictured: Karima McAdams as Leyla Toumi in DEEP STATE
© Fox Networks Group, Europe & Africa

Could you please summarise where we left Leyla at the end last season?

Season 1 is about a covert team from the CIA and MI6 who are on a mission looking for six Iranian nuclear scientists. When we leave Harry and Leyla at the very end of Season 1, they are feeling very disillusioned and quit. They go back to England. Harry ventures off to Africa which we see at the start Season 2. When we pick them back up in Season 2, they are both struggling to pick up the pieces of their lives.

Can you talk a bit about the importance of women in the show and to your role?

When the DEEP STATE script came to me, I was seeing a plethora of other scripts that had Arab roles for women. The reason why I looked at Leyla as a little bit more interesting is because she embodied a strong woman. She wasn’t there because of her Arab roots. She’s incredibly skilled in languages. She’s very capable. She’s very emotional, but she doesn’t let it get in the way of her work. She doesn’t see the difference between women and men in her team. She doesn’t want to be mothered by anyone and I think that’s a really important. I think she’s incredibly strong.

How do you see the Nathan Miller character in relation to Harry and Leyla? Do you see him as an adversary?

I think Leyla finds it incredibly hard to find the good in Nathan Miller even before anything bad or dodgy happens. I think she just cannot put her finger on it, but there is something about this man that isn’t transparent. She’s watching him the entire time.

Can you talk about working with the newest member of the team, Walton Goggins who portrays Nathan Miller?

It’s just a pleasure and it’s such an education for me. He’s also incredibly giving and supportive. I know he signed on to do the show because he completely believes in the project. In Season 1, we were trying to put something together for the first time but in Season 2, we’re trying to improve on the last season and see where we can take it, and Walton is an integral part to that process.

How much do you collaborate with Matthew about your work?

Whenever I have any questions, I go straight to Matthew and he always has the right answer to support me. He is also very flexible and allows his actors to discover things for themselves but he is also incredibly good at fine tuning the little things that you’re sort of stepping on. Similarly, our other director, Joss Agnew, is wonderful to work with. He remains so calm under pressure. They’ve got a lot on their plates. We move at such a fast pace making this show. There is no rest. It’s challenging and they deal with it incredibly well.

How do you deal with the two different timelines? How do you keep those straight in your head?

I think it’s helpful to meet up with your fellow actors and remind yourself as to where you are and where you’ve come from in any scene. We’re not filming chronologically. Everything is shot completely out of order which doesn’t help! It certainly keeps you on your toes.

Did you do any research before starting filming the show?

Yes, we watched a lot of documentaries about the sub-Saharan wars going on. It’s incredibly painful to watch people who are living in such harsh conditions.

Do you see parallels between the show and the revelations we hear in the news every day?

Absolutely. There are so many parallels. The themes explored in DEEP STATE two are very current.

Can you give us an example?

The Sub-Saharan war on resources is an interesting one. We all have so many electrical appliances and nobody ever thinks that one of the key ingredient for most of these appliances come from Africa, one of the poorest continents on the planet.

Do you believe there is a deep state?

Yes, I do believe that there is a deep state.

Do you see yourself in your character Leyla? Do you bring any Karima to Leyla?

Yes, absolutely, there are many similarities. I often think when I am trying to relate to the character, what would I do? However, I also think a lot of the time I am looking for the things that are most different between us. It is more interesting to find the differences more than the similarities. But there are many similarities between us.

How politically aware or active are you?

I really do care. I absolutely do care, but I have to be careful because it’s so easy to fall down the rabbit hole and be completely consumed by politics.

If you could play any other character in the show, who would it be and why?

If I could play any other character in this show, I would probably play Aminata Sissoko. I think she’s a fabulous character. What a woman. I think that she has some of the most beautiful lines in the show.

I also really like Nathan Miller, I think Nathan’s a brilliant character. He has a monologue in the last episode that I think is one of the most beautiful pieces of writing. He is an ordinary man who fell into a job that is incredibly taxing and it has impinged on his personal life and he’s gotten stuck. I like him. I like his drive and his endless tenacity. I think he’s very interesting.

Read more about Deep State season 2

Q&A with Joe Dempsie (Harry Clarke)

Q&A with Walton Goggins (Nathan Miller)

Q&A With Matthew Parkhill (Co-Creator, Writer, Showrunner, Director – Eps 1, 2, 7, 8)

DEEP STATE 2 will broadcast on FOX Africa on Wednesdays at 20:45 CAT, from 15 May.

New Joshua Na Die Reën Album No 1 On iTunes

The long-awaited third studio album titled SOMERAARDE, by accomplished musician Joshua na die Reën, was released on Friday, 12 April 2019 and hit the No. 1 position on the SA iTunes chart over the weekend!

This albums is available on all digital platforms here: www.jndr.co.za/itunes

“The title of my new album is SOMERAARDE. It is based on the titular track I wrote for my brother Pierre. Since I can remember, his hope for the world has been that everyone would have enough to survive and that there would be peace. That people will be able to discover their full potential. I realized that you are only able to find that place within yourself, and if it had a name mine would have been called SOMERAARDE,” he says.

The musician, who is known for his soothing velvety voice, has produced this latest release himself. He went to a lot of effort to seamlessly interweave the finest melodies and lyrics with an interesting combination of contemporary and pop sounds to ensure a very striking end result.

“I have learned a lot during the recording process. On this journey, I met people who contributed so much more than what was expected of them… Ewald Jansen van Rensburg did the sound mixing and it was one of the most effortless collaborations of my life. It was nice to be able to trust someone so completely with what they were doing. Andy Maritz did the drum production and I often tell him that he saved the album,” he says.

Unlike the previous album, Die Wêreld Binne My, which mostly focused on the world inside of everyone listening to it, his third studio album encourages listeners to find peace within themselves. The genre is still Stadium Rock, but beyond the distinctive contemporary style, there are also interesting pop elements in some of the songs that add to the brand new sound he wanted to create.

Eleven original tracks, one of which (Vlieërs) is a duet with upcoming star Liani Reynolds, will guide fans through a spectrum of various human emotions and promise to keep them captivated from beginning to end and speak directly to the heart. The radio version of the hit Soos In Nou also appears as a bonus track on the album.

Although he does not want to choose a favourite, he thinks that listeners will definitely resonate with the song, Branders, which is also a track close to his own heart: “As we grow older, we tend to live for December breaks. So when I sat on the beach during December 2017, looking at the waves, I realized that they already knew everything about me. After all, I often pour out my heart to them. The people close to me are also like these waves that carry my secrets in their hearts.”

Soos In Nou is the first release taken from his self-produced studio album and is currently climbing the radio charts nationwide.

The single, written by the musician himself, was inspired by his philosophical nature and is about taking notice of the signs on the path of life, which indicate that change is needed, as well as the realization that you have to let go of the things that are holding you back. “Sometimes I experience life very intensely. When I am happy I feel really happy, but when I feel down, I tend to struggle to make sense of things. Somehow, in those times, I dig through the topsoil of my soul and am able to identify what lies beneath it,” he explains. A music video of this emotional track, will also be available soon.

Joshua na die Reën has been captivating audiences since his debut album, Joshua na die Reën, was released in 2014. Since then, he has won several awards, including various Ghoema Awards (Joshua na die Reën), a Huisgenoot Tempo, a SAMA (Die Wêreld Binne My) and a Woordfees prize. The artist has also written theme songs for movies like the box office hits Vir Altyd and Ballade vir ’n Enkeling (Voshaarnooi).

Aside from Huisgenoot Skouspel and Gospel is Groot, this versatile star has also shared the stage with big names like Elvis Blue, Jak de Priester, Amanda Strydom, Laurika Rauch, Richard van der Westhuizen, Die Heuwels Fantasties and more.

Joshua na die Reën still has many plans for the future, which includes lots of music, special projects and performances, an overseas tour and more theme songs for movies. His hope is that his music and lyrics will help people to experience those emotions that they have forgotten about and that it will also serve as a reminder that it is a good thing to have those feelings, because it is the only way that you can truly find peace.

With SOMERAARDE’s meticulous composition and soulful content, he not only exceeds his latest goal but also strengthens his place as a musician in the industry. His latest release promises to touch listeners’ hearts and will be an asset to any album collection.

TRACKS ON THE ALBUM

  • Soos in Nou
  • Sterrenet
  • Someraarde
  • Wandel
  • Vlieërs (duet with Liani Reynders)
  • Branders
  • Chamonix
  • Soos die Wind
  • Suiderkruis
  • Sweef
  • Onbekende Reis

*Soos in Nou – Radio edit

Ghoema Nominated Group Adam Releases New Music Video

The popular group, ADAM, who just got nominated for a Ghoema award in the Best Album by a duo or group category, have released a music video for their most recent single, Iets In Die Water.

The video was shot on location, with scenes taken at Hugo Ludik’s studio in Roodepoort and Follicle Hair in Pretoria. The music video was directed by the groups’s own Kyle Grant and produced by RM Productions.

“The video is a combination of ADAM having fun while recording the song in-studio with a few beautiful girls playing with balloons, celebrating how beautiful South African girls are. Samantha Leonard from The Voice SA 2017, also gave input with directing the video,” explains Kyle.

“So many beauty pageants have been won by South African girls and with ADAM touring all over the country, we realised that South Africa really has the prettiest girls. The only explanation we have for this, is that there must be something in the water,” Hugo added.

Iets in die Water is available on ADAM’s new album, Bewe, that was released during 2018.

The ADAM group consists of Hugo Ludik, Reynardt Hugo and Kyle Grant.

The 2019 kykNET Ghoema awards is one of the music industry’s biggest and most glamorous events. The Ghoema Awards will be taking place on 17 April 2019 at the breathtaking Sun Arena at Time Square Casino in Pretoria. Tickets are available from Computicket.

Q&A With Walton Goggins (Nathan Miller) Of Fox’s ‘Deep State’

Pictured: Walton Goggins as Nathan Miller in DEEP STATE
© Fox Networks Group, Europe & Africa

Tell us about Nathan Miller and Season Two?

Nathan Miller is a very interesting guy. He’s a ‘fixer’ for the deep state. He comes from a CIA background and has spent his entire career in counterintelligence. Those skills are very useful to people who are trying to manipulate, or move the chess pieces around the board in order to get what they need. Nathan Miller is a very important tool for the deep state.

Do you think Nathan Miller is a good guy or a bad guy?

I think that Nathan Miller is a person who believes that he’s doing the right thing. I think that he is a man who believes in country, and that his country should come first. I think there are a lot of people that work in the shadows of governments that have the same outlook as he does. Nathan Miller is a person who protects our interests even though, at times, it is at the expense of our liberal values and that’s a very complicated place to be in the world. He’s also a loving father and husband. He loves his family as much as he loves his country but sometimes he is asked to do things in his work that are at great odds with who he sees himself to be in his personal life.

Do the two worlds get a little bit blurry for Nathan?

Yes. Nathan Miller is a person that can bring down kings but has a hard time keeping his marriage together. These are very powerful people that move in shadow economies and shadow politics, trying to protect the interest of their country and their constituents. Sometimes their constituents come before country, but in the head of Nathan Miller, I think that there are moments where those interests align.

Is he a bad guy? It depends on who you ask. It depends on who benefits from the decisions that he makes, and the actions that he takes. The way that Matthew Parkhill, our creator, has constructed this story, nothing and no one is black and white.

Do you and your character, Nathan Miller, have things in common?

We both like nice suits. Walton Goggins and Nathan Miller both like to dress up. He has a style. It’s not my style, but it’s pretty close. I understand him. I understand his level of pain, and his joys and sorrows, his victories and defeats.

You’re playing two different timelines which forces the audience to really pay attention. How do you, as an actor, keep those two storylines clear in your own head?

You just have to read and reread the script every day before you come to work to really understand where you are. It’s so exciting but you have to keep on your toes!

Tell us about the collaboration you have with Matthew Parkhill?

I’m always asking questions, poking holes, so I can better understand what Matthew wants and what is right for the character. I’m saying to myself on a moment to moment basis, what are we saying right now? What do we want the audience to feel? What note are we playing?

There were a number of books that Matthew turned me on to when I took this job. One was called ‘The Way of the Knife,’ and another was called ‘The Looting Machine,’ about the pillaging of minerals in Africa. I didn’t know what had been going on in this region of Africa since World War II. I didn’t truly understand that, but now I do thanks to Matthew. Matthew has woven a tale that explores all of it.

What’s it like being both the star and an executive producer on the show?

I take both positions, executive producer and leading actor, very seriously. One moment you’re behind the camera, and then the next you’re in front of the camera. As an executive producer, I’m constantly thinking, how can I help the other producers and department heads? How can I make their jobs easier? You also want the crew to feel like they’re making something worthy of their time. I think that’s only achievable if you, as an actor or as an executive producer, sincerely believe that for yourself.

This crew has all worked together before on the first season, and you’ve come in at the beginning of the second season. What was that like? What’s your experience been like with this crew?

It’s so intimidating and daunting to step into a machine that has already made one full revolution, and also to be the only American in the bunch. The Brits are amazing actors, and so you don’t want to be the one to drop the ball. All I could do was to be as well prepared as possible. Also, everybody has opened their arms and invited me in. It’s been wonderful being invited into this close knit family. Mark Strong was the lead in season one, and I’ve been a fan of Mark’s for such a long time. He’s such a good actor and to try to fill his shoes would be foolish. So I say to myself, well, okay, I’m not Mark Strong but I’m Walton Goggins, and it is going to be by its very nature, different. I wanted to see what it would be like with an American in this situation. We see the world a certain way, and sometimes that’s very similar to a European aesthetic, and sometimes it is quite different! The four things that attracted me to this show were the writing by Mr Parkhill, the photography, the actors, and last but not least, South Africa. It is one of my favourite countries on the planet. I just fell in love with the place and its people. It’s also got some of the best crews working in the business. That’s why people are coming here to tell their stories.

Are you politically aware, politically concerned or politically active? Where are you in that spectrum and has it changed at all since you started working on the show?

I’m politically aware; I’m politically concerned; I’m politically active, but I don’t speak about politics publicly. I try to express what I feel about the world through my work, and through the choices that I make when I’m given those opportunities. However I’m not, by nature, a conspiracy theorist. I do think that we are living in very dangerous times, and the world is going through a change that we’re all trying to figure out.

Do you believe there is a deep state?

I personally vacillate between believing in the deep state and not believing in the deep state. I don’t think that there is a boardroom of four or five people that control the world, but maybe there’s a group of a 1,000 people that are able, by how big their corporations are, through lobbyists, sway policy.

Read more about Deep State season 2

Q&A with Joe Dempsie (Harry Clarke)

Q&A With Karima McAdams (Leyla Toumi)

Q&A With Matthew Parkhill (Co-Creator, Writer, Showrunner, Director – Eps 1, 2, 7, 8)

DEEP STATE 2 will broadcast on FOX Africa on Wednesdays at 20:45 CAT, from 15 May.

‘An Act Of Defiance’ – Bram Fischer’s Fight To Save Nelson Mandela From The Gallows

Nelson Mandela is a global icon of the late 20th and early 21st centuries. But this might not have been if it were not for the heroic fight to save Mandela’s life by a legal team led by an Afrikaner revolutionary, Bram Fischer. This is the story of how Mandela was saved from the death penalty in the Rivonia trial of 1963.

On a winter’s day, July 1963 the police raid a farm in Rivonia on the outskirts of Johannesburg. Nine black and white leaders of the banned ANC and “Umkhonto we Sizwe” (the Spear of the Nation) are arrested. And a tenth member, arrested earlier is added to the group of nine, Nelson Mandela.

More than anything the Apartheid regime wanted to sentence freedom fighters to death: not only as a warning to their fellow activists but also to get rid of some of Apartheids’s most feared enemies; in essense to decapitate the liberation movement.

When the families of the suspects try to find a lawyer to defend the accused, the potential candidates are afraid or unwilling to accept the mandate. Widely respected legal mind Bram Fischer also hesitates. He is the Dean of the Bar Association, counsel for major mining magnates and scion of a prominent Afrikaans family.

But Bram hesitates for other reasons: he has a secret that only a few people and his wife, Molly Fischer, know. Bram should have been the eleventh accused, and it was only by chance that he was not present at the farm in Rivonia when his fellow activists were arrested.

He decides to take on the defence. During the trial Bram not only has to unravel the manipulated evidence by the prosecutor, and expose bribed or tortured witnesses, he must also protect himself from detection by witnesses.

During the trial Bram sees more and more reasons to move away from his principles of nonviolence, and becomes prepared to support violent acts of sabotage and the armed uprising of the people. The death penalty for the accused could be the spark igniting the powder keg, and parallel to the trial Bram is fervently trying to organise the underground resistance.

Then the secret police uncover Bram’s double role and the State Attorney is forced by the Minister of Justice, Balthazar Vorster, to play this card. Bram has a moral dilemma: does he defend his clients, or take care of the welfare and safety of his family? And so the dramatic story unfolds – the bid to save Mandela and fellow accused from the gallows by a man described by Mandela as follows:

“Bram was a courageous man who followed the most difficult course any person could choose to follow. He challenged his own people because he felt that what they were doing was morally wrong. As an Afrikaner whose conscience forced him to reject his own heritage and be ostracised by his own people, he showed a level of courage and sacrifice that was in a class by itself.”

The film stars Peter Paul Muller(Alles is Liefde, Gooische Vrowen) as Bram Fischer, Sello Motloung (The #1 Ladies’ Detective Agency, Generations) as Nelson Mandela, Antoinette Louw (Die Laaste Tango, Swartwater), Izel Bezuidenhout (Dis Ek, Anna, Agent 2000: Die Laksman), Morne Visser (Dis Ek, Anna, The Forgiven).

Directed by Jean Van De Velde, ‘An Act of Defiance’ (‘Die Storie Van Bram Fischer’), won the “2017 Movies that Matter Film Festival – Audience Award” in the Hague, Netherlands.

‘An Act of Defiance’ was the opening film in the ‘Cape Town International Market & Film Festival (2017) and has achieved the following awards from various festivals:

  • 2017 Dutch Film Awards – Best Actor
  • 2017 Dutch Film Awards – Best Screenplay
  • 2017 Cape Town Film Festival – Best Actress
  • 2017 Cape Town Film Festival – Best Screenplay
  • 2017 Mill Valley Film Festival – Golden Audience Award
  • 2017 Movies that Matter Film Festival – Audience Award

The film’s partners include Richard Claus & Co, Spier Films and Cinema Management Group. It is a South African-Dutch co-production.

With thanks and recognition to the following producers:

Richard Claus (Producer – Richard Claus & Co. Netherlands),
Michael Auret (Producer – Spier Films, South Africa),
Hugh Rogers (Producer – Netherlands)
Patricia Van Heerden (Co-Producer – Spier Films, South Africa)
Dr. Lwazi Manzi (Associate Producer – Spier Films, South Africa)

‘An Act of Defiance’ is distributed in South Africa by Indigenous Film Distribution.

Q&A With Joe Dempsie (Harry Clarke) Of Fox’s ‘Deep State’

Pictured: Joe Dempsie as Harry Clarke in DEEP STATE.
© Fox Networks Group, Europe & Africa

Can you tell us what it is about Leyla and Harry that keeps drawing them back together?

I think for Harry what it is that draws him back to Leyla is the crux of Season 2, for him. When we see him at the start of Season 2, he’s living in Bamako, in Mali. He’s working for a private security firm. After the events at the end of Season 1, he’s checked out. He’s sold out and he’s cashing in and he’s living in this quite gauche, ostentatious villa, which isn’t really him. He really is not interested in anything.

Then Leyla shows up and says we have a responsibility to help Aicha (portrayed by Lily Banda) out who is in trouble. She assumes Harry is going to go and join her on this mission but he’s not. He’s harbouring a lot of resentment towards her but against his better judgement he is dragged along on this wild goose chase to try and recover Aicha and it’s all because of Leyla.

Speaking of Leyla, she is a powerful force throughout this show. How does that affect Harry’s journey?

It’s an obvious thing to say, because woman are over half the population, but I think it’s essential in all stories that women are present, prominent, and important. DEEP STATE is an example of that. In terms of Harry’s journey through the show, his key emotional touchstones are women. The reality is, if you watch the show closely, Harry spends most of his time getting saved by Leyla. He would have been dead about four times if it wasn’t for her.

Can you summarise Season 1 and your character for us?

Season 1 was a journey through the world of geopolitics and espionage. At the start Harry was fairly new to the game. The show explored who is really pulling the strings and the uneasy relationship between big business and geopolitics. For Harry, the curtain was pulled back and he saw how things really work. I think it shook him to his core. Along the way he was reunited with his estranged father.

Harry is a young man trying to find his way through life and trying to make sense of the world. He has a few hang-ups. He feels like he’s been abandoned by the people that he loves and that he’s formed attachments with. He becomes disillusioned with the world that he had chosen to inhabit.

Season 2 picks up where that left off. It’s the aftermath but because we have this split timeline, you get to go back to before Season 1, where Harry and Leyla meet for the first time and we’re being propelled along at breakneck speed by this unfolding narrative.

Is it difficult playing these two different time periods. Do you get confused?

Playing the two different timelines is trickier in the lead up to a day’s filming than it is on the day. I think by the time you get on set you’ve made sure that you know where you are within the story. The show forces the viewer to keep up with it. It forces a viewer to pay attention and it’s the same for the actors. The split timeline, our past narrative, rather than being confusing to watch, will make everything make much more sense. The past informs the present.

Can you talk about working on a second season with the showrunner, Matthew Parkhill.

I so enjoy working with him. From day one I could just tell how passionate he was about this. The energy that he brings to set everyday as a director is mind boggling. He knows the story inside out. It’s thoroughly, thoroughly researched. Any crew member will tell you that he is the captain of the ship, but he is so aware of what a team effort it requires to make a show like this. Everyone just loves working for him. He is our fearless leader and we’ll follow him pretty much anywhere he wants to take us.

A lot of the crew are the same people that you had last season. That is a testament to the fact that you all not only enjoy working together but that you have a respect for each other, because you’ve all come back.

Yes, that’s testament to Matthew and to the production company Endor and to the atmosphere that they have created. People wanted to come back and do Season 2. Season 1 wasn’t easy. It wasn’t a holiday. It was a hard slog, but everyone still wanted to come back for more.

Have you become more politically aware by doing this show?

I think that’s one of the elements of DEEP STATE that I really dig. I learn new things with every script I open that Matthew’s written.

Do you see any parallels between the show and revelations we hear every day in the news?

Yes there are parallels. The difficulty of making a show like this in the current climate, is how do you make political drama more enthralling or more shocking, more revelatory than just turning on the BBC or CNN? You want to surprise people. You want to shock people and real life is currently more shocking than some drama shows.

Do you believe there is a deep state?

It’s a tricky question to answer. I think conspiracy theories becoming
mainstream are a very dangerous thing because they can be used to deflect attention from other crimes and injustices that governments may be carrying out.

How much of yourself do you bring to Harry Clarke? Do you see any similarities between the two of you?

I think Harry and I are similar in a few ways. We can both be very stubborn. I share his pride. I share, at times, his sense of hopelessness that we see at the beginning of Season 2. I also think we share a moral compass. We both have a yearning for truth and justice. No matter how jaded I can get, my drive will always eventually win out and I will find a way to make a difference, just like Harry.

In preparing for the role, did you talk to any experts or do any research?

In our stunt team from last year, there were a few ex-special forces, and they spent quite a bit of time with us before we started shooting, getting us familiar with the moves. If you’re playing someone who is highly trained physically, you’ve only got a matter of days to make things that should be second nature to your character, look second nature. That’s something that I don’t know about and that I needed to be taught.

I didn’t really feel like I needed to mime anyone else’s brain, or talk to someone. When we meet Harry in Season 1 he is relatively new, as he is in the past timeline for Season 2. I don’t feel like he’s seen loads of terrible things at that point. The audience are seeing the world through Harry’s eyes a lot of the time. He is the young idealist. I can just experience all that with him.

If you could play any other character in the show, who would it be?

I think I would pick Aminata Sissoko! I think I would love to rock some of those African prints she wears. She’s sassy!

I would also love to play a character like Nathan Miller because he becomes something of the adversary of Harry and Leyla. He’s not the bad guy. The lines between good and bad are often blurred for him. Nathan is ‘good men do bad things’ and I think that’s fascinating.

Have you had a favourite scene that you’ve shot or are you looking forward to one that you are going to shoot?

I really like the scene on the tarmac at Bamako airport in episode 4. Harry has been biting his tongue for four episodes and he finally just explodes and it was nice to play that.

Read more about Deep State season 2

Q&A with Walton Goggins (Nathan Miller)

Q&A With Karima McAdams (Leyla Toumi)

Q&A With Matthew Parkhill (Co-Creator, Writer, Showrunner, Director – Eps 1, 2, 7, 8)

DEEP STATE 2 will broadcast on FOX Africa on Wednesdays at 20:45 CAT, from 15 May.

Season Two Of Fox’s Espionage Thriller ‘Deep State’ To Debut Globally In 2019

FOX reveals trailer and first look photos for anticipated second season, which stars
Walton Goggins, Joe Dempsie, Karima McAdams, Anastasia Griffith, Alistair Petrie, Victoria Hamilton, Alexander Siddig, Lily Banda and Zainab Jah

Showrunner, Writer and Director Matthew Parkhill helms new action-driven political drama. Co-created by Matthew Parkhill and Simon Maxwell, with Joss Agnew also directing. Executive Produced by Emmy→ Award Winner Hilary Bevan Jones.

Pictured: (L-R) Joe Dempsie as Harry Clarke and Karima McAdams as Leyla Toumi in DEEP STATE.

Fox Networks Group (FNG) Europe & Africa announced today DEEP STATE season two will air globally in 2019. Season one was the first regional scripted commission for the broadcaster, which doubled the primetime average audience on FOX across Europe and Africa. It was also the most viewed show on premium network EPIX, its home in the US. DEEP STATE 2 will broadcast on FOX Africa on Wednesdays at 20:45 CAT, from 15 May.

A teaser trailer and first look photos from the new season reveal fresh details for the espionage thriller, which expands the deep state universe and introduces a range of new characters, led by Critics’ Choice Winner and Emmy→-nominated actor, Walton Goggins (Ant-Man and the Wasp, Tomb Raider).

The second season will delve deeper into the murky and political world of the deep state. Having failed in the Middle East, those powers are now turning their attention to sub-Saharan Africa and the scramble to plunder its natural resources. This is the first dirty war over clean energy. The series will also explore the origin stories of some of our favourite characters from season one alongside witnessing the fall of a hero and orchestrating the making of a terrorist in the eyes of the West.

Alongside Walton Goggins, season two features returning cast, Joe Dempsie (Game of Thrones, Skins), Karima McAdams (Fearless, Vikings), Alistair Petrie (Sex Education, The Night Manager) and Anastasia Griffith (Damages, Once Upon a Time). Rounding out the ensemble are new cast members, Victoria Hamilton (The Crown, Doctor Foster), Alexander Siddig (The Spy, Gotham) Lily Banda (The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind) and Zainab Jah (Elementary, Homeland).

DEEP STATE co-creator, writer, showrunner and director Matthew Parkhill said: “My ambition for DEEP STATE was to create an intelligent, cinematic and political thriller; a modern-day story that reflects the turbulent times we are all living in. This year, we build on the established worlds of London and Washington from season one, and take our audience further behind the curtain of the deep state, introducing new characters and new territories – notably Mali and the epic landscape of the Sahara Desert, the land of the Tuareg people. A new frontier for the deep state, as it seeks ever greater profits from orchestrated and curated chaos. The lines between the political and emotional lives of each character continue to blur and we are thrilled to be telling this new story with such a diverse and talented cast.”

Sara Johnson, VP, Scripted, FNG Europe & Africa and Executive Producer said: “Season One was a brilliant introduction to DEEP STATE, and we could not have been more thrilled with the response. We are excited to return to this contemporary drama brand, which blends action and political intrigue with a strong moral core, to tell a complex story in a compelling way”.

Hilary Bevan Jones, Executive Producer with Endor Productions, a Red Arrow Studios Company, said: “It’s great to build on the ambitions and success of DEEP STATE. Ranging from action packed desert sequences to emotionally charged stories we get to build on season one and grow an even bigger audience with season two. I have massive admiration for Matthew Parkhill and his team of writers, Producer Paul Frift and FNG Europe & Africa and the quality of their content.”

Evert Van Der Veer, Vice President and General Manager, Fox Networks Group Africa said: “We can’t wait to broadcast DEEP STATE 2 to African audiences, even more so given that parts of it were filmed right here in South Africa. This intriguing and fascinating espionage thriller is sure to capture the imagination with its smart storylines, played out by a stellar cast”.

“There is another government concealed behind the one that is visible at either end of Pennsylvania Avenue, a hybrid entity of public and private institution running the country.”
– Essay: ‘ Anatomy of the Deep State’ by Mike Lofgren,
American author and 28-year veteran Republican US Congressional Aide –

Pictured: Lily Banda as Aicha Konate in DEEP STATE.

As Season Two opens, we find Harry Clarke (Dempsie) and Leyla Toumi (McAdams) still reeling from the fall out of Season One’s debacle in Tehran. Harry has taken himself out of active duty completely and it is only at the insistence of Leyla, that he is dragged back into the deeply secretive and deadly dangerous world of the deep state.

The deep state is on the threshold of reaping enormous rewards from a US Government deal that is being brokered with Mali, a sub-Saharan country replete in vast natural resources hugely valuable to the Western World’s insatiable appetite for technological advancement. The deal is suddenly plunged into jeopardy when three US special forces operatives and a Malian translator are ambushed and supposedly killed.

The deep state hastily deploys Nathan Miller (Goggins), an ex-CIA operative, to ensure, at any cost, the deal is completed, but his actions are thwarted when the Malian translator, Aïcha Konaté (Banda) contacts Leyla and informs her of the actual events surrounding her supposed death. Complicating matters for Miller are Meaghan Sullivan (Hamilton), a Republican Senator from Ohio, with an insatiable appetite for the uncovering the truth about the deep state and Aminata Sissoko (Jah), a senior advisor to the Malian President who is the deep state’s main obstacle in gaining a foothold in her country. A past storyline reconnects with last season’s George White (Petrie), a senior MI6 agent and Amanda Jones (Griffith), a CIA operative and the introduction of Issouf Al Moctar (Siddig), a Tuareg leader of an armed independence group. From here on in, viewers are taken on another extraordinary, helter-skelter journey in which Harry and Leyla must do everything in their power to stop the insidious advancement of the malignant network that is known as the deep state.

Matthew Parkhill (Rogue) is executive producer, co-creator, writer, director and showrunner with Emmy-award winning powerhouse producer Hilary Bevan Jones (Roald Dahl’s Esio Trot, State of Play, The Escape Artist) as executive producer. Director Joss Agnew (Poldark, Mr Selfridge) and BAFTA Award winning producer Paul Frift (Victoria, Room at the Top), both joined the team for the second season. Simon Maxwell (American Odyssey), is co-creator writer and executive producer. Rounding out the executive producing team are Walton Goggins, Alan Greenspan, and Helen Flint with Sara Johnson for Fox Networks Group, Europe & Africa. Matthew Parkhill heads the writing team of Chris Dunlop, Joshua St Johnson, Simon Maxwell and Steve Thompson.

Pictured: Victoria Hamilton as Senator Meaghan Sullivan in DEEP STATE.

The creative team includes directors of photography Nic Lawson and Nick Dance, costume designer Rachel Walsh, hair and make-up designer Amy Stewart, production designer, Steve Summersgill, and line producer Janine Van Assen. The show’s score was composed by Harry Escott, Francesco Reidy and Andrew Perry serve as 1st Assistant Directors, Supervising Editor is Phil Hookway, with David Barrett as Editor, and casting for both series of DEEP STATE was led by Kelly Valentine Hendry.

Fox Networks Group Content Distribution hold exclusive global distribution rights for the series, working in partnership with FNG Europe & Africa. Across the region, FNG Europe & Africa operates 154 channels as well as numerous digital services, from 25 offices, broadcasting in over 50 countries. Through genre defining channel brands FOX, FOX Sports and National Geographic, FNG Europe & Africa is watched by over 250 million viewers, 40% of the population, in 150 million households making it the pan-regional leader for entertainment, factual and sports programming*.

Q&A with Joe Dempsie (Harry Clarke)

Q&A with Walton Goggins (Nathan Miller)

Q&A With Karima McAdams (Leyla Toumi)

Q&A With Matthew Parkhill (Co-Creator, Writer, Showrunner, Director – Eps 1, 2, 7, 8)

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