Kim Engelbrecht’s latest series, ‘Reyka’, is described as ‘highly gripping and will leave you at the edge of your seat’.
Actress Kim Engelbrecht has been lauded for her recent debut as the lead character in M-Net’s new crime drama, Reyka.
Reyka – which is set in the cane fields of KwaZulu-Natal – premiered on M-Net this past and tells the story of Reyka Gema (Engelbrecht), a flawed criminal profiler. Haunted by her past because she was abducted as a child during the first democratic elections in 1994, while her mother Elsa (Anna-Mart van der Merwe), was working as a photographer for a local newspaper.
Her abductor, Speelman, played by Game of Thrones star Ian Glen is soon to be released on parole.
According to IOL, many people may remember Engelbrecht from the popular soapie Isidingo, but after that international doors opened for her like a role in Dominion and the Gavin Hood directed thriller, Eye in the Sky, which also starred Dame Helen Mirren. It has been a decade of Engelbrecht actively courting and winning over Hollywood. Now, she’s back home, starring in her first South African drama since SABC2’s Geraamtes in die Kas.
“I feel entirely self-fulfilled when I am on a set, reading a script, or trying to figure out a fascinating character. I have become good at designing a personality for these fictitious characters,“ she told the publication.
She says travelling the world to work on great projects and meeting and working with incredible people in the industry is also a big motivator.
“I always wanted a career that saw me working both locally and internationally. It excites me to have the ability to work in different accents and other geographical spaces. Forcing yourself out of your comfort zone is what actors do all the time. Breaking our glass ceiling is part of our job,” she said.
Reyka was created by Rohan Dickson, who also created M-Net’s groundbreaking The Wild in 2011.
Of her character, Engelbrecht said that Reyka is on the precipice of a new beginning in her personal life and dealing with her unthinkable, and very painful past.
“I was highly intrigued by the multi-faceted psychology of the character. Reyka is not just one thing – it is a procedural psychological cop drama as well as a complex family drama, while also being a convoluted love story. It was one of those scripts that I could not put down,” says Engelbrecht.
She reportedly had to study her character in great detail.
“It dealt with Reyka’s entire life, psychology, mannerisms, and human nature. I also drew on personal experiences, and the script allowed me to dig into the deepest parts of myself.
I loved working with directors Zee Ntuli (“Hard to Get”) and Catherine Cooke (“The Girl from St Agnes”) in creating this highly complex character,“ she said.
Engelbrecht referred to the series as “highly gripping and will leave you at the edge of your seat”.
“It is very well-acted by the entire ensemble. The story is dark and disturbing at times, and the subject matter is not for the faint of heart.
“Yet, the storyline is so realistic that you have no other option but to be absorbed into the world of KwaZulu-Natal with its breathtaking and sometimes eerie landscape,” she said.
Reyka boasts an all-star cast, which includes Leeanda Reddy, Thando Thabethe, Hamilton Dlamini, Kenneth Nkosi, Suraya Rose Santos and Iain Glen.
You can watch Reyka on Sundays at 20:00 on M-Net channel 101
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