By Motlagae Konyana
The rom-com Love Lives Here tells a story of Zinhle Malinga, played by Thando Thabethe, who is on a quest for love and a prince charming to complete her Cinderella life. Set in KZN, Love Lives Here finds Zinhle ready to settle down but yet to find a man who wants the same thing as her and has resigned to putting her search for love on hold.
What are the similarities, if any, between you and the character, Zinhle Malinga, in how you approach love and relationships?
I think the similarities in how we both view love is that we both really love love! And we’re both about finding someone you can share your life with and eventually marrying that person. So we’re both hopeless romantics.
There’s a moment in the Love Lives Here trailer where your character’s mother says “you have options.” When was the first time you realised that as a young black woman?
Similar to Zinhle, we were both raised by strong black women, my mom has always taught to never limit myself and to know that there is never a reason to settle for less, whether in relationships or career.
Why do you think women tend to go for the not-so boring and consistent guy?
I think there’s an allure about a bad boy, I think it’s the thrill of the game and the mystery that we sometimes seek. That obviously can be very dangerous for our hearts, at the end of the day it’s about going for what truly makes you happy.
What have you learnt about yourself when you were shooting the movie?
I learned that Love Liveswith self first before anyone else. The secret to finding a partner is loving yourself first, as that will help you realise what you deserve.
So your character’s perceptions of a relationship in her stories is very Cinderella and fairytale-like, how does the heart break impact Zinhle’s writing career?
I think she was broken, but she didn’t let that heartbreak affect her work and her work ethic. Which is something I can truly relate to. Yes, do cry, yes, do mourn the relationship, but don’t let it affect your work, if anything, put more energy into your work.
One of Zinhle’s love interests, played by Lungile Radu, seems to be in a single parent home Is it difficult to date a man who doesn’t believe in marriage or doesn’t have a father figure?
No. I think people are complicated, and relationships are complicated. We all have our baggage that we bring into relationships, it boils down to deciding on the baggage your willing to tolerate.
At this point in your life regarding relationships what would you not comprise on?
I would not compromise on mutual respect and being treated like the queen I am, cause I know I will also reciprocate that.
Thabethe stars in Love Lives Here, alongside fellow Mzansi stars, Lungile Radu, Nomalanga Shozi, Zola Nombona, Andile Gumbi, Motlatsi Mafatshe, Pule Welch and Kabi Gethaiga.
Love Lives Here opens at the box office on 5 April 2019