Atandwa Kani on 'influencer actors': 'I wish I knew that all I needed was to shake my a**'

03 November 2020 - 12:30 By Masego Seemela
Atandwa Kani talks about his struggles of wanting to be a household name.
Atandwa Kani talks about his struggles of wanting to be a household name.
Image: John Lamparski/Getty Images

Professional actor Atandwa Kani who has been in the industry for more than a decade has thrown massive jabs at “influencer actors” who, according to him, just shook their bootees to get a foot in the door.  

He took to Twitter and shared how he struggled to get where he was today claiming it seemed quite easy for “influencers and celebrities” who get to climb the ladder way quicker than those who work hard in the industry.

Just days ago Atandwa also revealed what his definition of an “artist” was.

Artists are on this earth to entertain, educate, revolutionise, expose and speak truth to power. To rehabilitate nations, provide escapism and to give anyone who watches, a moment of rest and peace. Not to amuse you through our personal struggles. We have to draw the line.”

In May, Atandwa lifted the lid on what it took for him to live out his acting dream in America.

With most parts of the world under lockdown and self-isolating at home due to the coronavirus pandemic, Atandwa went on a young Instagram LIVE on Artists Corner TV with fellow actor Thapelo Mokoena sharing more insight on how he was pushing his acting dream in the US.  

“I've always had the dream to come to New York because of the theatre, it's in the US, there are a lot more opportunities. So, I started availing myself more on international work.”

Atandwa added he had to be a part of many productions to get his face known in the international acting industry.  

“We did Young Leonardo which is a BBC production, we did Life Is Wild together Thaps, We did Book Of Negros with Cuba Gooding Jr, Young Mandela ... I shot Black Panther in Atlanta while I was still living in SA.

“So, I had to have that body of work for when I got here [so] people would know a little bit about me ... cause they haven't seen me before, I had to start from scratch. It was more like a rebirth of an actor.”