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The persistent actor with an unquenchable urge for film

Local actor Rantsatsi Mokeki

Jan. 5, 2021 3 min read

3 min read

RANTSATSI Bert Mokeki is a social worker who recently graduated from the National University of Lesotho (NUL), however, his true love is in film production, hence his unquenchable passion to become a famed international actor.

Narrating his story, the 24-year-old aspiring actor says: “I was in my second year at varsity when I discovered my passion for filmmaking and I pursued it after I graduated.”

He was recently nominated by the Film Sector Groundbreakers for an incubation programme purposed to groom him into all corners of the film industry for the duration of three years, to mainly become a producer and casting director.

He also plans to learn about film-marketing and all other avenues essential to become a successful filmmaker.

“This opportunity is going to help me upgrade and build on the knowledge that I already have as an actor and filmmaker. It will help me produce better films that will not only unearth local talent, but will also improve the financial aspect of acting among local actors.

“The plan is to ensure that all local actors and personnel involved in movie production finally earn a living from producing films. “And most importantly, I would then be able to contribute towards the development of the Lesotho film industry and the entire economy of the country,” he also says.

The young man who hails from Roma, Maseru says he had a most difficult time convincing his family to support his dream.

“They thought I was only wasting time and money. But film has always been my true love for as long as I can remember. In 2000, I talked to my father about a career in film-making and he told me that to be on television, I would have to be study drama or acting first.

“Although I never ended up studying any of those, my love for film never diminished. After I finished high school, my parents discouraged me from pursuing that dream, saying it would take me nowhere that is why I did social work at varsity instead.

“Because my love for acting grew too strong to ignore over the years, I decided to follow it any way,” he recalls.

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Mokeki says during his third year at NUL, he spent the entire time researching about acting and learning the trade on YouTube.

“I had a lot of practice and started auditioning whenever there was a chance. During my last year at varsity I got my first audition and landed a role in a movie. That was my breakthrough, after that first movie others came and several others followed,” he says.

In January last year, he got an offer to act as an extra in one of the three biggest television dramas in South Africa.

However, the COVID-19 pandemic hit and the lockdown that followed forced him to return to Lesotho, disrupting his acting plans.

“I believe if local actors could push for a better tomorrow, that will open the hearts and the minds of Basotho to support the film industry because it is an amazing industry that Basotho youth can follow,” he says.

He gets most of his inspiration from his favourite local actor and mentor Mpho Koaho who is currently based in Canada.

“He inspires and pushes me to become a better actor. His contribution towards my development as an actor is amazing and I am always grateful to him,” he says.

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