The Estate, a South African telenovela broadcasted on the struggling public broadcaster’s SABC3 channel, is taking a break starting next week. The telenovela produced by Clive Morris Productions is going off-air for more than two months.
The Estate, launched in April 2021, revolves around two rich and poor communities of an exclusive housing development struggle with land and identity, corruption, patronage, and money issues.
The show has since been troubled by production changes and challenges on the public broadcaster’s SABC3 channel, where it was meant to replace Isidingo but had little marketing, publicity or fanbase.
The show has since been struggling to attract attention, and with the ratings not getting any better, the public broadcaster decided to broadcast the first season of the show during prime time on sister channel, SABC1, in their attempt to gain more viewers for the second season on SABC3.
In February, the show only managed to pull 296 682 viewers during primetime (19:00), a decrease from January’s 312 382 viewers, making the production break unquestionable.
The Estate premiered on SABC3 with depressing ratings that kept lowering. This was largely due to eTV’s House of Zwide’s success in the same 19:00 timeslot.
The cast and crew of The Estate were reportedly not paid for months last year, while producers made empty promises of payment.
The producers of the show, Clive Morris Productions, informed the cast and crew last year that their salaries could not be paid because of a “payment delay from the public broadcaster”, but the SABC mentioned that payment was made to the production company.
The SABC confirmed that the show was taking a production break, with the last episode of the season airing on Friday, 15 April.
The third season of The Estate is said to begin in July.
The Estate’s timeslot will be replaced by the SABC1 series Family Secrets re-run starring Khanyi Mbau, Katlego Danke, Vusi Kunene, and Robert Whitehead.