The stars of the show (www.bbc.co.uk)
The first 13-episode series of “Being Mandela” stars Mandela’s granddaughters Zaziwe Dlamini-Manaway and Swati Dlamini, following the young women as they work to further the Mandela family legacy while also bringing up families in Johannesburg.
The iconic anti-apartheid activist will not star in the show, although his ex-wife, Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, does make appearances. The women claim Mandela loves watching the series, which has already been pre-filmed, noting that their grandparents hope only that the Mandela name is treated with “respect and integrity”.
“We get asked this question a lot, Is this not going to tarnish the name and is this not going to be bad for the name?” said Swati Dlamini in an interview in New York with Associated Press.
“But our grandparents have always said to us, this is our name too, and we can do what we think is best fitting with the name, as long as we treat it with respect and integrity,” she added.
The series features the granddaughters visiting Mandela’s prison cell on Robben Island, where he was held captive for 18 of the 27 years he spent in prison.
It also focuses on Swati Dlamini continuing her work on getting her grandmother’s prison diaries published, and the women along with their brothers launching a fashion line called “Long Walk to Freedom”, in a tribute to Mandela’s autobiography.
The series airs on Cozi TV - a US digital TV network owned by broadcaster NBC.