July 12, 2021 - By AnumitaBagchi
Marco and Erica play the charismatic hosts to Tendaiishe Chitima
In the exciting 44th episode of Between 2 Italians’ 5th season, Marco and Erica play the charismatic hosts to Tendaiishe Chitima, the star of the groundbreaking new film, Cook Off. Tendaiishe is a Zimbabwean actress with whom Marco and Erica conduct a hilarious, yet engaging interview, as they are the very first people to conduct an interview over Instagram Live with the Cook Off star!
Cook Off was filmed back in 2017, as Tendaiishe’s first ever feature-length film of her career, amid the political strife of the end of Robert Mugabe’s rule. Despite this, the film is a great testament to the community efforts and perseverance that went into making it, as Tendaiishe explains to Marco and Erica. She describes some of the difficulties the cast and crew experienced during filming, from being wrapped in blankets on set due to the winter cold, to the riots going on around them as they worked. Despite this, Cook Off has made quite the splash in the film industry, both in Zimbabwe and beyond, winning six prestigious awards and being nominated for two more! The movie has also been featured on sites such as the Guardian, BBC, and Stylist.
Tendaiishe tells Marco and Erica that Zimbabwe’s film industry is still growing, and her film is certainly proof of that, as it is the very first Zimbabwean film to appear on the streaming giant Netflix, which is truly an incredible achievement! The cast of the movie is entirely made up of Zimbabwean actors, an important factor to its authentic feel, which is also added to by the beautiful soundtrack, also created by Zimbabwean musicians. In this interview, Tendaiishe describes Cook Off as a romantic comedy about “the struggle to dream [and]… to fulfill your dreams… against all odds”, a sentiment which she says reflects the difficult situation in which they were filming, and the inspirational way in which the cast and crew supported one another and also found support from many external places. In the interview, it is clear to see how much this film means to its star actress, as its heartwarming plot and relationships bring emotion and representation to both its cast and its audience.
While Cook Off focuses on Tendaiishe’s character Anesa competing in a cooking competition, food plays a big part in the actress’ life off screen too. She credits her brother, who is a chef, as a big inspiration to her, and fondly recalls the amazing pasta she ate in Rome as one of her favourite culinary experiences. Tendaiishe and Erica also bond over (wait for it…) ravioli! To find out more about Tendaiishe’s favourite foods and dating life, Zimbabwean cuisine, the wonderful wildlife of South Africa, or how fast Marco runs to catch London buses, make sure you watch the full episode of Between 2 Italians. Get ready to laugh out loud and really engage with the wonderful Tendaiishe Chitima through Marco and Erica’s exciting interview!