Jama’s death on Skeem Saamon was so intense that it crashed TVSA! Yes Jama lovers, your emotions literally crashed TVSA’s servers when you arrived in full force for the Skeem Saam teasers immediately after he died.
His death was unexpected by everyone. Everyone except theSkeem Saam writers who killed him before he lived.
Turns out the writers have known about his death for twoyears already, from before they even cast Oros Mampofu in the role.
TVSA spoke to Skeem Saam writer and publicist Bonga Percy Vilakazi who revealed that the character was specifically written to die.
He was brought in for a specific purpose when the show started working on the university storylines.
Bonga explains: “After we did our research as writers, just trying to find out more about varsity life and the things that people do, we decided to bring in someone that would be a sacrifitional lamb so to speak. Someone we could use as an example, so the decision was made way before Oros was cast, that this a character who is going to die.”
And he was supposed to die much sooner. He was initially supposed to be on the show for three or four months but the writers ended up liking Jama and Oros so much that he stayed for two years.
Also, the longer he stayed on the show, the more he meant to everyone – to both writers and viewers – so the show developed attachment issues which created divisions in the writer’s room.
Bonga takes us into the writer’s room…
“There was always division in the writer’s room and with our producers. Some would say ‘But guys, people love him but this is why we brought him, let’s not forget.” Then the other half would be like, ‘Yes, we know but not yet, not now,’ so there was always that division.
“When we eventually took the decision that ‘it’s time’, we were distraught. We were all so sad. When we watched the episode on Friday… I was probably watching it for the fourth time and the emotions were so real, as if I didn’t know it was going to happen. It was all so real to us as well.”
So what was the specific purpose of giving Jama life so he could die? It’s all about revealing a truth about life. We can’t spill what it is because it would be a spoiler but we can tell you that his death will ultimately make a strong statement.