ou could easily mistake him for his character Papa G in real life. The drip and swag go a long way for Papa, real name Darlington Michaels!
Being in the entertainment industry for 44 years, the OG is currently busy working on growing his Melisizwe Productions.
Darlington Michaels is best known for his starring role as flamboyant gangster Georgie “Papa G” Zamdela in the SABC3 soap opera Isidingo, since 1998.
Thursday, 12 March 2020 marked the end of Isidingo.
“Ja, it’s so sad, it is really so sad but anyway, it had to … I say that because I just feel like they lost direction. Isidingo had, I don’t know, maybe it was because of different writers that are here,” Papa G said as quoted by Times Live.
Darlington also spoke to the publication about how being paid less led him to make a “sudden” exit from the show in 2016, only for him to return after an “OK” settlement with the producers of the soapie.
Speaking to Bona early this year, Papa G said that he’s currently working on a production called Who’s To Blame, which will be tackling issues that the youth face, such as substance abuse and teenage pregnancy.
“We are currently touring schools in Gauteng to teach children how to deal with the pressures they face,” Papa G told the magazine.
In 2013, Papa G suffered from a stroke on a work trip to Cape Town.
“I had travelled with the cast of Isidingo when I fell ill. I spent three months at Groote Schuur Hospital recovering. I couldn’t sit up, walk or feed myself. Although I didn’t think I would make it, the nurses helped me get back on my feet. The stroke left me feeling fragile; my left leg hasn’t fully recovered, and I now use a walking stick. This further impacted my ability to work. So, I decided to reduce my time on Isidingo to focus on healing,” said Papa G as quoted by Bona Magazine.
He told the publication that his role on Isidingo solidified his career.
“In 1984, I wrote and starred in a play titled Survival. It was about the apartheid prison system and how it treated black prisoners. I felt that it was important to tell the story because of the things I would hear and witness from people who were in prison at the time. I went on to tour the country performing it. Due to the political nature of the play, I was arrested in Natalspruit, east of Johannesburg, where I spent three months in prison without trial. After my release, I went on to do more theatre work until 1985.
“I acted in a few small roles on television before landing the role of Georgie “Papa G” Zamdela on SABC 3 soapie, Isidingo, in 1997. My character was modelled after me – Papa G also spoke Tsotsi taal and wore expensive silk shirts and extravagant jewellery. Twenty years later, people still call me Papa G when I am out in public,” said Papa G.
Also thanks to @urbankreativeSA for reminding us that we have OG’s!