Thomas Gumede (born 6 February 1986; Age: 36 years old) is a South African actor, television host, producer, comedian, director, and entrepreneur best known for his roles in A Place Called Home, Bay Of Plenty, and Kedibone.
He has shared the screens with the best in South Africa and the world. He has come a long way from his days as an unknown face in a television commercial to become a household name in the entertainment industry. His passion, talents, and hard work over the years have won him two very prestigious awards in South Africa, an honor that most of his contemporaries can only wish for or dream about.
The father of one and loving husband-to-be began his transition to other roles in the entertainment industry more than a decade ago, which has seen him become an Executive Producer and Director of a few top-quality productions. One of his works won him a prestigious international award, which is an incredible feat. The talented actor is still young and has tremendous potential for growth and longevity in the industry.
What Is Thomas Gumede’s Age?
Thomas Gumede is currently 36 years old. He was born on 6 February 1986 in the Kwa-Zulu-Natal province of South Africa. Judging by some of the feats that he has accomplished in the entertainment industry in South Africa, one can say that he has indeed done very well for his age and self.
Thomas Gumede Began Acting As A Teenager
Thomas Gumede decided he wanted to become a movie star at a very young age. When his family moved to the big city while he was still a teenager, he took the opportunity to enroll in AFDA, which prides itself as one of the best outcomes-based film schools in the world.
His face was first seen on television in 2005 when he was 19, starring in a Volkswagen Passat Commercial while catching the eyes of those who matter. He made his first professional debut on the screens just a year later and has not looked back ever since.
He Has Featured In Several Television Shows
The very first television series that Thomas Gumede starred in was A Place Called Home, a drama series aired on South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC-1). The drama series ran for three years, from 2006 to 2009, and his character was called Siphiwe.
Being the very versatile entertainer that he is, Thomas was the co-host of a talk show called The Cypher, which made its first premiere on 19 July 2007 on the SABC-1 channel. The show was largely targeted at the youth and those youthful at heart, and who better to co-host the show than Gumede?
In 2007, Thomas was featured in a short war documentary on television titled Brothers In Arms:1978, which chronicled the war south of the border of South Africa between 1966 and 1989. He played the role of Patricio in this documentary which was shot on a budget of about $400.
He was again contracted to feature in a television drama series called Bay of Plenty on SABC-1 in 2008, which was aimed at showcasing lifesavers and the lifestyle they live. The show was mostly shot on both the North and South beaches in Durban, and it aired from 2008 to 2009.
Towards the end of 2008, the popular MTV show Ridiculousness was hoping to shoot an African version of the hilarious show and decided to set up shop in South Africa to look for a host. Thomas Gumede got the role and had co-stars such as Nigeria’s comedian, Basketmouth, and Mzansi’s Boity Thulo on the show.
In 2013, he appeared in an episode of a drama series titled Single Guys. The show’s storyline highlights the challenges of three friends navigating the dating game.
Gumede Has Ventured Into Reality Television Shows
In 2012, Thomas Gumede, alongside his friends and fellow South African celebrities Siya Ngwekazi and Longile Radu, came together to start a reality television show, Forever Young. The show was meant to showcase the challenges and triumphs they encountered in pursuing their dreams in their respective careers.
The show initially aired on the VUZU channel, and as its popularity continued to soar, it was moved to Mzansi Magic and finally aired on Mzansi Wethu before its end in 2016. This show is not to be confused with the American version, which coincidentally has the same title.
Thomas Gumede was also part of SABC’s television series Sketch U later, having been brought in to replace Siyabonga Radebe on the show. He didn’t feature that long in this role as the show only lasted a very short period as well.
In 2015, Thomas Gumede was selected as the host of a reality television show Love Back, which aired on the Mzansi Magic channel. The show was created to give lovers or people who still love or have some affection for their ex-lovers the opportunity to win them back and continue their relationship.
Thomas was the host of the very first season of the show, and after hosting the first two episodes of the second season, he was replaced by Wright Ngubeni. He returned to the show in its fourth season as host. The fifth season had Ngubeni back as the host.
Thomas and his three friends – Siya Ngwekazi, Simphiwe Mhlongo, and Longile Radu- were the Executive producers of this show, which was a brainchild of their joint production company, Parental Advisory Productions.
Thomas Gumede Has Given Sterling Performances As An Actor
Thomas Gumede made his first foray into the movie industry as far back as 2003, when he featured as a dying boy in a movie titled Elalini. Those were the days of his small beginnings and when his name didn’t ring any bell when mentioned in a movie. In 2006, he featured in a crime drama movie titled Cuppen, where he played a character named Simphinwe. Two years later, he featured in a short movie titled The Deal, playing a character named George.
In 2008, Thomas was a leading cast member of the comedy crime drama Friends In Need, where he played the character Wade. 2011 had him featured in a movie titled Otelo Burning, in which he starred as New Year. The film was made in the indigenous Zulu language and had English subtitles. It was written by James Whyle and directed by Sara Blecher.
In 2013, he was one of the top cast members for a film titled Gomora Hustle, playing the character called Dumisani. This was another film that he featured in and in which indigenous languages were spoken. In the same year, he appeared in the movie Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom as Jackson Dladla.
The film, which chronicled the life and travails of legendary South African statesman and freedom fighter, also had international cast members such as Idris Elba(who played the role of Mandela), Naomie Harris, Tony Kgoroge, and several others. Thomas also featured in a crime-themed film titled Cold Harbour, playing the role of Legama.
The film was about the breakout of war between two rival smuggling gangs in Cape Town and a straight cop being put under pressure to team up with one of the gangs. He also played the role of Maya in the film The Good Man, which was released the same year. In 2015, Thomas Gumede was featured in a romantic comedy film titled Tell Me Something Sweet.
His character was named Gordon in the film, and he starred alongside other stars like Nomzamo Mbatha, Thishiwe Ziqubu, Thembi Seetie, Kagiso Lediga, and a few others.
He also featured in the film Ayanda as Zoum. The film showcased the struggles of a young designer who did all she could to save her late father’s garage from being sold by her mother to keep his legacy and memory alive.
In 2017, he featured in a romantic drama movie titled The Lucky Specials, starring as a character named Sello. The movie also includes stars like Oros Mamofu and Sivenathi Mabuya, among others. In 2019, Thomas Gumede featured in another South African film titled Back Of The Moon, a drama about a gangster whose time was almost up but found a reason to live once again. He played the role of Nat in the film.
He Has Received Several Awards
Considering how early Gumede’s acting career started, it is not surprising that he has amassed a considerable body of work. His accomplishments haven’t gone unnoticed, as he has received some international and local accolades and recognition during his career.
In 2009, he won the Golden Horn Award for Best Actor in a TV Drama category for his role in Bay of Plenty at the South African Film & Television Awards. He was the youngest actor ever to win this award, and it remains a feat that no one else has broken to date.
In 2015, he won the Golden Horn Award for Best Actor in a TV Comedy category again for Single Guys at the South African Film & Television Awards, making it the second time he would do so in 6 years. His work in Otelo Burning (2013) and Ayanda (2015) were also nominated for awards at the South African Film and Television Awards in 2013 and 2016, respectively. Still, they did not win him the awards at that time.
He took to Social Media to announce that his production streaming on NetFlix, Kedibone, received an International award for the Best Film in Africa at the Septimius Awards in Amsterdam, the Netherlands in June 2022. This is aside from the fact that it is currently the most streamed series on NetFlix in the whole of Africa as of today.
Thomas Gumede Has Diversified Into Other Roles
Having put more than a decade and a half into the entertainment industry in South Africa, it is only natural for Gumede to have begun the process of diversifying into other areas apart from acting. He is transitioning perfectly well into the back-end roles in the television and movie industry and has more than a decade’s experience doing so.
Here are some of the other roles he has taken on in the entertainment industry:
He is a Co-Owner and Director Of Parental Advisory Productions
He started this production company way back in 2011 with three of his friends and business partners – Simphiwe Mhlongo, Siyabonga Ngwekazi, and Lungile Radu. They believe that the company is more about pursuing a passion for them rather than just a production company.
They have produced reality television shows such as Forever Young for three seasons and Mo Love. Their other productions include Love Back for three seasons, Ntombi and Ace, Big Nuz, and Mandla and Lexi.
He Owns A Television Station Called Black TV
Thomas Gumede started a black-owned, independent television station called Black TV sometime in the mid-2010s. In 2018, he stated in an interview that he had signed a long-term deal with GRB Studios – an Emmy award-winning studio aimed at creating content that would take his television channel global.
He stated that there was a lot of content that could be made by African content creators that could be showcased to the entire world, hence the reason why he established the station and signed the deal with a reputable studio. He is a Director and Producer that has produced popular television shows such as Abomama – a drama series now into its second season on Mzanzi Magic.
He is also the Executive Producer and Director of another successful production titled Kedibone, a drama series showcasing the life of a very beautiful actress who is a good girl with her boyfriend and an “it girl” on the fast lane of Johannesburg streets.
Thomas Gumede’s Love Life Has Been As Interesting As His Career
The Single Guy actor has a lot going for him in terms of money and good looks, which is a major attraction for women. He has dated his fair share of beautiful ladies and has even made them public. Here is what we know about his love life, especially the beautiful ones he chose to flaunt in the media.
He was said to have been in a fairly long relationship with popular MTV Video Jockey Nomuzi Mabena, with the entire South African entertainment landscape serenaded with images of their sweet love. They shared a lot in common, with some folks even postulating that a wedding might be in their future, but sadly they never made it to that level.
Cracks began to appear in the walls of their relationship when the grapevine had it that Thomas was also getting romantically involved with another popular celebrity. Sadly, things went downhill in their relationship from then on. They eventually broke up, and both parties moved on and began seeing other people.
Thomas Gumede once had a dalliance with popular Coming 2 America movie star Nomzano Mbatha. They probably met each other when they were both working with the South African Broadcasting Corporation, though on different productions at the time.
The two South African lovebird’s fairy tale love story was cut short amid a 3-way love triangle, leaving many fans and admirers wondering what their love would have been only if it had lasted long enough.
Thomas Gumede dated the very beautiful South African actress Samkelo Ndlovu for a few years before they called it quits. They were so much in love that she rejected the advances of another South African celebrity, who was asking her out at the time.
Thomas was said to have been very livid when he became aware that she was in the company of another man who was making advances on her. It is unclear if this was the major reason they ended their relationship, but it didn’t last long after his discovery.
It is possible that Gumede has been with more women both inside and outside of the entertainment industry, but the ones listed above are the ones that were made public.
Is Thomas Gumede Married?
Considering what Gumede has gone through in the past and the media’s role in the downfall of some of his past relationships, it isn’t much of a surprise that he has chosen to play his cards close to his chest. Moreover, it is difficult to ascertain if he has tied the knot with his current partner, whom he has chosen not to discuss until recently.
From the look of things, he is in a serious relationship with actress Zola Nombona, with whom he has a child. Moreover, when the news initially got out that he was the father of the child that Zola Nombona was carrying, it took a while before both parties accepted that they were even dating – which was shocking news to several of their fans.
It became controversial as Thomas, who took to social media to share scan results of a baby he was expecting from a mysterious lover, refused to mention who his baby mama was. Trust Mzansis- they took a very critical look at the fetus scans he had posted and pointed out that it belong to fellow actress Zola Nombona.
When congratulatory messages began pouring in for both Thomas and Zola, he initially denied that she was his baby mama. Still, heart emojis posted by Zola caught him in his lie, and he couldn’t deny it any further. Since the birth of their child, the love between Thomas and Zola seems to have waxed stronger, but the wedding bells are yet to ring for them, at least not that the public knows about.
Moreover, rumors are flying around that Thomas had secretly proposed to Zola and had asked his uncles to begin the Lobola negotiations with her family to make their union official and become one happy family with their current bundle of joy and others that may follow after him.
Gumede Is A Proud And Very Loving Father
Since the birth of his son, Cebelihle, Thomas Gumede has been nothing short of a proud, caring, and enthusiastic father to him. He pens several love notes to his son via his social media handles and is never frugal to share pictures of the father-son time they enjoy.
Cebelihle was born on 27 May 2020, and the arrival of his son also brought him much closer to his partner Zola, as he showers her with praise and endearing messages. He has even commented on a few occasions that he looks forward to the time when they would truly become a family.
Controversies Surrounding Thomas Gumede
Thomas Gumede is not a controversial person by nature. He tries to keep all his affairs very private from the prying eyes of the media and the public. However, once you become a celebrity, it will be hard to keep issues about yourself entirely private, as the paparazzi would surely find out some untoward things about you.
Most of the controversies Gumede has been involved in are around his relationships which is one of the reasons why he kept his relationship with his current partner a secret for a long time. But in the past, while dating actress Samkelo Ndlovu, rumors began flying that he became jealous and livid when he found out that his girl was being courted by Trevoh Noah – the Daily Show host in America.
He was particularly enraged when he found out that she was picked up by Trevoh, who was not yet famous then, from the set on which they were making a film together. He was said to have cut short the relationship after that, but both parties did not expressly state the real reasons why they broke up.
While he was also in a relationship with popular Video Jockey Nomuzi Mabena, he was rumored to have cheated on her with fellow actress Nomzamo Mbatha. While the love triangle went on, Nomuzi discovered that his relationship with both ladies did not last much after that. As stated earlier, Gumede tries to keep his nose clean and focus on his career, but his love for the ‘women’ and his passion for his career is undeniable.