Chomee quits over miniscule pay
AFRO-POP siren Chomee has pulled out of new SABC1 dance show Turn It Out after rejecting the producers meagre and insulting offer.
We can reveal that the show's first episode, shot in Soweto yesterday, was thrown into disarray after Mzansi's no 1 female pantsula refused to pitch.
The show's producer Moyikwa Sisulu downplayed the matter yesterday, saying the songbird was not available because she was booked to perform out of the province.
"We're not aware that Chomee was unhappy with the fee. What we know is that she was out of the province to do some gigs," says Sisulu.
"If it is about money then it would be unfortunate for her to run to the media to negotiate her fee instead of engaging us."
Our mole says Chomee pulling out of the show, which will replace Jika Majika, is likely to put Sisulu and the SABC on a collision course.
This because when Sisulu sold the concept to the commissioning editor, he promised that Chomee would be their main judge.
"The SABC will have to intervene to resolve this impasse. It is not good for the brand," says our mole.
Sisulu's company Fuel Media, wants to pay Chomee less than R15000 for all 26 episodes.
But her fee was never negotiated and she had not signed a contract.
She discovered only two weeks ago what she would be paid and has been attempting to get them to hike up their offer ever since.
"She felt insulted by this offer given her stature in the industry," says the source.
It is alleged Sisulu asked Somizi to replace Chomee but he too sneezed at the offer.
Says Sisulu: "Yes we have approached Somizi but his demands were way out of our range."
He denies rumours that Khanyi Mbau was asked to replace Chomee.
"Look, the SABC can do without Chomee but we will see what we can do. Maybe we will have to cut costs in some of our departments and see if we can't meet her half way.
"But today's shoot has to proceed without her. We had no reason to defer the shoot," he says.
Chomee referred us to her boss Arthur Mafokate, who says: "We are addressing the matter and hopefully this will be resolved by or before the end of next week."