FIFTY-TWO consecutive weeks of homegrown drama, intrigue and sheer spectacle will wash over M-Net from Sunday, 28 January at 6pm, with the arrival of Summertide.
The multi-generational drama tells the story of a marine biologist and father of two children, Martin Field (Frank Rautenbach), who moves to the idyllic False Bay after the death of his wife, Julia (Amalia Uys). The family has already been introduced in a series of promos – they include Martin’s parents, Wilma (Terry Norton) and Jack Field (Andre Jacobs) – the latter a retired naval commander who runs his household like a military operation and the Field children – Tristan (Jan Combrink) and Lucy (Evangelina Hallock) – who must cope with the loss of a parent and moving to a new town on top of the usual stresses of school.
Martin’s youngest brother, Gavin (Ty Keogh), is a retired pro surfer who runs a small surfboard business and lives out the back of his parents’ house. And then there’s Rebecca Solomons (Monique Rockman), who worked as a Michelin star chef in New York – and was Martin’s first love.
Reasons to tune in:
- It’s the first of its kind for M-Net
“Summertide is M-Net’s first venture into a format where a series arc takes place over 52 weeks, every week,” says Waldimar Pelser, Channel Director: Premium Channels at MultiChoice Group. “It gives us an amazing opportunity to explore each character in real depth and allow viewers to get to know them as they would a member of their own circle – people won’t be able to help falling in love with the Field family and the romance of the False Bay coastline.”
- It’s multi-generational and made for family-viewing
The families whose lives cross the Fields’ paths and intertwine in fascinating ways are the Solomons and the Du Plessises. Rebecca Solomons, recently returned from the US after the death of her father, Solly, has taken over Salty’s – her family’s indebted and struggling take-away fish ‘n chip shop close to the harbour. Rebecca is constantly torn between her duty to continue her father’s legacy, a dark secret from the past holding her back, and her dream of opening her own upscale restaurant in her hometown.
Rebecca’s mother, Cheryl (Euodia Samson), sees in her daughter her own tenacity and ability to dig deep to get by – and she is the keeper of Rebecca’s secret and will do anything to keep it safe. Rebecca’s Uncle Freddy (Maurice Carpede) is her father’s brother – and also a fisherman. He sells fish to Salty’s at a ‘”family rate” and is a leader in the local fisher community. He’s seen it all – from the changes to the False Bay fishing industry, the frustrations of the new licensing agreements, fighting illegal offshore trawlers and the perpetual fight with the authorities to allow fishing quotas that produce a liveable income for his family. Though often at odds with Rebecca, he looks out for family at all costs.
Hannes, Wesley and Yolande du Plessis (Morne Visser, Matthew Vey and Cassiel Eatock-Winnik) cross paths with the Fields in a haze of teenage testosterone. Hannes is a businessman with many fingers in many pies – some of which may be sweeter than others. Vivacious Yolande is ready to start a life of adventure – but she holds a secret that puts paid to her promising dance career and colours every decision she makes. Surfer boy Wesley is constantly caught between living his own young, carefree life and caring for his sister. Guilt, frustration, and an overprotective nature torment him and affect his relationship with his father and his community.
- There’s an award-winning crew behind the scenes
Red Letter Day Pictures’ Corné and René van Rooyen the hitmakers behind Alles Malan – produce Summertide alongside producer Tascha van der Westhuizen and lead an award-winning behind-the-scenes team, including SAFTA winners Dino Benedetti (cinematography – Hotel); Catharine Cooke (directing – Reyka; The River & iNumber Number), Ula Oelsen (editing – The River, Bloedbroers & The Wild) and Mary-Sue Morris (makeup – Siembamba).
- The storyline is relatable and relevant
“The characters in Summertide are meticulously researched for depth and authenticity and their special quality lies in their relatability – and it is this relatability that brings the story to life,” says René van Rooyen. “The selection of our cast was a deliberate choice, and their performances convey warmth and resonate with the intricacies of family life.
“The diversity of our cast is a source of excitement, ranging from 10-year-olds to individuals in their 70s”.
Corné van Rooyen says the producers’ goal is “to bring the entire family back together on one couch – a reminder of the Sunday nights we spent together in our youth, watching M-Net as an escape before tackling a new week.” He says the setting for the series is a character in itself – and a deep appreciation for the False Bay coast, where filming takes place. “This unique environment boasts a contemporary character and identity, and we believe that the ocean serves as a unifying force connecting all the characters. Each individual, in some way, is tied to this ocean, fostering interconnected relationships and contributing to personal growth.”
Viewers can ride the waves of Summertide on M-Net (DStv channel 101, every Sunday at 6pm from 28 January. This leads into Carte Blanche (7pm) and the Sunday night blockbuster movie (8.05pm). All shows will be live streamed on DStv Stream and are available on DStv Catch Up. Visit the M-Net Website and join the conversation on Twitter, Instagram, TikTok and Facebook.