Zolisa Xaluva biography, Kings of Joburg, Smoke and Mirrors, Relationships and more

Zolisa Xaluva (born June 13, 1981) is a 42-year-old South African actor born in New Brighton. He is popularly known for portraying Jason on Generations 16, Melusi in Gomora, and, more recently, Caesar on Smoke and Mirrors.

His role on Smoke on Mirrors garnered critical acclaim, but according to recent reports, it seems like his character will soon be played by someone else.

At first, he denied ever getting fired, but it looks like there’s more to the tale. So, in this article, we will look into his life and career, including such news.

Biography Profile Zolisa Xaluva

Image of Zolisa Xaluva known as Melusi in Gomora
Image of Zolisa Xaluva, known as Melusi in Gomora

Full name: Zolisa Xaluva
Date of birth: June 13, 1981 (42 years)
Place of birth: New Brighton, Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape, South Africa
Education: Pretoria Technikon (now TUT)
Height: 1.83m
Occupation: Actor
Known for: Jason from Generations 16, Kinga of Jorbug, Smoke and mirrors, Melusi from Gomora
Net worth: $5 million- $10 million
Nationality: South African

Early life

He was born on June 13, 1981, to a middle-class family in New Brighton, Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape Province, South Africa. So, as of 2023, Zolisa Xaluva is 42 years old. Zolisa is the third child of Thando and Nombuyiselo Xaluva and the third of four siblings.

At the age of 11, he moved to Johannesburg with his family before moving to Pretoria to live with their extended family. This moved Zolisa closer to the industry and exposed him to more opportunities.


Despite returning to Port Elizabeth for a few years, Xaluva matriculated in Pretoria. Following matriculation, he majored in media studies and communication science at Wits Technikon for a few years. Due to financial difficulties, he dropped out of the course with one year to go.


He played Jason on Generations 16
He played Jason on Generations 16

To make ends meet, Zolisa attempted to establish a campus radio station for Wits Technikon, but he was turned down because he was no longer a student there.

As a result, he returned to Port Elizabeth and joined an arts and culture organization that performed plays for students in schools. He eventually returned to Pretoria and finished his theatre studies at Pretoria Tech in 2003.

Acting career of Zolisa Xaluva

Xaluva struggled to find acting roles after graduating from Pretoria Tech. So, he enrolled in a drama class while also getting an agent. Moreover, between 2004 and 2005, he landed his first television role as Lwazi on the third season of the SABC1 drama series Tsha Tsha.

He plays Caesar on Smoke and Mirrors
He plays Caesar on Smoke and Mirrors

After another period of unemployment, Xaluva landed the role of Jason. Who was a creative genius in the world of advertising? On South Africa’s most-watched television show, the SABC1 soapie Generations, in late 2005. His character’s contract was originally for six episodes. However, due to his popularity, it was extended to three months, then to a year.

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From 2006

He was given time off from Generations in early 2006 to film the fourth season of Tsha Tsha. Lwazi Mboweni, his character in Tsha Tsha, became a prominent character in Season 4, giving Xaluva his first major television role.

So, when he finished filming Tsha Tsha, he returned to Generations to learn that his colleague Linda Sokhulu was leaving the show. As a result, he decided to leave the show, claiming that his role was meaningless without her.

“My character revolves around Cleo, and without her, what would be my role? The story ended right there and then”, he told Dispatch at the time.

Zolisa Xaluva Career (2008–Present)

In 2008, Xaluva returned to television in the e.tv soap opera Rhythm City, playing the manager of hip-hop MC HHP, who was portraying himself in an 11-episode plot arc. He appeared as Khutso, a friend of the title character, in the SABC1 mini-series uGugu no Andile from June to July 2008. (Gugu and Andile).

A picture of Melusi from Gomora played by Zolisa Xaluva
A picture of Melusi from Gomora, played by Zolisa Xaluva

In 2019, he co-starred as Art Nyakama in Knuckle City with Bongile Mantsai. In 2020, he co-starred with Katlego Danke in the Mzansi Magic drama series Gomora as Melusi. The following December, Xaluva starred as Mogomotsi Mo Masire in the Netflix web series Kings of Joburg.

Did Zolisa Xaluva get fired from Smoke and Mirrors?

When questioned initially, Zolisa said he wasn’t fired but was currently in negotiations with the Smoke and Mirrors team. However, representatives from the Etv media group have actually confirmed the rumours.

According to him, Zolisa was amicably let go, and his role will be reserved for another actor. While it’s not clear who will replace him on Smoke and Mirrors, fans are clearly not happy with the decision to let him go, especially the decision to replace his character with another actor.

Awards and Nominations for Zolisa Xaluva

His career highlights include winning Best Supporting Actor at the 2019 SAFTAs for his performance in Sew the Winter to My Skin (2018). He was nominated for Best Actor in TV Drama at the South African Film and Television Awards (SAFTA 2020) for his role as Mogomotsi Mo Masire in Kings of Joburg.

The personal life of Zolisa Xaluva

Zolisa Xaluva does not like talking about his personal life. Especially his love life, but the media is aware of his 2012 relationship with model Zizipho Phoswa. Zizipho Phoswa claimed that Zolisa Xaluva was her child’s father.

According to close sources, Zolisa’s mother noticed that the child did not resemble him or anyone else in the family and demanded a paternity test.

Moreover, according to reports, the actor had a paternity test and discovered that his child was not his. So, as a result, the two split up. His romantic life was never discussed again on social media or anywhere else after that. So, we can’t say anything pertaining to that at this moment.

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According to our estimates, the Kings of Joburg star Zolisa Xaluva is at least 1.83 meters tall. Meaning he’s about 183cm in centimeters. Which is way above average for the average South African male, who stands at about 1.7 or 170cm.

Net worth

While his net worth is not known with certainty,. We do believe he is around the $5 million to $10 million mark considering the longevity and significance of his career.

Social Media

Zolisa Xaluva is not known to have any active social media platforms. However, it has been claimed that he’s the one behind a Facebook page in his name. But there’s no confirmation saying so or otherwise.


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