Easy Money is a South African television drama series produced by Quizzical Pictures inspired by real life Ponzi schemes that have seen South Africans lose millions, which tells the story of a school teacher whose life spirals into chaos after falling victim to a pyramid scheme.
The series revolves around young teacher Khosi (Xoli Zondi), who gets involved in a pyramid scheme run by a company called Pharaoh Investments. Inspired by real-life events and now-infamous pyramid schemes, the series attempts to answer the question: "Why do we fall for pyramid schemes?"
The show is held together by the narration of Khosi's only son Moagi (Paballo Koza), forming the backbone to a turbulent period during which mother, wife and school teacher Khosi makes decisions which affect her life – and the lives of all those around her.
Taking on the lead role of Khosi, a school teacher who enjoys a good standing in the community, is Xoli Zondi. Don Mosenye plays Justice, Khosi's husband and father to Moagi, portrayed by Paballo Koza.
Noxee Maqashalala takes on the role of Zee, Khosi's older sister and Tinah Mnumzana plays Moagi's nanny Naledi. Andrea Dondolo plays Johanna, a helper who is currently the treasurer in the community stokvel. Connie Chiume plays Gloria, a teacher and colleague to Khosi who makes a massive investment into the scheme.
Sive Mabuya takes on the role of Dipuo, recruiter at Pharaoh Investments. Mr Eddy, CEO of Pharaoh Investments, is played by David Dennis. Austin Shandu plays Mr. Eddy's right hand man and professional scammer, Leano. Dipuo and Leano are the tag-team that work and fish for investors on behalf of Mr. Eddy.
Other cast include Jerry Phele as Amos, the community construction worker; Thabo Malema plays the jovial Collins, who is best friends with Zee; and other guest actors include Sibongile Nojila and Jose Domingos.
Easy Money is produced by Harriet Gavshon and Viva Liles-Wilkin for Quizzical Pictures. The executive producer for e.tv is Molefi Lebone. The first episode was written by Nonzi Bogatsu and directed by Xolile Tshabalala.
Khosi (played by Xoli Zondi)
Khosi is a 34-year-old history teacher, wife to Justice and Moagi's mother. She is a proud woman who does good and likes to be recognised for it.
Her standing in the community is important to her and wants to live her #bestlife in all aspects of her life from work, to family and socially. But Khosi's pride is also her undoing as she does not manage well when her own faults become apparent to her.
Leano (played by Austin Shandu)
Leano is a 34-year-old professional scammer. He has never had an honest job and has made a living going from scam to scam. His charming nature makes him very good at manipulation and he knows how to get his way.
Leano has been employed by Mr. Eddy to be the face of the Pharaoh Holdings investment scheme and he plays his part to a tee.
Justice (played by Don Mosenye)
Justice is 36, Khosi's car salesman husband. He is a man who enjoys the finer things in life and loves to be seen as successful. He is highly aspirant and has no issue with living beyond his means if it makes him look good.
He is a good father to his son, Moagi but as a husband he is less attentive and tender, even though he truly loves his wife. He has a penchant for luxury cars and tends to get them in a financial bind.
Dipuo (played by Sive Mabuya)
Dipuo (30) is a well-put-together and attractive estate agent, who has found her way into the world of the pyramid scheme, thanks to Leano taking her under his wing. Her background and property sales makes her a great salesperson and she accepts the job of being a 'fisher' for the scheme.
She enjoys the perks of the job (nice house, nice car, good money).
Gloria (played by Connie Chiume)
Khosi's work colleague, Gloria is a maths teacher who invests her retirement money in the scheme. She is no stranger to these sorts of schemes, having invested in Miracle 2000 and MMM - and both times got out ahead of the crash.
Zee (played by Noxee Maqashalala)
Zee (40) is Ma Lizzie's eldest daughter and Khosi's older sister. She works as a cashier at the local superette. A fun-loving, glamorous woman who likes the good life, Zee isn't good at taking responsibility.
She is desperate to get her mother's approval but is often her own undoing as she very rarely sticks to her word or sees anything through.
Moagi (played by Paballo Khoza)
Moagi (12) is Justice and Khosi's son who is on the Autism Spectrum. He attends school in Mondeor where his mother teaches and he struggles socially. He is sensitive to strangers and does not fare well with a change in routine and new spaces.
Moagi has an above average affinity for numbers and is something of a number genius. His creative outlet is drawing, which he uses to create animated flip books to express his thoughts and emotions
Johanna (played by Andrea Dondolo)
Johanna is a domestic worker in Bassonia. She is a bossy woman who commands the respect of the other domestic workers, her virtual minions. She holds a position of power and wields it with pleasure.
As the treasurer of the domestic workers' Stokvel, Johanna rules with a stern hand. But she will be tested when her know-it-all ways backfire and she finds herself at the mercy of her minions.