Zakes Makgona Mokae was born on 5 August, 1934 in South Africa and died on 11 September 2009. He was born in Johannesburg, South Africa. The South African-American actor moved to Great Britain in 1961 and to the United States in 1969. Before his death he has featured in several movies.
Zakes turned to acting at the same time as playwright Athol Fugard was started his carreer. The two worked together on Fugard’s first international success, The Blood Knot, from 1961, a two-hander set in South Africa about brothers with the same mother but different fathers; Zach (played by Mokae) is dark skinned and Morris (played by Fugard) is fair skinned.
His early film roles included Darling (1965) as a guest at a wild party, and The Comedians (1967) starring Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor. His major films are split between anti-apartheid films such as Cry Freedom (1987) and A Dry White Season (1989), and cult horror films such as The Island (1980), Dust Devil and many others.
Before his death, his most recent films are Vampire in Brooklyn (1995) and Krippendorf’s Tribe (1998).