Monday, May 26, 2008

Ashley Callie

Ashley Callie was a South African actress best known for her role as Leone Haines in Isidingo (from 2000 to 2008). Callie died on 15 February 2008 as a result of head injuries from a head-on car accident in Johannesburg, South Africa on 8 February 2008.

Born in Johannesburg on 19 May 1973, Ashley studied at Wits University and received a BA Honours degree in Dramatic Arts.
Her performance in Isidingo recently won Ashley the Best Actress award at the South African Film and Television Awards. When she was not in front of the cameras, Ashley was also co-owner of La Vista Social Club in Melville, Johannesburg.

On 15 Narch 2007, Callie told Top Billing magazine that playing the role of Lee Haines on Isidingo had been a life long ambition of hers. She had been a fan of the show ever since it first aired in 1998. In this interview, she explains how she does not enjoy the fame that comes with her celebrity status, and that her family is an extremely important part of her life. She also goes on to explain why her character, Lee Haines, is not at all like her.

In 2006, she won the SAFTA (South African Film and Television Awards) award for best actress, for her role in Isidingo. The awards took place on 28 October 2006 (Who plays Barker Haines.On 29 February 2008, Callie won the Mzansi Star Actress award at the inaugural Stars of Mzansi awards ceremony, held in Johannesburg. The award was accepted on her behalf by Robert Whitehead in Isidingo), and Steven Miyambo (Who plays Orlando).

After her death, South African Minister of Arts and Culture, Dr Pallo Jordan has called Callie the image of the new South Africa:

"We were truly blessed to have a young, gifted, South African who stretched all the sinews in her body to reflect the ideals of a united, non-racial and non-sexist society... the ministry is deeply shocked and saddened"

The greatest tragedy is the loss of a talent and potential to rival the best in the international arena.

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