*Photo by Jay Loots & Ivann Pieterse | keyart.com
The film version of the award-winning youth novel, ‘VASELINETJIE’, by Anoeschka von Meck, releases today in theatres nationwide. The film, produced by The Film Factory and Red Letter Day Pictures, was recently named as ‘Best Film’ at the kykNET Silwerskerm Festival.
‘Vaselinetjie’ tells the story of Helena ‘Vaselinetjie’ Bosman, a white girl raised by her loving brown grandparents in a remote rural village in the Northern Cape, South Africa. However, upon learning that Vaselinetjie is not their biological grandchild, the welfare intervenes and decides to send Vaselinetjie to a state orphanage in the faraway city of Johannesburg.
Life in Johannesburg does not resemble her prior existence and is in vivid contrast to it. For the first time, Vaselinetjie is confronted with the harsh realities of life, as well as unloved children, smoking cigarette butts, making friends and fitting in. In a world where no one cares about anyone else she too learnt not to give a damn. It is only when she falls in love with the rebellious orphan boy, Texan Kirby, that she’s forced to confront the true identity of her complicated past.
‘Vaselinetjie’ is a story about defining the meaning and origin of one’s identity and race within the turmoil of post-Apartheid South Africa.
VASELINETJIE NOW IN THEATRES NATIONWIDE!
"I shared a laugh with Corné at the Silwerskerm Festival when he said he feels like someone who is about to give birth and this baby should be born now! And yes, I think that’s exactly the way we’re feeling. You’re excited but also tired of waiting and scurrying around, your voice is hoarse from speaking and yet ‘Vaselinetjie’ has taken over one’s life. Even if you’re not busy with a premiere or an interview, you can’t help but always be aware of it. The interest is astounding. It’s as if the entire South Africa is waiting for this child to make her appearance." - Anoeschka von Meck, writer of ‘Vaselinetjie’.
“Thinking about how long it’s been coming with us, the challenges and never-ending hours of work, we toured the whole country in search of the best locations and actors, and in the meantime we moved to Observatory to Johannesburg to Stellenbosch and virtually lived out of our Bantam bakkie for a year... It has been a very long journey and it’s almost sad to think it’s now come to an end. It puts a lot of pressure on one... a frightening, exciting type of feeling and the hope that ‘Vaselinetjie’ will be a box-office success." - René van Rooyen, scriptwriter.
“To imagine making a film like ‘Vaselinetjie’ was just a dream 11 years ago; it took 11 years to be brave enough and here ‘Vaselinetjie’ is with one of the most important stories to tell in the country."- Corné van Rooyen, scriptwriter and director.
“I am very proud that I became a part of the ‘Vaselinetjie’ story. An excellent book that touched many lives is now a film. The film is a wonderful accomplishment and gives an entirely new perspective and life to the ‘Vaselinetjie’ story and its characters."- Danie Bester, producer.