Henriëtte Loubser, editor of Huisgenoot, talks about how the journey to making the film began: “When we started thinking about ways to celebrate the magazine’s 100th birthday two years ago, we decided it would be wonderful to make a romantic film. It was a logical choice to involve kykNET Films, as they’re the experts in Afrikaans movies.
“The idea to have a readers’ competition in which we asked them to send their true-love stories took root. The winning story would then serve as inspiration for the script.”
Irma de Klerk from Newcastle and the story about her and husband Sampie’s rocky road to love and the altar won by a mile.
“After we got to know the couple we realised that they were indeed the worthiest winners. They’re committed Huisgenoot readers and gave us the creative freedom to transform their story into a movie with enough twists and turns to turn it into a lovely script. Although the basic premise is still based on their story, events and characters were created to contribute to the excitement.”
Vir Die Voëls is the true story of Irma Humpel, portrayed by Simoné Nortmann, a stubborn tomboy who ends up at the altar with the boy who relentlessly teased her when she was a young girl.
She was convinced that independence was the only form of freedom, but all of a sudden Sampie de Klerk (Francois Jacobs) starts challenging her convictions on all levels.
Vir Die Voëls is set in the late ’70s and according to Henriëtte it’s going to “tug at the audience’s nostalgic heartstrings”. She says: “It’s a movie about a strong woman who was ahead of her time and a man who’s so strong in himself that he’s able to respect a woman and is prepared to fight for her love.
“It’s a story about the battle against yourself and how to prevent external circumstances and emotional baggage from ruining your chance at love. These are all themes with which many people will be able to identify.”
As journalists, Henriëtte and her team enjoyed experiencing how a movie is made – the script development, detail about costumes, décor, camerawork, colours, music and the editing process.
“We have the best possible producer and director for the project in Danie Bester and Quentin Krog respectively and it’s such a privilege to work with Jan du Plessis, Karen Meiring and the rest of the M-Net and kykNET teams.
“And Irma and Sampie now feel like part of the Huisgenoot family; we’re so happy we got to know them better.”
Quentin Krog, director of the film, says: “I enjoyed the entire filming process. I worked with a phenomenal team. If I had to choose which scenes I enjoyed directing the most, the moments between Irma (Simoné) and Sampie (Francois) who delivered consistent drama, romance and comedy are definitely the highlights.”
He concludes: “I’m excited about the audience who’s going to watch the film. I’m excited about the idea of transporting them to a different time and era. To make them laugh, cry and fall in love. To entertain them.”
Vir Die Voëls was produced in collaboration with kykNET Films and The Film Factory and boasts a stellar cast, including Elize Cawood, Nicola Hanekom, Neels van Jaarsveld, Drikus Volschenk, Leandry Smit, Liam Bosman, Lara Kinnear, Candice Kruger and Bennie Fourie, among others.
The film will be released on 25 November 2016 and is distributed by Ster Kinekor Entertainment.
Watch the teaser trailer here: https://youtu.be/SngnfsiED3k