Sunday, 28 April 2013

May or may not ...

A lot could come together in the new month, which is around the corner. On the 15th we see the first rough cut of Nothing for Mahala. My gut feel is that it is gonna be a winner. Follow this here : - if all goes according to plan, this film should be out in cinemas in SA by the end of September.

Then, we are waiting for some key news on Material from India and the UK. Hopefully May will bring us a milestone or two. The movie has been on DSTV this past week and the response has been extraordinary. If you have seen the film and were inspired by what you saw, then please vote on IMDB :

On the Vottle side, we will be trying something new in the month ahead. Let's hope it saves us some time.

May is gonna be action packed - bring it on!

Posted by Ronnie Apteker

Sunday, 21 April 2013

Tonight is Material

Material is the movie of the week in SA. It is premiering on M-Net at 8 pm tonight. This is the first time that an SA movie, besides a Leon Schuster film, is going to be the M-Net movie of the week on this prime Sunday night slot.

I am about to go to the garage to fill up my car and to get the Sunday Times. Riaad Moosa is on the front cover of the Sunday Times' magazine ... yeah, Material is on the box tonight. The tweeting this week around this has been great. Tonight is definitely material.

We are still chipping away on the UK and India fronts. Making progress, slowly but surely. The film was out in cinemas here in SA over a year ago, but the journey is still continuing.

Viva Material viva.

Posted by Ronnie Apteker

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

A good story

A friend sent me this story below. I like it a lot. I am sure you will too. It is a story that makes you laugh but it also smacks of entrepreneurial flair and good 'ol chutzpah.

I am collecting stories like this, for a new text we are working on (Gus Silber and I). If you have any innovative and entertaining stories like this one below, then please send it on to me.

Woman: Is there a problem, Officer?

Officer: Ma'am, you were speeding.

Woman: Oh, I see.

Officer: Can I see your license please?

Woman: I'd give it to you but I don't have one.

Officer: Don't have one?

Woman: Lost it 4 times for drunk driving.

Officer: I see...Can I see your vehicle registration papers please.

Woman: I can't do that.

Officer: Why not?

Woman: I stole this car.

Officer: Stole it?

Woman: Yes, and I killed and hacked up the owner.

Officer: You what?

Woman: His body parts are in plastic bags in the trunk if you want to see.

The Officer looks at the woman, slowly backs away to his car, and calls for back up. Within minutes 5 police cars circle the car. A senior officer slowly approaches the car, clasping his half drawn gun.

Officer 2: Ma'am, could you step out of your vehicle please!

The woman steps out of her vehicle.

Woman: Is there a problem sir?

Officer 2: One of my officers told me that you have stolen this car and murdered the owner.

Woman: Murdered the owner?

Officer 2: Yes, could you please open the trunk of your car, please.

The woman opens the trunk, revealing nothing but an empty trunk.

Officer 2: Is this your car, ma'am?

Woman: Yes, here are the registration papers.

The first officer is stunned.

Officer 2: One of my officers claims that you do not have a driving license.

The woman digs into her handbag and pulls out a clutch purse and hands it to the officer. The officer snaps open the clutch purse and examines the license. He looks quite puzzled.

Officer 2: Thank you ma'am, one of my officers told me you didn't have a license, that you stole this car, and that you murdered and hacked up the owner.

Woman: Betcha the lying bastard told you I was speeding too.

Posted by Ronnie Apteker

Wednesday, 10 April 2013

The big edit

The Heartlines movie "Nothing for Mahala" is now in the can. The big edit is underway.

It has been said that what you write, shoot and edit, are three very different stories. I know that the film was rock solid on paper. Then, what I saw from the direction and actors gave me tremendous confidence. Yes, there is magic in the can. Now, in the edit, we will need to be alchemists. Gold is the only option here. This is an important journey from an inspired man, Garth Japhet, and his compelling NGO. Yes, gold is what we need.

It’s evident our nation needs some real conversations about values and money. Nothing for Mahala: a campaign on values and money. A film with a purpose.

Overspending, unsecured lending and money troubles seem to be the order of the day. Living up to the Motsepes has become a growing phenomenon in Mzansi – often to the detriment of family life and even to the point of compromising the law. Too many of us are spending more than we earn, leading to a debt crisis. Too many of us want to get rich quick, leading to a rise in corruption. Talking about money can be a serious, sensitive topic. And this is where the Heartlines' missions comes into play. The idea behind the film is that all laugh with a tear in our eye while challenging our attitudes to moolah.

Heartlines was founded in 2002. It is an NGO that challenges people to live out good values and help build and restore good relationships at every level of society.

Please support this journey and follow the progress on

The edit is now going to consume most of our time. If all goes according to plan, the film should be ready by October.

Posted by Ronnie Apteker

Wednesday, 3 April 2013

Practice makes perfect

I have been learning more and more magic. Yes, abracadabra and sleight of foot stuff (and also, sleight of hand things too). I love what I am learning. Greg too. and Michael. Marcel has been a brilliant and inspired teacher. Sorry, this is all over the place. Like the magic studies. Learning is one thing, but practicing is a whole other journey. And this is the truth about life. Practice, practice, practice. That is only way to get anywhere.

Practicing in front of the mirror is a common exercise for all those learning magic. I am not trying to be a magician, but I love the wisdom, flair and storytelling behind it all. Magic, as was told me to me, is story telling with props. This is what captured my imagination from the start. I really am fascinated about where the conjurer takes his/her audience, not through illusion, but through words. The presentation, the routine, the shtick - that is the key to it all.

And with each attempt at a magical act, one hones in on their story. Mirrors unfortunately don't react. Or give real clues. They help you to visualize a technique, a method, a sleight. But they don't laugh or question. They don’t let you know if you have let the curtain down, and given away the secret. The more random people I practice on, the more I learn about which stories are working, and where to hide the sleights.

Practice does indeed make perfect, and the mirror helps. But people react to stories. Good, compelling, unusual tales, and mirrors can't help us there.

People and magic. That is what it is all about.

Posted by Ronnie Apteker