Johannesburg - Afrikaans romantic comedy Semi-Soet
moved from No 4 to No 2 this past weekend on the South African box office Top Ten, placing it ahead of action film This Means War
, local comedy-drama Material
and action-thriller Safe House
To date, Semi-Soet
has earned R5.3m at the box office and the site average increased by 3% from the previous weekend to this past weekend. The film's knockout performance began with an excellent opening weekend in which it earned more than R1.3m at the box office.
"The gross weekend takings increased by 1% weekend-on-weekend which is completely unheard of," says Helen Kuun, CEO of Indigenous Frilm Distribution. "It has now earned about the same as Bakgat 2, 36% more than Jakhalsdans did in 2010, and around 63% of the life-to-date takings of the December holiday musical hit Platteland - all this after a mere 23 days in cinemas. We expect the film to continue to perform brilliantly as its clear that audiences love it."
Kuun says the film is a remarkable success in its own right, but that it also signals the growth of the South African film industry in general, which is seeing a spike in the quality and production values of films being produced.
"Audiences are responding positively as a result," she adds.
"It's also worth noting that South African cinemagoers really enjoy romantic comedy and films which are pure entertainment. Semi-Soet is just that, and it's taken Afrikaans film in particular to a whole new level."
Producer James Alexander says he and his team are delighted with the film's performance. "There is nothing more rewarding than seeing audiences respond positively to a project that we worked so hard to perfect. The film brings together a huge amount of local talent and expertise, and that's what appears on the screen."
Semi-Soet tells the story of workaholic Jaci van Jaarsveld, who will go to any lengths to protect her boutique advertising agency from being bought and dismantled by a ruthless businessman known as "The Jackal". A huge contract to market a prestigious wine farm internationally will help save the agency, but winning the contract is no simple matter.
When Jaci sets out to sign up her new client, a series of hilarious events unfolds.
Semi-Soet was conceptualised by Anel Alexander, Joshua Rous, James Alexander and Sandra Vaughn, and is directed by Joshua Rous ('City Ses'la) and produced by James and Anel Alexander's Scramble Productions. The film stars Anel Alexander (Discreet, 7de Laan, Binnelanders), Nico Panagio (Die Storie van Susanna van Biljon, Survivor), Diaan Lawrenson (7de Laan, Stander), Paul du Toit (Liefling, Die Movie, Binnelanders), Louw Venter (The Most Amazing Show), and Sandra Vaughn (Getroud Met Rugby).
Semi-Soet is currently showing in cinemas.