Kaalgat Karel is a far cry from Boondogle Films’ recent works, such as fiction feature Tess and documentary 1994: The Bloody Miracle, but the new film promises lots of great South African humour.

Here a serial streaker and a paramedic set the stage for the Afrikaans romcom of the year. The movie was filmed in East London and makes its on-screen debut on 24 September, 2021.

Kaalgat Karel. Picture: Oliver Kohl
Kaalgat Karel. Picture: Oliver Kohl

Streaking at sports events

Produced by Boondogle’s Paul Egan and Meg Rickards (also director), Kaalgat Karel tells the story of Karel Venter, a guy who loves the thrill of streaking during sports matches – and the accompanying social media stardom.

He falls head-over-heels for the paramedic who saves him after a streak gone wrong, but there’s a problem; she’s a strait-laced single mom who has no interest in his streaking shenanigans.

Paul was intrigued by why someone would do something as crazy as streaking at a sports match, and even more so by the crowd’s reaction – despite the disruption to the game, the crowd seemingly almost always loves a streaker,” says Meg. “So, we started researching streakers and what makes them tick. We wondered what would happen if a streaker fell in love with someone who disapproved of their activities. This got us thinking about social media and how it creates a ‘connection’ between people — but is this virtual connection enough?”

As for casting, Paul and Meg worked closely with casting director Christa Schamberger and held ‘chemistry’ auditions to see how different actors would work together. The result? The film stars Francois Jacobs (Donkerland, Vir die Voëls, Pad Na Jou Hart) as Karel, Schalk Bezuidenhout (Kanarie, Hotel, Sara se Geheim) as his friend and roommate Flip, Christia Visser (Tess, Ballade vir ’n Enkeling, Hollywood in my Huis) as no-nonsense single mom and paramedic Rita, Siv Ngesi (Knuckle City, 24, Black Sails) as Vuyo, Karel’s streaking rival, well-known comedian and singer, Tracey-Lee Oliver (The Voice, Project Fame) as Rita’s fellow paramedic and Eden Classens (Suidooster, Dancing with the Stars) in the role of the glamorous plastic surgeon Jean-Pierre du Toit.

The film also features Rosebelle Clasen, daughter of Neels and Eloise Clasen, in the role of Bella, Rita’s daughter.

“Many of the cameo roles were cast in the Eastern Cape and we have been overwhelmed by the talent and enthusiasm in this part of the world,” says Meg.

“While the film boasts a naughty sense of humour, it’s also a subtle, satirical commentary on contemporary South Africa. That said, the movie counters all the current doom and gloom, is proudly South African and taps into South Africans’ undying optimism, generosity and determination.”

In addition to Kaalgat Karel, the company has a number of projects in the pipeline, including Borderlines; Snake, an adaptation of the novel by Tracey Farren; Strumming High, a Xhosa-language high school love story written by Mustapha Hendricks; and the comedy Pensioners’ Day, also written by Mustapha Hendricks.

The film is distributed locally by Filmfinity (Pty) Ltd. The Kaalgat Karel release date is 24 September, 2021.

What: Kaalgat Karel film
Social media: https://www.facebook.com/KaalgatKarel, #KaalgatKarelFilm
WS