“Not your everyday kind of series” – Sandra Prinsloo on Koek

By Rozanne Els7 March 2024

“Not your everyday kind of series” – Sandra Prinsloo on Koek

The first two episodes of Koek are now streaming on Showmax, and early reviews are glowing. “The series… creates an almost impossible Holy Trinity of television: a cast with actors who give career-best performances; a script that casts a spell; and an overarching vision that manages to weave even the smallest details into a perfect TV tapestry… It’s also funny – often laugh-out-of-your-stomach funny,” says Afrikaans TV site Terloops, while Huisgenoot adds, “This series is like no other.”

Clayton Everson and Sandra Prinsloo in Koek

Of course, it’s hard to talk about a career-best performance for Sandra Prinsloo: Koek has competition there from films like The Gods Must Be Crazy, Hans Steek die Rubicon Oor, and Die Seemeeu, TV shows like Konings and Erfsondes, and, of course, the beloved soapie, Egoli: Plek van Goud.

Watch the trailer for Koek

But Prinsloo’s turn in Koek as a brandy-drinking, cigar-smoking, leopard-print-loving, and kidney-stealing mob boss and mother is certainly up there as her most memorable – and completely unlike anything that came before it. 

Rozanne Els caught up with the stage and screen legend to find out more about her first Showmax Original:

Tell us more about your character, Moekie.

Moekie is great because she is so far removed from who I am, although what happens to Moekie happens to almost every woman, so it wasn’t hard to find common ground. 

She starts out as a very ordinary housewife, but then she has a big disappointment in love and decides to take revenge and change her life. She completely changes from a bland housewife to this hectic woman in animal print who takes over her husband’s syndicate. 

So she is a delightful, outrageous, over-the-top character, but she also has a big heart, a hell of a big heart. And when she loves, she loves with all her heart. That’s why she gets hurt so often.

She also has this complicated child, [Stephanie, played by Llandi Beeslaar]. But she loves her; it’s her child. No matter what this child does, she still loves her and she tries to protect her – until the point where she can’t anymore.

Would you say your wardrobe matches Moekie’s?

Never! (laughs) No, not at all, but there are some things from my wardrobe that I used, now that you ask. I’m not one for animal print but Moekie’s wardrobe was great. I don’t know where they got the stuff, but they got great stuff.

How would you describe the relationship between Moekie and Christelle, played by Cindy Swanepoel? 

Well, in the beginning, she doesn’t like Christelle at all, but then she sees Christelle’s dilemma. Christelle’s situation is actually exactly her situation – or at least, what Christelle initially thinks. And Christelle becomes indispensable to her; Moekie needs her in her business. So by hook or by crook, she wants to keep her there, but she also feels sorry for her. 

What stands out to you about the project?

It was just one of the most wonderful productions for me to work on; it was really fun for me. Working with a script that is so good and so out there is absolutely a miracle. It is not a very South African approach at all, especially not an Afrikaans approach (laughs). It’s outrageous, and that is a wonderful, wonderful thing. Of course this is a good thing! So that we ruffle our feathers a little, you know, so that we shake ourselves out of our complacency about what nice people we are when we really aren’t. It’s just to say, ‘Hmm, you’re all such goody-two-shoes on the surface, but look what you look like when you dig a little deeper.’

The other great thing is that we are an incredible cast. It’s such a lovely cast. Ashley [de Lange] and Dawid [Minnaar] and I recently worked together on Die Moeder [a stage production directed by Christiaan Olwagen], so we know each other, which made it easy and fun. Dawid also played a completely different type of role here. He also plays something that’s against his nature.

This is my first time working with Cindy, but it was wonderful. Cindy’s a marvellous actress, so easy to work with and such a lovely person. 

So the whole process was just incredible.

What do you think the viewers’ reaction will be?

I haven’t the faintest idea. Hopefully, they’ll recognise themselves in the characters and the storyline and they’ll laugh about it because I think it’s bloody funny. It’s dark humour, but it’s damn funny. It is a production that is so rich in every way – in characters, in textures, in dialogue, in action. It has everything in it. And it is just such an unusual text. This is not your everyday kind of series. But you have to have a bit of a strong stomach if you want to watch this series, I think! (laughs) Viewers will have to challenge themselves.

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