In Dad's Foorsteps

By Drum Digital
23 December 2010

HAU, what is this? Where did you learn to do that?" he says, a horrified look on his face as he watches the young lady beside him swirling her dress around, preening and pouting for the camera. She's only 12 years old and her dad is not impressed.

"But you told me to pose," she says sweetly, shifting position just like a professional model and smiling radiantly.Actor Rapulana Seiphemo (43) may have starred alongside his little girl, Katlego, in his latest movie, but even he is surprised his daughter is such a natural in front of the DRUM cameras.

Pretty Katlego looks just like her dad when she smiles, and from their whispered conversations and laugh-out-loud moments it's clear that these two enjoy a great relationship with each other.

We're at a quaint teashop in Rivonia, near Sandton, Jozi, and we're having a real treat: this is the first time the very private actor has allowed any of his three children to be photographed. In the past he's barely even spoken about his family, preferring to keep them out of the limelight altogether.

But now that he and his middle child are about to share the big screen, he's decided to let her be in DRUM. Their movie, Paradise Stop, is due for release in Mzansi on 19 March. It's the second film from the powerhouse team – Rapulana, Kenneth Nkosi and director Jann Turner – that brought us the hilarious hit White Wedding last year.

Katlego's role is a case of art imitating life: she's Thato, the daughter of disgraced policeman Potso, who is played by her dad. The movie is a comedy-drama set against a backdrop of truck hijacking, corruption and kidnapping in Polokwane, Limpopo.

Paradise Stop is the name of a roadside truckstop and, well, let's just say it's not a good place to teach schoolchildren about morals. It seems Potso, despite his controversial background, is the only cop who really wants to do his job and he has a struggle on his hands. Despite the seriousness of the subject matter, though, it manages to be funny and uplifting.

KATLEGO admits working with her father was "a bit scary". She's watched him acting most of her life and says it's "weird" sometimes seeing him as Tau Mogale on Generations or Pheko Mokoena on Muvhango when he's just Dad to her and her siblings.

Knowing how much acting experience he brought to the movie was intimidating for her, especially as she had never acted before.

Rapulana tells us he didn't actually want his child to get into the industry but was persuaded by Jann, his long-time friend and colleague, and Kenny Nkosi, who has known the family for years.

They were having a lot of trouble filling the role of Thato and Katlego was the perfect solution, they told him. "I was sceptical, mainly because I'm not a fan of young people acting," Raps says.

"I think their lives should revolve around normal kids' stuff, not celebrity hype and fanfare."

However, after discussing it with her mother he decided to give his daughter the go-ahead. "Katlego was very excited," he says. "She enjoyed every moment on set." The young girl, who will be doing Grade 8 at a private Catholic school this year, didn't have to take time off school to make the movie. Her roles were shot over weekends so her schooling wasn't interrupted.

Read the full article in DRUM of 6 January 2010

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