SATURDAY PROFILE | Oscar nominated SA director René van Rooyen: ‘My mother tongue gave me competitive edge’

accreditation
Share your Subscriber Article
You have 5 articles to share every month. Send this story to a friend!
0:00
play article
Subscribers can listen to this article
René van Rooyen (supplied)
René van Rooyen (supplied)

South African director René van Rooyen, whose film 'Toorbos' has just been selected as South Africa's entry for the Oscars, says part of the reason she decided to film in her mother tongue Afrikaans was so that she could compete internationally. She speaks to News24 about her eight-year battle to turn 'Toorbos' into a film, how pregnancy earlier on in her career would’ve set her back, and her hopes for her baby daughter. 

Fourteen years ago, a defiant 22-year-old René van Rooyen - hailing from the countryside of Paarl in the Western Cape - was on a gap year in London when she decided to write a letter to her parents informing them she was coming back to South Africa to study filmmaking. 

And this month, her dreams have finally taken flight after the film she wrote and directed 'Toorbos' was chosen to represent South Africa at the Oscars in the United States, eight years after she felt compelled to turn the book by acclaimed South African author Dalene Matthee into a film. 

Support independent journalism
Subscribe to News24 for just R75 per month to read all our investigative and in-depth journalism. You can cancel any time.
Subscribe
Already a subscriber? Sign in
Lockdown For
DAYS
HRS
MINS
Voting Booth
After the opening weekend of URC action, what did you make of the South African struggles?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
It exposed the quality of South African rugby...
40% - 495 votes
There were positives to take
7% - 91 votes
We shouldn't read too much into one weekend
17% - 213 votes
It will take the SA sides time to adjust to the new competition
36% - 442 votes
Vote
Rand - Dollar
14.96
-0.0%
Rand - Pound
20.50
-0.3%
Rand - Euro
17.50
+0.2%
Rand - Aus dollar
10.90
-0.5%
Rand - Yen
0.13
+0.2%
Gold
1,750.46
0.0%
Silver
22.62
+0.8%
Palladium
1,970.64
-0.2%
Platinum
983.87
-0.3%
Brent Crude
78.09
+1.1%
Top 40
57,784
+0.3%
All Share
64,197
+0.2%
Resource 10
57,744
+0.9%
Industrial 25
82,891
+0.0%
Financial 15
14,246
-0.5%
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes Iress logo
Editorial feedback and complaints

Contact the public editor with feedback for our journalists, complaints, queries or suggestions about articles on News24.

LEARN MORE