The DIY queen Ju­lia Anas­ta­sopou­los

“Suzelle has given me the op­por­tu­nity to spread joy via crazy, SAflavoured com­edy.”

Glamour (South Africa) - - Glamour Health -

As an ac­tress, I was al­ways in­ter­ested in cre­at­ing some kind of com­edy that cel­e­brated the quirk­i­ness of SA char­ac­ters,” says Ju­lia Anas­ta­sopou­los, 33, the tal­ent be­hind the me­dia sen­sa­tion Suzelle DIY.

“I didn’t know what ex­actly to do with my idea, but my fi­ancé Ari, who is a di­rec­tor, mo­ti­vated me to film an ex­per­i­men­tal pi­lot. We knew the pink wall in my Cape Town flat would be a per­fect back­drop,” Ju­lia ex­plains.

The name Suzelle was in­spired by her char­ac­ter’s bold per­son­al­ity, and the DIY theme came about be­cause DIY was trend­ing at the time, Ju­lia has a knack for it and, as she says, “DIY is just like act­ing in that both in­volve cre­at­ing some­thing from noth­ing.”

The im­me­di­acy of on­line me­dia ap­pealed to Ju­lia and Ari, and on 7 May 2014 they posted How to drill a hole with­out mak­ing a mess to Face­book.

“Our fam­ily and friends loved it, so we posted videos on In­sta­gram. When the 15-se­cond limit proved to be too short, we cre­ated a Youtube chan­nel.”

The in­tro­duc­tion of Suzelle’s side­kick Mar­i­anne, played by Ju­lia’s BFF Gina Collins, on 12 Au­gust 2014, struck com­edy gold, with 10 000 views on the first episode in which she fea­tured. Since then, there have been 56 episodes, and a new char­ac­ter, ‘Ryno in the Bush’, and guests have in­cluded chef Jan Hen­drik van der Westhuizen and Pro­fes­sor Tim Noakes.

“I had no ex­pec­ta­tions of Suzelle in the be­gin­ning. She was just a fun ex­per­i­ment,” says Ju­lia. “But she’s changed my life and has given me the op­por­tu­nity to spread joy via crazy, Sa-flavoured com­edy.”

Now, with over 18 mil­lion Youtube views and 100 000 sub­scribers, a Com­edy Cen­tral TV show, a book out, Suzellediy: The Book (Hu­man & Rousseau; R280), a movie in the works and a pro­duc­tion com­pany, Sketch­book Stu­dios, it’s hard to imag­ine that Ju­lia spent 10 years bal­anc­ing act­ing, il­lus­tra­tion and de­sign work in de­mand­ing cre­ative in­dus­tries.

Then again, as she notes, Suzelle’s life phi­los­o­phy is, “Do it your­self be­cause any­body can.” Ju­lia ex­plains, “That’s be­come our life phi­los­o­phy, too. We made a suc­cess out of an idea by do­ing it our­selves with what we had.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from South Africa

© PressReader. All rights reserved.