‘SuzelleDIY’ star tackles new project
JULIA Anastasopoulos, star of SuzelleDIY, has gained success thanks to her parody of Afrikaans culture with her popular show on YouTube.
For her new project, a “mockumentary” Tali’s Wedding Diary, Anastasopoulos stars as Tali, a self-obsessed Sandton kugel who has moved to Cape Town and has hired a crew to film the build-up to her wedding to property agent, Darren.
“For the new character, a lot of people will be like ‘wow, this is completely different to me’, and hopefully with this new character, I will be able to show a bit more diversity as an actress and comedian and to show these very funny and beautiful typical South African stereotypes,” she said.
“For this new project, sure I am definitely looking at a certain type and drawing comedy from certain kind of South Africaness. I am doing that with as much authenticity as I can. That is where the comedy is; it has to feel real, like you recognise it in your life.
“Hopefully people see it as a celebration rather than anything else. It’s a parody, as is with Suzelle. Some of the best comedy for me is parody.”
Anastasopoulos’s Greek influence comes from her grandmother and aunts. Her mother, a fine arts teacher, inspired her and her two sisters.
“When I finished school it was a bit of a toss-up of whether or not I would go the fine-art route or the drama route. I ended up choosing the drama route. Just because I was so passionate about performance and acting and theatre,” she said.
Anastasopoulos said her character in Tali’s Wedding Diary is “very much self-involved” and “she loves gym and fashion”, adding: “She’s like the quintessential Joburg cool-girl type, that I think we can all identify with.
“This is a project that has been on the cards for a few years and finally we had this opportunity to make something from it, so we really just jumped at the opportunity.”
Anastasopoulos married Ari Kruger, who is the co-creator and director of Tali’s Wedding Diary, in March. They have worked together since SuzelleDIY.
“We went straight from planning our own wedding to planning a ‘new wedding’, so it’s like I had two weddings this year, it’s absolutely insane.... It’s been really amazing,” she said.
“Ari and I have an incredible working relationship. Luckily, because we have been doing so much work on Suzelle, we know exactly how to manage that.”
Tali’s Wedding Diary is being filmed in Cape Town. The eight-episode series will premiere on Showmax in December. The show is produced by Sketchbook Studios, which Anastasopoulos and Kruger own.
“People (must know) that Suzelle isn’t going anywhere. This really is just a new project that can exist at the same time. It’s so amazing for me as an actress to do that,” she said.