Cape creative talent shines in new Netflix documentary
There’s something romantic about the new Netflix documentary, My Octopus Teacher. A film that has everyone talking, it is basically a love letter to a mollusc as told by award-winning documentary filmmaker and co-founder of the Cape Town-based Sea Change Project, Craig Foster.
Filmed in 2010, the film documents Foster’s relationship with an octopus, which he develops by visiting the same diving spot off the southern-most tip of Africa every single day for about a year. During this time, he captures an array of intimate and amazing moments of the sea creature’s life, from “playing” with a shoal of fish and using shells as armour to outwitting a predatory pyjama shark.
Beyond the story of an unlikely friendship, there is something really special about the window that Foster opens up to a magical world below the surface; providing viewers with imagery that many of us have never seen before. The footage he captures of life in a kelp forest and of all the goings on across this underwater playground will challenge everything you think you know about the ocean.
For me, a film like this not only highlights the level of creative talent in Cape Town but it also showcases how much beauty and diversity the city itself has to offer, says Dirk Worring, senior director at zeven GmbH. “For me, a film like this showcases the potential Cape Town has to offer. Not only are there vast amounts of highly skilled people in the city – ranging from film, photography, copywriting and design to programming and game title development – but the positive vibe and attitude of the people we work with like no other,” he says. “A smile comes naturally to anybody you pass on the street and when you speak to people they almost always have a welcoming and friendly tone of voice. Combine this with the service orientation we experience and Cape Town is just a perfect package. “
Looking beyond the ocean
And Forster isn’t the only one demonstrating this. Back in 2017, Sony Pictures shot part of The Dark Tower, based on the Steven King series, just outside of Cape Town. At the time, the entertainment company explained that Cape Town “offered unique landscape and awe-inspiring forests” and production designer on the film, Christopher Glass, commented that there is a “romance and certain sense of adventure that goes into filming in Africa”. More recently, world-renowned director and producer Ridley Scott selected Cape Town as a major location for HBO Max’s latest show, Raised by Wolves.
We all know that Cape Town is beautiful and unique but it also offers a range of more practical benefits. For European businesses, partnering with brands and creative talent in Cape Town makes sense because there is no communication barrier, the time zones are pretty similar and the favorable exchange rate means that you can access top talent at a competitive price. And judging by the type of content coming out of the city, like My Octopus Teacher, it’s safe to say that the Mother City it producing some high quality stuff.
If Foster’s story inspired you to check out what Cape Town’s creative scene has to offer, we can help. As zeven, it’s our job to tell your story. To find out more, get in touch.