Lovers of local cinema are in for a treat as the Afrikaans film, Liewe Lisa, hits the big screen this Thursday.
Loosely based on the 1967 cult classic The Graduate, Liewe Lisa follows the story of Daniel, an aspiring writer, who in his pursuit of excitement finds himself trapped in an illicit affair with the wife of a powerful businessman.
The plot thickens when he later falls in love with Lisa, the daughter of the same businessman, who is played by Albert Maritz.
Maritz, 58, from Melkbosstrand, is best known for his role as Captain Willie Nagel in the kykNET drama series Orion.
In Liewe Lisa, he brings to life Frans de Wet – a successful, egocentric businessman.
Maritz describes the film as an interesting piece of work by the “brave” Hendrik Cronje who wrote, produced and stars in the lead role.
“It is a new style and hardly ever misses a beat as Hendrik surprises and keeps the audience entertained and on the edge of their seats,” he says.
Maritz admits he had never seen The Graduate, but it is now on his “must see list”.
Maritz first acted professionally at age 12. It was a time before television in South Africa, and he performed on the radio.
“The same year, I acted with my dad, Dawie Maritz, in an amateur stage play in the Bellville civic centre. I hardly ever acted in school plays. I was in an operetta in Grade 7 then only again in Grade 11,” he says.
He was accepted at UCT to study a science degree but changed his mind at the last minute and studied drama at Stellenbosch instead.
Later he was offered a job with PACT (Performing Arts Counsel of the Transvaal) and moved to Johannesburg where he acted in plays and TV films.
“I decided to only work behind the scenes, did multi-camera courses, made independent documentaries and, in 2004, began producing and directing stage plays.”
In 2010 he made two feature films, Lenteblom and Tussen as en Hoop, and wrote Dirk Ligter, which was performed at the KKNK as an open-air production.
His film script, The Boy Behind the Cupboard, is up for grabs and being considered by two international film festivals and two local producers.
In the last year he has played the lead in three series on local screens including NoupadFM, Dwaalster and Alles Malan.
He says last year he felt as if he were retired after making the decision to not direct theatre.
“I wrote movie and TV scripts and landed quite a few television commercials. I found time to watch TV, a few films, and to read. When I moved back to Cape Town from Johannesburg, I wanted to avoid the N1 and that lead me to Melkbosstrand.”
He became an avid perlemoen diver and surfed a massive paddleski and a body board. Now walking the dogs is more of a priority, he says.
“Melkbosstrand is ideal for this, and it is always a bit cooler here, plus I enjoy the fresh air.”