Private Project

Viva Dada

A documentary about a documentarian struggling to make a documentary about a book that might not have existed. “We are going to make a documentary about a missing book, what could be more simple?” What starts as a simple challenge leads to a struggle with creativity, depression and a memory of suicide. Almost ten years after making the documentary Porsellynkas, writer Sjaka Septembir and film maker Matthew Kalil set off on a journey to find a book that Sjaka wrote in the 90s. But there are no copies to be found anywhere. Their quest takes them back to both their childhood homes and memories come flooding back.

  • Matthew Kalil
    Porselynnkas Documentary
  • Matthew Kalil
  • Sjaka Septembir
    Key Cast
  • Jurie Senekal
  • Pete O'Donaghue
    Sound Design
  • Project Type:
  • Genres:
    Observational, comedy, experimental, self-referential, art
  • Runtime:
    45 minutes 38 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    November 17, 2021
  • Production Budget:
    166 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    South Africa
  • Country of Filming:
    South Africa
  • Language:
    Afrikaans, English
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
  • Vrystaat Kunstefees
    South Africa
    November 22, 2021
    South African Permiere
Director Biography - Matthew Kalil

Matthew Kalil is a writer, director, script editor, author and speaker. He has written and co-written over 40 produced episodes of TV and has received various grants, development funding and awards. Matthew’s productions have been screened and broadcast in Canada, Denmark, Morocco, New Zealand, Puerto Rico, Kenya, South Africa, Thailand, the United States and the United Kingdom. Since receiving his MA in Screenwriting, he has been teaching, writing and mentoring students for over 20 years. Matthew has developed a unique system of screenwriting theory that helps beginners as well as established screenwriters get in touch with their creative core. His book, The Three Wells of Screenwriting, published by Michael Wiese productions with a foreword by Christopher Vogler, has been describes as a “breakthrough in the writing craft.” His workshops have touched and inspired thousands of participants and his gentle and insightful script editing guidance has helped many writers realize the stories they were always trying to tell. A charismatic speaker, Matthew has enjoyed presenting many times at the London Screenwriting Festival, the Cape Town International Animation Festival and the University Film and Video Association. Matthew is currently an Associate Professor at the David Lynch MFA in screenwriting in the USA.

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Director Statement

South Africa has a disproportionally high suicide rate. This story addresses that in a very round about way. I think one of the solutions (or more) to depression are contained in this film. It's based on a notion I have always had that art is not art. The real art is what happens when the art is being made. The process of making it. The struggles to get up in the morning and be creative. This story (framed around the theme of looking for a missing book) is an exploration of that notion.