News and updates about SKIN

When I started planning the UK premiere with the team from our chosen charity, FilmAid (, I confessed to one of the organisers that I had two major fears: the first was that no one would turn up. The second was that we would be overrun and many would be denied entry. By what seemed like a miracle on that sweltering July evening, the house was packed - and everyone got a seat.

What's more, pretty much everyone I'd hoped might be there actually came and walked the red carpet: Sophie Okonedo, Alice Krige and Sandra Laing; (sadly, Sam Neill was in New Zealand and couldn't get away, but he sent his best wishes - and beautiful daughter - instead); Alan Rickman, Susannah York, Miriam Margolyes, Graham Norton, Greta Scacchi, Maryam D'Abo, Hugh Hudson, Moira Stuart, Edward and Fred Fox, Baroness Lola Young, Dame Emma Kirkby, Stephen Isserlis, Christopher Hogwood - and several other long-time supporters of the project, many of whom had witnessed the long struggle to bring this story to the screen.

I asked Sophie and Alice to come on to the stage at the end of my introduction; I reminded the audience that this was a true story - but wanted to keep Sandra's presence there as a surprise. As soon as the end credits were over, I asked Sandra to join me on stage and, as in Toronto, Dubai and Los Angeles - everyone in the auditorium leapt to their feet. It is immensely gratifying for Sandra, who has suffered so much, to receive a standing ovation at every premiere she has attended. And to be told afterwards that people admire her strength and courage. People lingered long after the screening and Q&A, wanting to talk about the film - chatting inside the cinema, and out into the street. May they keep talking. And tell all their friends about the UK release - our first! - 24th July.

Comments(5)Add Comment
Roxanna Panufnik
July 13, 2009

I can’t find the words to say how moved I was by Skin -– was blubbing throughout. It'’s such a beautiful film and the vibe in the cinema when Sandra Laing came up to the stage was incredible.

You got really stellar performances out of all the actors and the whole thing looked and sounded stunning. Many, many congratulations - I shall certainly spread the word!

Roxanna Panufnik

Tim Whittaker
July 12, 2009

I was spellbound. Not only is it a really beautiful film cinematically, it is so heart-felt and erudite. I was so moved by it that I just needed to be alone afterwards.

Believe me when I say this is a masterpiece. I am the man on the street when it comes to films - I haven't stopped talking about it since I came home!

Tim Whittaker

Alphege Bell
July 11, 2009

There is a temptation in this fast moving, post Obama, post apartheid world that these stories which define a time are airbrushed out of the human narrative of South Africa. Skin is an outstanding fusion of archive and art. It is polemic without preaching too hard. It confronts some hard truths of life without being crushing. It is, at times, surprisingly tender. Great all round ensemble performances. Sophie more than serves the script she nails the character, accent and physicality of the performance with authority.

Well done Tony this film deserves to be seen - shine your light for the world to see!


Phillida Purves
July 11, 2009

HUGE congratulations, Tony. You created something stunning and unforgettable. In the longer term, South Africa under apartheid may only be a little quirk of history, but what you encapsulated was most powerful, touching on universal truths and all human relationships. I sincerely hope that SKIN is getting the attention it deserves.

Phillida Purves

Steve Cabrera
July 11, 2009

Congratulations Anthony - well deserved!
All the best in sharing this important and beautiful story to as many people as possible.

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