Elysian Films has produced one feature film, five short films, four documentaries and over a dozen promotional films.

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elysian films - SkinTrio
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elysian films - SkinTrio elysian films - PetrusSandra elysian films - Sophie Okonedo

Based on the true story of Sandra Laing, a "coloured" girl born to two white Afrikaner parents, unaware of their black ancestry.


The film stars Sophie Okonedo as Sandra Laing, Sam Neill as her father Abraham and Alice Krige as her mother Sannie.


10 year-old Sandra is distinctly African looking, though light-skinned. Her parents are shopkeepers in a remote area of the Eastern Transvaal: white Afrikaners who, despite Sandra’s mixed-race appearance, have lovingly brought her up as their ‘white’ little girl.

They send her to the local boarding school, where her brother has gone before her. Yet other parents, teachers and children object to Sandra’s ‘African’ features, and she is made painfully aware of being different. The school principal soon has her examined by government officials, reclassified as ‘coloured’, and expelled.

Sandra’s parents are shocked and horrified. Her father Abraham fights all the way to the Supreme Court to get her classified white again. Despite signing affidavits confirming that he and his wife are Sandra’s parents, and creating a media furore, Abraham loses the case. But international pressure forces the laws to change in South Africa – and Sandra is officially reclassified white.


Yet Sandra knows she will never belong in a white world, as defined by apartheid. At 17, she falls in love with Petrus – a black vegetable seller. It is a forbidden passion and her father (Abraham) threatens to shoot Petrus and disown Sandra. Her mother (Sannie) also disapproves of the relationship, but is torn between her husband’s rage and her daughter’s predicament.



elysian films - SYNOPSIS

Elysian Films / Bard Entertainments / Moonlighting Films

SA / UK 2008


 The World Premiere of Skin took place at the Toronto International Film Festival, 7th September 2008. The film went on to be shown at dozens of festivals around the world and has won 22 international awards.


It has had cinema releases in the UK, USA, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand and is available on DVD through Amazon.com.


elysian films - RELEASE

Awards for Skin


Los Angeles Pan African (Audience and Jury Awards)

AFI Dallas (Audience Award)

Palm Beach (Jury Award, Best Film)

Rochester High Falls (Audience Award)

Tri-Continental, Africa/Asia/Latin America (Audience Award)

Mediterrante (Bari), Italy (Best Film)

Moondance, USA (Best Score, Hélène Muddiman)

Accolade Award For Excellence (Original Score Hélène Muddiman)

United Nations Time For Peace Award (Voted by 21 UN Abassadors)

Amnesty International Humanitarian Award (Italy)

Griffon Environmental Award (Giffoni, Italy)

Orange Film Prize, Ability Media International Awards

MAE Moseac Award for Best Independent Film

MAE Moseac Award for Best Actress (Sophie Okonedo)

Bahamas, Rising Star Award, Sophie Okonedo

Bordeaux Cinema Science (Grand Jury Prize)

Afrika Film Festival, Leuven, Belgium (Audience Award)

Belize International Film Festival (Audience Award)

Tbilisi Film Festival, Georgia (Human Rights and Peace Award)

South African Film and Video Awards (SAFTAS), Best Cinematographer in a Feature Film
, Dewald Aukema


In addition, SKIN has received the following nominations:


British Independent Film Award, Best Actress (Sophie Okonedo)

NAACP Image Awards (Outstanding Foreign Film and Best Actress, Sophie Okonedo)

Black Reel Awards (Sophie Okonedo, Best Actress)

Political Film Society, (Best Film)

World Soundtrack Awards, Discovery of the year 2010 (Hélène Muddiman)

Ivor Novello Awards, Best Score 2010 (Hélène Muddiman)

elysian films - AWARDS
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