Kokstad siblings become first Africans to screen at top VR competition

Kokstad siblings become first Africans to screen at top VR competition

The Lost Botanist, co-directed by the Kokstad-raised sister and brother "Ree and Rick Treweek" has become the first virtual reality experience from A

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The Lost Botanist, co-directed by the Kokstad-raised sister and brother “Ree and Rick Treweek” has become the first virtual reality experience from Africa to screen in competition at the world’s most prestigious animation festival, Annecy.

 The Lost Botanist was one of the nine VR experiences competing at Annecy, with 90 submissions from nearly 30 countries.

Ree was one of two female directors in the VR category at Annecy. The Lost Botanist marked her second film in competition at the festival, 12 years after “The Blackheart Gang’s The Tale Of How” kick-started her career by winning a Special Distinction Cristal in 2007.

The Lost Botanist is a collaboration between Rick’s Johannesburg-based emerging technology research and development house, Eden Labs, and Ree’s Cape Town-based creative studio, Tulips & Chimneys.

Quoting Africa’s most awarded animation director, Ree

“I’ve always wanted to create a world that people could step into, a visual world people could be immersed in and lost in, so for me The Lost Botanist is an absolute dream comes true”.

She is also one of Africa’s most watched animation directors, as she is recognized everywhere ranging from the Clios to Clermont-Ferrand, to the London International Awards to New York Festival, among others.

Her Animation, Amumu: The Curse of the Sad Mummy, her League of Legends short film for Riot Games, has over 18m YouTube views.

The siblings plan to extend The Lost Botanist with additional levels in the immersive experience; a spinoff film; an augmented reality game and a merchandise range that includes toys, adult coloring books, and puzzles.

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The Lost Botanist continues its festival run at New Images Festival currently run until 23 June 2019 in Paris, France, where it was selected from 109 applications from 21 countries.