Try Revolution tells the story of how the 1981 Springbok Tour of New Zealand impacted on South Africa.
In this one hour documentary South Africans from Archbishop Desmond Tutu through to ordinary rugby fans talk about how the games, the images, the reports and the conversations that surrounded “The Tour” affected them personally and helped to change the apartheid system.
The 1981 Springbok Tour of New Zealand had been greatly anticipated by the rugby mad white community of South Africa.
New Zealand was their most cherished rival and this tour was going to be live on television…a first for South Africa.
So when they tuned into the first broadcast, the Hamilton match, and saw hundreds of protestors standing on the field they went into a kind of collective shock.
Try Revolution explores what happened over the ensuing months and indeed years as the impact of the “The Tour” was fully realised.
From a prison mate of Nelson Mandela to the Captain of the ’81 Springboks, the documentary uncovers how the actions of the New Zealand protestors were perceived, understood, and used to help in the struggle against the apartheid regime.
Produced and directed by Leanne Pooley
We’d be having a beer and actually discussing the politics behind the rugby and not just the fact that somebody had run onto the field and that we should just drag them off, beat them up and toss them into the back of a van.
— South African Rugby Fan
To see strife between families in New Zealand and how it really ripped the country apart, well I think that’s quite bad and then realising this isn’t the way it should be. that was big eye opener.”
–Wynand Claasen, Springbok Captain 1981
“You really can’t even compute its value, it said the world has not forgotten us, we are not alone”
— Archbishop Desmond Tutu
Watch a video excerpt from Try Revolution Television, 2006 NZ Onscreen if the video embedded below isn’t viewable on your browser or device. (3 clips Available from NZOnscreen.)