Creators: Aleksandar Popovski and Marija Apchevska, Director: Marija Apchevska, Aleksandar Popovski, Darijan Pejovski and Radovan Petrovic, Produced by Robert Naskov, Production Company: Kino Oko, North Macedonia, Financed by Macedonian Film Agency and Macedonian National Television, Language: Macedonian, 10×20-25′, 2020 Rights: World, excluding Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, regions of Kosovo and Slovenia
Zoki Poki is a TV series based on the book considered to be a classic in Macedonian literature of the same name by the writer Olivera Nikolova, originally published in 1963 by “Detska Radost “, followed by a number of editions. For more than half a century, the book was a mandatory textbook for students in Macedonian primary schools.
The story of the series is contemporary, taking place in the present, but the timeline and spirit of the tales inspired from the book, are captured through the memories of the parents of the “modern” Zoki Poki. Every child can recognize itself in the characters of Zoki Poki and his friends.
Zoki Poki has been translated into multiple languages including Serbian, Romanian, Ukrainian, Czech, Italian, Slovenian, Turkish, Albanian and German.
The story of the series is contemporary, taking place in the present, but the timeline and spirit of the tales inspired from the book, are captured through the memories of the parents of the “modern” Zoki Poki. Every child can recognize itself in the characters of Zoki Poki and his friends. The obstacles he encounters, the things that torment him, the questions that seem unanswerable, the passion, the games, the dreams and the fantasies, his day-to-day life are more or less the same for all of today’s Zoki Poki peers.
The TV series, as well as the novel, deals with the issues and problems associated with childhood – first friendships, loves, disappointments, the naive discovery of the world and the universe, the first confrontation with the problems of the society in which they live. The childish world of Zoki Poki is introduced through events, ups and downs, and the stories are mainly located in the three primary environments where a childhood takes place – the home, the neighbourhood and the school, and of course that magical part of childhood the fourth dimension – the fantasy.
The stories speak of the family relationships, between parents and children, and generally between adults and children, as well as the relationships among friends, with all the specifics that come from the much loved Macedonian book.
Creators Aleksandar Popovski, Marija Apchevska and producer Robert Naskov decided to make Zoki Poki not only because they believe that this cult literary work is relevant for many different generations, but also because of the lack of a homegrown TV program for children. With the desire to return the values that are slowly disappearing, Popovski, Apchevska and Naskov want to create a TV project that will keep the attention of children growing up in today’s “fast” world.
About Olivera Nikolova
Olivera Nikolova was born in 1936 in Skopje in Skopje, Yugoslavia, now the capital of the Republic of North Macedonia. She is considered to be one of the top novelists of her country. She studied in Struga and Veles, and graduated from the Faculty of Philosophy in Skopje. She worked as a playwright on radio and television.
She writes for children and adults. And she has published several popular books for children, among them Zoki Poki that has been translated into Serbian, Romanian, Ukrainian, Czech, Italian, Slovenian, Turkish, Albanian and German.
She has received several awards: three times the Struga Evenings and RTV, twice awarded Writers’ Association of Macedonia, Racin’s recognition, she was twice awarded Novel of the Year, the Yugoslav award “Young Slaughter”, the nomination for the award “Balkanika” and the Dragon Award for special achievements expression of youth literature.
The book has been translated into Serbian, Romanian, Ukrainian, Czech, Italian, Slovenian, Turkish, Albanian and German.