South African Filmmaking

 Take a look at our Top South African Films of 2016

Daniel Dercksen shares a few thoughts with screenwriter and producer Morné Lane, whose film Kampterrein turns a family holiday inside out!




tribe-localTHE TRIBE A young professor consumed by alcoholism is saved from self-destruction by a former school mate and begins a journey to save his house, his marriage and his life. Smanga (Charlie Vundla) is a celebrated young professor at a prominent South African university, whose life quickly unravels when his wife, Laura, leaves him. He spirals into an alcohol, marijuana and sex induced tailspin that places the status of both his career and house in jeopardy. Smanga’s path of self-destruction is interrupted when he meets an old school mate, Jon, (Louis Roux) who is a failed motivational speaker. Taking pity on him, Smanga invites Jon back to his place and a friendship quickly develops. Through their emotionally honest communication Smanga begins the process of healing himself. When Smanga’s wife abruptly returns after being battered by another man things become complicated by an unexpected pregnancy. As the tensions in the house rise, a newly clean Smanga faces a complex decision that will define the lives of his tribe. Produced, written, directed and starring Charlie Vundla. Read more about the film /  Watch the trailer

keeping-up-with-the-kandasamys-2From the producers of Happiness is Four Letter Word, one of South Africa’s most successful films, comes an all new rib-tickling family comedy – Keeping up with the Kandasamys directed by Jayan Moodley (White Gold). The film opens a window into the lifestyle and subculture of modern-day Indian South Africans; their aspirations, dreams, challenges and the things that make them laugh and love


Jagveld 3JAGVELD Emma le Roux is on her way home to the family farm in the Great Karoo. Pretty, soft little Emma, the pacifist primary school teacher. She has made this trip numerous times without incident. But not today. Today her path will cross with Bosman and Baz and Jay. And Boela and AJ and Piet. Bosman is the mastermind of a drug syndicate and a psychopath; he is savage and violent. Baz and Jay are his henchmen – murderers, monsters. AJ and Boela, spoiled brats looking for validation, are on board to make a quick buck in the criminal underworld. And then there’s Piet, the weakling, who is willing to do just about anything for his cousin Bosman. Emma witnesses the murder of a policeman at their hands. And they see her seeing them. Now they’re hunting her down like an animal … she’s easy prey, after all – it’ll all be over soon.The problem is, Emma is the daughter of Jacques le Roux, who taught her everything he knows. And Jacques le Roux was a Recce.Nothing about this hunt is going according to plan; everything is falling apart, and fast. At first they were driven by hate and revenge. Suddenly, it’s survival. The script was written by best-selling author, Deon Meyer and directed by Byron Davis. The cast includes popular local stars Neels van Jaarsveld, Bouwer Bosch, Leandie du Randt and Tim Theron. Read more about the film /   Read review   / Watch the trailer

Kalushi4_webSouth African filmmaker, Mandla Walter Dube, makes his feature directorial debut with the human drama Kalushi – The Solomon Mhlanga Story. Sacrificing his short life, through a brutal death in the hands of South Africa’s apartheid police has made Mahlangu a celebrated struggle hero in the revolutionary fight or freedom.



sallasDaniel Dercksen shares a few thoughts with writer-director Sallas De Jager about his uproarious comedy Jonathan that deals with a dreamer and wannabe stand-up comedian who embarks on a roller coaster journey of self-discovery.



TessTess is a hard-hitting journey into the heart of a young prostitute who sells her soul on the streets of Cape Town. Tracey Farren adapted her novel to film, with Meg Rickards in the director’s chair.




snaaks-genoegSnaaks Genoeg,  an original piece written and directed by David Moore, follows a down-and-out comedian (Casper de Vries) who drifts from one small town to another.




Uga 2Another proud graduate of The Writing Studio, director-writer-producer Uga Carlini, changes lives in a profound way with the poignant documentary Alison, which  won the Best Documentary at the Asia Pacific International Film Festival, after selling out at the Encounters International Film Festival, and wowing crowds at its international premiere at Dances with Films Festival in Los Angeles.


voels-2Daniel Dercksen shares a few thoughts with writer-director Quentin Krog about Vir Die Voëls.  Inspired by a true story, the romantic drama Vir Die Voëls was produced by Huisgenoot, in association with kykNET Films as part of their centenary celebrations in 2016.



jarrod-and-pieterDaniel Dercksen shares a few thoughts with Executive Producers and screenwriters Jarrod de Jong and Pieter Oosthuizen, whose film Eintlik Nog Baie is loaded with a good balance of romance, comedy, suspense, tragedy, and is shining with charisma. Read interview



judy-2Daniel Dercksen shares a few thoughts with writer-director Judy Naidoo, whose sensational film Hatchet Hour marks her directorial debut and is most definitely a landmark on her 20-year journey as an independent filmmaker in South Africa.



shepherdsShepherds and Butchers is the true account of the legal process of capital punishment, and the inhumane treatment of prisoners on death row, which took place during the apartheid era in South Africa. “It’s a film about young people taken by a society, taught how to kill and then left to their own devices,” says director Oliver Schmitz. “



stiaan-smithDaniel Dercksen shares a few thoughts with award-winning actor Stiaan Smith, who stars in the new Afrikaans romantic comedy Sy Klink Soos Lente, and also wrote the screenplay.




koue-kos-2Daniel Dercksen shares a few thoughts with writer-director Etienne Fourie, who caused an uproar with his sensational Die Windpomp, and now wows us with his delightful Dis Koue Kos, Skat, based on the novel by Marita van der Vyver.



John W. FredericksThe riveting Noem My Skollie delivers on the themes of friendship, betrayal, forgiveness, acceptance, the desire for a better life, hope and love, and is set on the Cape Flats and in Pollsmoor prison, based on the life of John W. Fredericks, who also wrote the screenplay at the age of 60.



doras peace 2In Dora’s Peace, a Hillbrow prostitute shields a gifted young boy from the violent clutches of organized crime and discovers aspects of her own lost humanity. Director, producer and editor Kosta Kalarytis, who co-wrote the screenplay of Dora’s Peace with Andrew Herold,  began his career as a cartoonist and illustrator working for The Mail & Guardian and other numerous South African publications.


John BarkerWriter-director John Barker, a proud graduate of The Writing Studio, is turning politics inside out and upside down with his biting independent mockumentary Wonder Boy For President.  




Craig GardnerDaniel Dercksen shares a few thoughts with writer-director Craig Gardner, whose film My Father’s War will help facilitate healing for a generation of men, women and children (now adults) who were deeply affected by the South Africa’s Border War  – on and off the battlefield.



AnitaDaniel Dercksen shares a few thoughts with prolific television producer Anita Le Roux, who wrote the screenplay for the sensational Twee Grade Van Moord and enjoyed its debut at the Indie Karoo Film Festival, where it won the Best Film and Audience awards.



HermanusDaniel Dercksen shares a few thoughts with writer-director Oliver Hermanus, whose third feature film The Endless River takes us to rural South Africa — where anger and sorrow still linger some twenty years after apartheid — and conducts an original and incisive examination of the complex relationship between perpetrator and victim.’



Regardt 2Daniel Dercksen shares a few thoughts with storyteller and storymaker Regardt van den Bergh, whose inspirationalUitvlucht will be screened in competition at the Indie Karoo Film Festival.




Adze_2South African filmmaker Adze Ugah talks about Mrs. Right Guy, a story that will appeal to South Africans, to everyone who has been heartbroken. It’s a story that is specifically about love but has universal appeal that celebrates living in South Africa, in Jozi, in Soweto.




The Writing Studio’s proud graduate Sallas de Jager is winning the hearts of audiences worldwide with his sensational Free State, which he wrote-directed and produced, garnering the Best Director award and Special Jury award for scriptwriting at the Luxor African Film Festival in Egypt last
month, as well as Best Cinematography at the Garden State Film Festival in New Jersey, New York.


Write JourneyMaster The Art Of Visual Narrative: The Write Journey is an interactive course for writers who would like to write a screenplay for feature film or television. Read more




MossieThe sexual awakening of a teenage girl stirs a rousing romance in Mignon Mossie Van Wyk, the latest film from Darrell James Roodt, who recently gave us the romance Trouvoete and the human dramas Treurgrond and Seun.




Henk2Modder & Bloed is a dream come true for The Writing Studio graduate Henk Pretorius. Read more




GraduatesMentoring and tutoring director Bonginhlanhla Ncube and screenwriter Carl Roddam (Safe Bet), producer and filmmaker Henk Pretorius (Modder & Bloed), and director and producer Sallas van der Merwe (Free State), has reaped rewards for Daniel Dercksen, director of  The Writing Studio.  Read more


Abraham2Abraham is undoubtedly one of the best South African films ever made, a profound and consummate masterwork from industry legend, Jans Rautenbach that marks his first film in 30 years. Read more




Stefan Enslin - Strikdas EPKScreenwriter Stefan Enslin reaches for the stars with Verskietende SterRead more




Modder en Bloed 9Review: Modder en Bloed – In this emotional journey into the heart and soul of a war that divided a nation, reconciled revenge forces underdogs to triumph in the spirit of togetherness.  Read more




Sean ElseWriter-director Sean Else talks about Modder en Bloed. Read more




Mr BSafe Bet is a winner for The Writing Studio Graduates:  Director-producer Bonginhlanhla Ncube and screenwriter Carl Roddam




Johnny Breedt 2Writer-director Johnny Breedt talks about Die Ontwaking.Read more





SINK 2Writer-director Brett Michael Innes talks about Sink. Read more





Bongiwe Selane is an award winning producer with credits behind her that include Culture Shock, the 2013 SAFTA winner for best reality show, Best South African Short Film at DIFF in 2015 for the short film, Unomalanga and The Witch. Her producing credits include New Directions – M-Net’s skills development initiative that she headed for 8 years which saw the production of over 30 short films across the African continent. She also produced a documentary series called Great Africans for Africa Magic Entertainment. Broadcast in 2014, the series profiled African icons including Nelson Mandela, Julius Nyerere, Wole Soyinka and Wangari Maathai. Bongiwe is currently producing the NFVF’s Female Only Filmmaker project, a series of short narrative films by women filmmakers. Happiness is a Four-Letter- Word is her first feature film.

Award-winning producer Bongiwe Selane talks about Happiness is a Four -Letter Word. Read more




Man soos PaThe deeply moving ‘n Man Soos My Pa is one of those exceptional films steeped in the tradition of classic films like East Of Eden that grabs hold of you emotionally and never lets go. Read more




Vir AltydDarling superstars of the local film and TV industry, Ivan Botha and Donnalee Roberts, who charmed filmgoers in Pad Na You Hart, and sizzle in their latest charmer Vir Altyd (Forever) which they wrote and co-produced. Read more




Koos-Roets-600x450Writer-director Koos Roets talks about ‘n Pawpaw Vir My Darling.Read more






Director Sarah Blecher talks about Dis Ek, Anna. Read more