Thursday, September 16, 2021

Netflix contributes R5,5 million towards Black Creatives Empowerment


Two-thirds of the funding will go towards film & TV scholarships and cancelling student debts while the rest will be donated to the Independent Black Filmmakers Collective

On 16 September 2021, Netflix, the world’s leading entertainment streaming service,  announced a commitment of $400 000 USD (approx. R5.5 million) in the form of a grant and creation of scholarships to extend the support for Black representation in the Film & TV industry to the creative ecosystem in South Africa. 

The Netflix Black Creatives Empowerment Fund will be implemented in a two-pronged approach: the first being a $100,000 (approx. R1.4 million) grant in benefit of The Independent Black Filmmakers Collective  NPC (IBFC), with the second being $300,000 (approx. R4.4 million) designated towards funding full scholarships at higher education institutions in South Africa to support the formal qualification and training of aspiring Black creatives in the film and TV disciplines. 

“We recognise that being part of the local creative community in South Africa also comes with responsibilities, in particular the need to develop the talent pipeline and give new voices the chance to be heard,” says Ben Amadasun, Director of Content for Netflix in Africa. “Talent development is extremely important to us and we will continue to work with the industry in South Africa to support and develop new opportunities to grow the creative community.”

The $300,000 fund will provide financial assistance through full scholarships and graduate debt relief at higher educational institutions in South Africa to support the formal qualification and training of aspiring Black creatives in the film and TV disciplines. Institutions where qualifying students will be able to apply for scholarships and where debt relief opportunities will be available include: 

  • University of Cape Town

  • University of the Witwatersrand

  • University of Johannesburg

  • University of Pretoria

  • University of KwaZulu-Natal

  • Cape Peninsula University of Technology

  • Durban University of Technology

  • Tshwane University of Technology

  • AFDA

  • Boston Media House

  • AACA Film and Acting School

  • CityVarsity

Netflix will again be working in partnership with social investment fund management and advisory firm Tshikululu Social Investments, as the implementing partner/fund administrator with the responsibility of supporting the outreach and execution of the project. In July 2020 and March 2021, Tshikululu worked closely with Netflix, the South African Screen Federation (SASFED) and their member organisation, Independent Producers Organisation (IPO), to create the COVID-19 Film and Television Relief Fund that helped the hardest hit workers in the South African creative community.

From the 17th of September 2021,students interested in applying for the fully-funded scholarships will be able to find additional information, application criteria and will be able to apply online on Tshikululu’s website (


Editor’s Note:

About IBFC:

The Independent Black Filmmakers Collective (IBFC) is a membership-based non-profit entity that was established in late 2017 as collaborative business-to-business networking and advocacy group, comprised of wholly black-owned South African film and television companies, independent filmmakers, content creators, film, television and commercials directors and producers, marketers, exhibitors, distributors, media and entertainment facility owners, services industrialists and entrepreneurs. IBFC was born out of a multiplicity of voices spanning over 25 years, and representing three generations of black film practitioners who have contributed meaningfully in shaping the industry and its visual narratives and aesthetics. IBFC’s vision is to accelerate transformation, enterprise development, increase investment, export, trade and job creation to contribute to the national economy, while engaging government, business and industry stakeholders in issues such as policy development and strategic growth of the audio-industry as “one voice”

About Tshikululu:

Established in 1998, Tshikululu is South Africa’s leading social investment fund manager and advisor, working alongside investors and other development partners to maximise the power of social investment. We define social investment as any financial commitment – from grant making to impact investing – that seeks to drive and measure social impact. Our service offering is underpinned by a deep and hands-on understanding of the complexities of development and social investment. As agents of social change, we partner with our clients throughout South Africa to realise their social investment goals. Over more than two decades, we have operated in every province in the country, covering urban and rural areas, and collaborated with social investors in various industries including mining, financial services, the creative economy, renewable energy, property development, banking, insurance, healthcare and logistics.

About Netflix:

Netflix is the world's leading streaming entertainment service with over 209 million paid memberships in over 190 countries enjoying TV series, documentaries and feature films across a wide variety of genres and languages. Members can watch as much as they want, anytime, anywhere, on any internet-connected screen. Members can play, pause and resume watching, all without commercials or commitments.

SAGA's position on the Vaccine


Monday, September 13, 2021

Reminder: Sage Mid-Year Payroll Tax Update Webinar



Reminder:  Mid-Year Payroll Tax Update Webinar

Book your seat

Join Payroll Expert Rob Cooper for a not to be missed Payroll event

Starting with the hard lockdowns of March 2020, then extending into 2021 with the Covid-19 third wave, and followed by the July 2021 riots and looting, the payroll world has experienced the most tumultuous period of high-pressure legislation changes in memory to accommodate these disasters.

Some topics that will be discussed:
  • Home Office Expenses – Latest information
  • Long Service Awards - Review of the fringe benefit
  • Employment Tax Incentive – Important backdated changes to curb abuse
  • Retirement Fund Contribution – Simplification of the Fringe Benefit calculation
  • Mid-year tax certificates – 2021 Requirements and Proposed penalties for non-submission
In a practical and down-to-earth presentation, the webinar will bring you up to date and help you with these changes as well as looking ahead as best we can in these uncertain times.
Book your seat


Available Dates:

Date: September 2021
Times: 09:00 - 12:30
Host(s): Rob Cooper

About the presenter


Rob Cooper

Rob Cooper completed his in Computer Science at the University of Pretoria in 1971. Many years of design and programming of various financial systems followed, including the development of payroll systems for different environments.

He was one of the founders of VIP Payroll (1986) – now known as Sage – and spent many years developing world class payroll systems and taking the Sage business to new heights.

Over the last fifteen years, his focus has been on the numerous pieces of legislation that govern the employment and payroll industry and he is a respected expert, presenting at tax seminars and workshops.

Wednesday, September 8, 2021

SAGE Rough Cut Lab-Fiction 2021 call out for submissions


Rough Cut Lab - fiction edition 2021
SAGE is piloting this inaugural Rough Cut Lab for fiction, building on the success of the virtual documentary Rough Cut Lab earlier this year.

This first virtual fiction edition will allow our most experienced feature editors to mentor and engage with emerging filmmakers, focussing on editors and directors with a suitable project already in post-production.

Rough Cut Labs allow access to expert industry advice and feedback during the final editing stages of a project, and have proven instrumental in shaping the success of feature films as they enter the marketplace.

solving problems    telling stories
Three South African feature film projects - consisting of one editor and one director - will be selected to spend 5 days with world-class consultants, with input and feedback using Zoom and video review and collaboration platform

This call is only open to projects with a working rough cut, with up to 70% to be completed prior to the Lab, which will take place virtually from mid-November 2021.

The application deadline is 22nd October 2021.

Submission criteria:
  • One-page synopsis of the feature film;
  • Script;
  • The director and editor’s biographies;
  • The current rough cut should be in a digital format easy to share, preferably online with the link and password provided, if applicable;
  • One page each from the director and editor outlining the difficulties currently experienced with the film and / or problematic areas in the story. Please include what has been achieved up to this point;
  • Films need to be independent and feature length - 70 minutes or above (so not commissioned from a broadcaster or streaming service);
  • Submissions that do not adhere to the criteria will not be considered.
All submissions will be treated with utmost confidentiality by the
SAGE selection panel.





Position: Part-time (20 hours per week)

Duration: 8 months

Experience level: mid-senior experience level with a minimum of 5 years experience in production or education of documentary film


The Documentary Filmmakers’ Association would like to employ a programme manager. This person would be required to:

  • have a good understanding of key stakeholders specific to the documentary industry both in terms of processes and policies;
  • form relationships with these key stakeholders and be aware of any opportunities or gaps that need to be addressed by the DFA,
  • attend industry stakeholders’ meetings on behalf of the DFA;
  • feedback to the board and make recommendations where required;
  • understand the specific needs of the documentary genre
  • create visibility and support for the organisation and the sector
  • serve when required, as a spokesperson for the DFA in these engagements;
  • help promote the organisation, its members, and its objectives;
  • provide the organisation with necessary policy research and legislation that impact documentary filmmakers.
  • identify funding opportunities in order to support the development of future initiatives by the DFA.
  • Draft input documents that reflect the position of the DFA as required.


  • A  level 6 qualification in or demonstrable equivalent experience as documentary filmmaker
  • Demonstrable experience as a documentary filmmaker
  • Must have own computer, workspace and uncapped internet connection for remote work

The following will be advantageous :

  • Experience in film production or training
  • Experience working in industry organisations

Timeframe & remuneration: 

  • Between September 2021 and April 2022
  • This is a freelance, part-time position
  • Remuneration to be negotiated based on qualification(s), experience and candidate scope of work estimate

To apply, please e-mail the below documents in a single pdf file with the subject “DFA programme manager application ” to

- Cover letter

- Curriculum Vitae (CV) 

- Filmmography where relevant (may include links to previous work online)

- Reference letter(s) and contact details for 2 references


An application which does not comply with the above requirements will be regarded as incomplete. Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted. They will be invited to an interview that will include timed and evaluated completion of a relevant task. 


Closing date: 12:00 (midday) Friday, 10 September 2021

Please note that interviews will be conducted on 15 September 2021. Remuneration in line with qualification(s) and experience

Please note

No person currently serving as a member of the DFA board can apply. DFA is committed to transforming the Documentary film industry to be more representative of race, gender and disability.

How to join the DFA:

Visit the DFA webpage and submit a membership form

Membership options:
FULL MEMBER        - R350

Membership Notes:

Membership renewal fees will be invoiced annually to all members (after the member first joins), by the incoming board. Membership will fall due immediately to continue to qualify as a member of the organisation. The DFA is VAT and TAX exempt due to its NPO status and you may claim certain NPO contributions in your tax.

Wednesday, August 25, 2021

WGSA Hot Minds and Cold Nights Head For Spring Fever


WGSA Online Classes
Special Offers On WGSA Membership Fees
Until End Of September 2021

The WGSA is offering an exciting online programme via Zoom to WGSA members free of charge, and to Non-Members at R50 per session!

Please RSVP below for the sessions you wish to attend in order to receive the Zoom Link, which will be sent to you 24 hours prior to the session.  Closing date for RSVP’s is at noon, two (2) days before the session. 

We have a 
SPECIAL OFFER for non-members that serves to counter the economic effect that Covid-19 and the lockdowns have on performance writers: 50% discount on membership fees until the end of September!

As a member you will have an opportunity to showcase your profile on our website, enter the WGSA Muse Awards and allow free access to our upcoming 
WGSA Indigenous Language Screenwriters Course in September, among other great benefits.

Full members:

Regular fee

Now only

Candidate members: Regular fee

Now only

Student members (with a valid student registration):
Regular fee

Now only

Corporate members:
Regular fee

Now only

When you click on JOIN you will learn more about the different types of membership, as well as see the other benefits of joining the guild and specials that guild members receive on products such as Final Draft screenwriting software, and IMDb Pro, etc.

If you have any questions, please send an email to




In her 20-year strong creative journey, Mmabatho has worked as a producer, broadcaster (SABC, Kwese TV, TopTV), development executive as well as a script consultant. Roles that have harnessed her love for story and helping writers find their voice as storytellers. Her catalogue of work, as a script consultant, ranges from novel adaptations to politically potent films brought to life through titles such KALUSHI: THE SOLOMON MAHLANGU STORY, and the sequel to HAPPINESS IS A FOUR LETTER WORD - HAPPINESS EVER AFTER.

Mmabatho’s creative flair has also been injected outside South Africa as a consultant on the award-winning Lesotho based film THIS IS NOT A BURIAL, IT'S A RESURRECTION (Venice Biennale College Cinema 2019, Visionary Award winner Sundance 2019).

In 2017 Mmabatho was invited to co-mentor in REALNESS, a Pan-African writing residency. Beyond Realness; she has mentored on the Canal+  Poland Series Lab (2021), The Philippines (Full Circle Lab 2019 and 2020), Maisha Producers Lab (Uganda 2019), Jumpstart PRODUIRE AU SUD (South Africa 2019 and 2020), For Film’s Sake- Attagirl Lab (Australia 2020), The Pro Series Lab (Kenya 2020), BoostNL (Netherlands Film Festival/IFFR 2020), Dramatic Producer’s Lab (Ethiopia 2019).

In addition to being a mentor, she has had the honour of being invited to participate in The Torino Script Lab (2018), EAVE (European Audio Visual Entrepreneurs 2020) and The Rotterdam Producer’s Lab (2020).


Julie Hall is a screenwriter, script consultant, lecturer and voice over artist. Julie worked as a broadcaster and copywriter before moving into TV scriptwriting in the late nineties. She spent five years on the scriptwriting team of GENERATIONS, then moved into script editing with stints on long-running series like BACKSTAGE and MUVHANGO.
In 2005 Julie was selected to participate in the year-long Sediba Feature Film Development Programme as a Script Editor. This was a career and life-changing move and Julie has continued with the Sediba programme ever since. Two consecutive years followed with the Sediba-SABC Development Programme which saw the development and production of high-end mini series.

In 2007, Julie ran an animation script development and training programme called APTI.

Julie continued writing, storylining, editing and headwriting for television on a variety of dramas and sitcoms. As headwriter she also oversaw the development of many made-for-TV films for Mzansi Magic’s Lokshin Bioscope, working with emerging writers. Most recently she was the headwriter for Season 2 of the highly popular TEMPY PUSHAS.

As a feature film writer, Julie has written the romantic-comedy, MY ZULU WEDDING, offbeat comedy-romance MAGIC & MINING, and has co-written psychological thriller THE DAM.

Julie is a mentor/facilitator for the NFVF’s Sediba-SPARK narrative screenwriting programme and is the current Discipline Chair of Screenwriting at AFDA Johannesburg. She consults as a script editor on a number of feature film projects, with a special interest in animated features. 


Neiloe spent 7 years working in the production and development department of the National Film and Video Foundation. She spearheaded the documentary program at the foundation as a manager. She also sat on the panel of various festivals and evaluation panels. Whitehead was part of the Eurodoc International program in 2011. Part of her duties at the foundation included overseeing TV formats, development and production content both fiction and non-fiction.

She has experience in commissioning content, curating and managing project budgets. She graduated from Rhodes University with a BJourn and majored in political science. She has since done post graduate work at the Witwatersrand University and the University of Cape Town. She worked with Fireworx media as a development executive. She worked as a project manager on an incubation project for the Association of Transformation in Film and Television from 2015 till the end of 2016.

Whitehead has worked with various funds, film festivals, television broadcasters both locally and internationally and has sat on various evaluation panels for funding. She is currently working as a freelance writer (SIGNAL HIGH, uBETTINA WHETHU), script editor, evaluation expert and creative producer. She is co-owner of Black Seed Film Hub, a black female led production company. The Hub is running a 2021 digital content creation program. She has script edited on a number of feature films, short films and documentaries. She is currently in pre-production for her first short film, LEFUMA & PHEELLO.


Veteran Producer-Directo-Writer,  Richard, has shot, directed, produced or written more than one thousand hours of programming for both South African and International broadcast television. His experience in genre is wide and varied, and includes Drama, Comedy, Documentary, Variety, Sport, Travel, soft News and Magazine, and Children’s Programmes.

He has worked extensively in Broadcast Television, Feature Films and on stage. His work has been nominated for, and won, awards both locally and internationally. Richard is the recipient of two Writers Guild of South Africa Muse awards, and from time to time provides legal guidance to both private individuals and the WGSA Council and its’ members. He also works as a consultant to both production companies and individuals in the film and television industry. Over the years he has served on many industry representative bodies including the DAFTA, the IPO,  the WGSA and the NFVF Council. He is proud to say that his latest project is the performance writer’s incubator: The Scribe Writers Room. A  project designed for both aspirant and experienced writers. 



Five emerging writers are invited to share their experiences of unfair payments, which is then discussed by the group and input given by the panel of professionals.
During the final 30 minutes, Peter Goldsmid will advise on what clauses are crucial to have in screenwriting contracts and why.



Cati Weinek

Cati has raised finance for both fiction and documentary films, such THE LETTER READER (2019), THE TOKOLOSHE (2018), and MRS RIGHT GUY (2016). Career highlights other than producing beautifully crafted feature films, includes engaging with the Writers Guild of America, and the international affiliation to bring South African writers into the fold, conducting over 100 interviews for her Memory Box initiative (2003) at the biggest Soweto hospital supporting HIV positive South Africans before the roll out of ARVs; her anti-nuclear documentary, URANIUM ROAD (2009),  which changed nuclear policy in SA; raising slate feature film funding from the National Film and Video Foundation, creating the National Film and Video Foundation’s ground-breaking Sediba script development programme, producing 26 episodes of the last season of SOUL CITY, raising finance for 3 D feature length animation film with presales across Europe and being a parent to two born free babies.

Dr. Eubulus Timothy

Among other things, Dr Eubulus Timothy is an award winning writer, director and producer of film and television, founding chair of the Cape Film Commission, served two terms as vice chairperson of Writer’s Guild Of South Africa and chaired the judging of the Best Screenplay and Best Feature Film for the SAFTA’s and for the Oscars Foreign film for South Africa.  He wrote and directed the highly acclaimed feature film, DEEP END. 

During lockdown, Eubulus interpreted and directed VIVALDI'S SPRING IN THE TIME OF COVID-19 for Baroque 2000. 
In South Africa he directed the feature film OTHELLO and numerous short films,  and produced Cape Night Live, which introduced Mark Lottering to South African television audiences.  Eubulus directed numerous dramas for the SABC. He started a Performance School in Cape Town with pass students including South African Idol Heinz Winckler and actress Kim Engelbrecht.  Produced and directed major events for South African Embassies and Commissions around the world including the TSOTSI Pre-Oscar Party at The Beverley Hilton in Beverly Hills.  
Harley-Merrill Screenwriting Award - Hollywood  
Simon Sabela Film and TV Award - Best Picture 
Simon Sabela Film and TV Award - Best Director  
South African International Film Awards - Best Screenplay 


Peter Goldsmid

Following degrees in Politics from Wits and Oxford and a B.A. (Photographic Arts) from the Polytechnic of Central London, Peter entered the industry as a film editor, but soon went on to produce and direct, first as an employee of SABC TV and thereafter through his own company, Southern Exposure.  

Awards include Vita Awards for Best Feature Best Screenwriting (for THE ROAD TO MECCA) a film also nominated for Best Direction. In 2016, my screenplay of THE LOVE SONGS OF NATHAN J SWIRKSY won the WGSA Muse Award for best unproduced fiction feature script. 
Peter is drawn to stories with a human rights theme. He has written, directed and produced more than 70 hours of prime time television for SABC TV and have written and directed a documentary and dramas for other African countries. His SABC work includes four seasons of a human rights legal drama series, JUSTICE FOR ALL, a sitcom and a drama miniseries on forced removals, RIEMVASMAAK,  that won SAFTA awards for Production, Directing and Scriptwriting.   

Training and mentoring have always been an adjunct to his work. He has run training courses for the SABC (studio direction) and the WGSA. He teaches screenwriting and television writing at AFDA Film School (Cape Town). 

He has been a judge for the SAFTAs and Muse Awards and was on a panel that selected the South African feature for the Oscars.  Along with Richard Nosworthy, he holds the legal portfolio of the WGSA. 

His company has recently provided the NFVF with an Advanced Course for Screenwriters & Script Editors.  

Peter says, "I know what it’s like to be a writer for hire: I’ve written and/or storylined for shows like SCANDAL, Z'BONDIWE, RING OF LIES and END GAME. Writing can be a lonely business."


Torchwood is a literary agency for film and television representing screenwriters, directors and producers worldwide. With roots in London and Dublin and offices in Johannesburg and Cape Town Torchwood offers their clients unparalleled access to the global screen industries. Managing Partners Aoife Lennon-Ritchie and David Kayser have a combined twenty years’ experience representing above-the-line talent negotiating and advocating on behalf of their list of emerging and established talent. Torchwood fiercely believes in the power of storytelling and the importance of empowering creatives to do what they do best by nurturing and protecting careers.

As well as working with her Torchwood film and television talent, Aoife runs the Lennon-Ritchie agency which represents authors internationally and sells film rights and international publishing rights on behalf of South African and overseas publishing houses including Penguin Random House South Africa, Pan Macmillan South Africa, Quivertree Publications South Africa and Duck Creek Press New Zealand. With an acute focus on under-represented voices and stories, Aoife is committed to motivating and advocating for the best possible deal for her clients.

David Kayser is a literary agent based in Johannesburg South Africa. He spent the best part of the last decade in London at Casarotto Ramsay & Associates Ltd, one of the world’s leading creative agencies, representing both emerging and internationally acclaimed writers, directors and Heads of Department across film, television & theatre. He launched Torchwood Literary & Scouting with partner Aoife Lennon-Ritchie in 2020 and together they have a growing list of writers/directors/producers and script editors across South Africa, the continent and beyond. David is proud to have nurtured and advised talent both in-house and at festivals and organisations such as London’s BFI Flare Festival, BFI S.O.U.L, BAFTA Guru, The Cape Town International Film Market & Festival, pan-African screenwriting residency the Realness Institute and the UK’s leading film schools including the NFTS. David studied at Rhodes University and The Oxford School of Drama, was mentored by industry stalwart Rachel Holroyd and has worked alongside multiple Academy nominated and BAFTA winning writers and directors.


Phathu Makwarela is an award-winniing South African producer, and content creator, a.k.a. a showrunner.

Originally his parents wished for him to pursue a career as an engineer and he completed a motor mechanics course and passed.

But fortunately for us, "he begged his uncle to assist him in persuading his parents to let him pursue a career in television."

He now co-owns Tshedza Pictures, with Gwydion Beynon. The company’s best work includes the creation of 1Magic’s telenovela, THE RIVER, the brainchild of the young creative writer, which won 11 Golden Horns at the 14th SAFTAs and received an International Emmy Award nomination.

Other Phathu Makwarela shows under Tshedza Pictures are:

  • LEGACY, a new M-Net telenovela that premiered in September 2020
  • THE REPUBLIC on Mzansi Magic
  • IGAZI GIYANI: LAND OF BLOOD, a Xitsonga series on SABC2
  • THE QUEEN on Mzansi Magic
  • GOMORA on Mzansi Magic

Remember to RSVP before noon, two days prior to the event.

Non-members: please make a payment to our bank account and upload the proof of payment on the RSVP form
WGSA Banking Details
FNB Business Account
Branch No: 250655  / Randparkridge
Account No: 62886952467
REFERENCE:  Please use "PDP / your name and surname"

The WGSA recognizes the dire impact of Covid-19 on our film, television and theatre industry and values all frontline health workers as well as those in our industry that continue to go to work to bring us news and entertainment.  For your COVID-19 Vaccine Registration go to: