SCHUKS TSHABALALA’S SURVIVAL GUIDE TO SOUTH AFRICA 2010
OUT OF AFRICA ENTERTAINMENT and INDIGENOUS FILM DISTRIBUTION in association with THE INDUSTRIAL DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION (South Africa) and LEON SCHUSTER presents An OUT OF AFRICA Production
Starring LEON SCHUSTER & ALFRED NTOMBELA
“SCHUKS TSHABALALA’S SURVIVAL GUIDE TO SOUTH AFRICA 2010”
Costumes designed by MARIA HOFMEYR Line Producer ANGELA PHILLIPS
Edited by JOHAN ‘LADS’ LATEGAN Production design by GARY SMITH
Director of Photography CHRIS SCHUTTE
Original Songs by LEON SCHUSTER & DON CLARKE
Executive Producers BASIL FORD GEOFFREY OHENA KATINKA SCHUMANN
PIET BADENHORST KWEKU MANDELA
DR KWAME AMUAH SHABIR CARRIM AHMED OMAR CARRIM LAL BHARWANEY
Associate Producer ELLIOT BORKUM Screenplay by LEON SCHUSTER & GRAY HOFMEYR
Produced by LANCE SAMUELS
Directed by GRAY HOFMEYR
As the countdown to 2010 begins, everyone will become infected with "soccer fever”. It seems only natural that we should hear from Leon Schuster and his usual army of funny-bone tickling bandits at this time. SCHUKS TSHABALALA’S SURVIVAL GUIDE TO SOUTH AFRICA 2010 is a combination of dramatic narrative and traditional candid camera gags unleashed on a new group of unsuspecting Schuster victims. Leon himself is incarnated in the lead as Schuks Tshabalala. Shot largely on location in Cape Town and surrounds, Leon plays himself and an array of alternate characters alongside his trusty sidekick “Shorty” (Alfred Ntombela). They are part of the 2010 tourism campaign, and tasked with assisting tourists who are in the process of planning their visits to South Africa. The story is littered with all sorts of mishaps and belly laughs, in line with what fans have come to expect of Leon Schuster over the last few decades.
The tourists, foreigners and students who are attending class with Schuks are a motley crew of all kinds of characters from all over the world. For the most part, they are the typical representation of each country and have some hysterical one-liners and questions they pose to Schuks throughout the film. Some are naughty, but mostly all are nice and totally impressed with the wonderful Schuks and Shorty as they travel through the city to learn more about South Africa.
Leon Schuster or “Schuks Tshabalala” and Shorty (Alfred Ntombela) are commissioned by the 2010 tourism body to produce a movie as a visual guide and aid for foreigners coming to SA for the World Cup.
Schuks Tshabalala is a teacher and tour guide to a mixed bag of tourists who are taking his survival guide to SA very seriously. Shorty, as usual, is his best friend, assistant and conscience. The students include ”Heinz” from Germany, “Yoti” from Greece, “Jean-Pierre” from France, “Koert” from The Netherlands, “Rajin” from India, “Maggie” from Ireland and “Xing Xang” from China, among others. They are genuinely eager to learn about SA, so Schuks and Shorty are only too happy to oblige. What follows is a series of hysterical demonstrations of life in SA as they attempt to answer all the questions posed by potential visitors. The comedic results range from South Africa’s most famous celebrities being victimized by Tshabalala to a whole new set of Leon Schuster disguised incarnations. Included is a full stadium packed with soccer fans, where the controversial vuvuzela is applied as a tool to test any soccer fan’s enthusiasm to the nth degree.
Nothing and no one is sacred in SCHUKS TSHABALALA’S SURVIVAL GUIDE TO SOUTH AFRICA 2010. Common misperceptions about things like lions and elephants walking the streets of Johannesburg are put to good comedy use and Leon’s array of new incarnations keep the unsuspecting South Africans on their toes.
SCHUKS 2010 also features some Bollywood-inspired musical numbers to allow Schuks to make fun of some of the country’s most powerful and influential personalities.
THE MAKING OF SCHUKS TSHABALALA – DIRECTOR’S NOTES Because of the weather, making a candid camera film in Cape Town was a great challenge. As a director, I had never been involved in a gag movie before, my experience being entirely with scripted fiction.
Comparatively speaking, candid camera is an imperfect medium because you never know what you are going to get. So all you can do, as a team, is to work out the various outcomes and possibilities, then plan how best to cover them with the tools available. Most importantly one must consider the human, visual (camera) and sound possibilities and factors that might influence expected outcomes.
I expect that our operation was probably bigger than any other candid camera movie done in South Africa. We had more than enough cameras, operators and mobile hides.
The most pressure rests on the shoulders of the person in the firing line, in this instance, Leon Schuster. The emotional and mental demands are massive. Imagine an average day.
5am: Into a four-hour prosthetic makeup session – Abel, a sixty year old black male.
8h30: A mobile toilet containing a two-person camera team is towed into position.
9am: A van containing the director, continuity folks, remote vision engineer and a two-man remote sound team moves into position.
9h30: Abel leads 25 men, women and children in minibuses and lorries laden with building materials are moved onto the Sea Point foreshore. One minibus contains a second camera.
9h35: They begin to erect a squatter camp, and Abel begins to explain to the gathering Sea Point residents the details of his land claim. It was a gift by Queen Victoria to Abel‘s great grandfather dating back to 1860.
9h45: A van parks nearby. It contains a third hidden camera
10am: A mobile television news crew arrives and Abel relates his full story to the media. He offers them a look at his great grandfather’s bones, which he has brought from the Transkei for reburial.
Mid-day: The cops arrive and arrest Abel.
12h15: Abel reveals himself as Leon Schuster, having “schuksed” the cops and the residents of Sea Point.
Four hours spent in the make-up caravan, and then four more hours spent to con the population of a suburb? That takes determination!
This may be an imperfect medium and a daunting one, but ultimately it’s a lot of fun.
CAST Leon Schuster (Various characters) / Co-Writer
This is the latest in Leon’s characters. Schuks Tshabalala is a passionate black South African and loves his country. From his bright, colourful suit right down to his SA flag boxer shorts, Schuks is all about the new South Africa and as the tour guide to his mixed bag of foreigners, he makes sure that they are all well informed in all the typically South African social nuances. We meet Schuks Tshabalala when he greets the visitors in all 11 official languages straight away its clear that everyone will be in for many riotous laughs. Schuks Tshabalala plays pranks on unsuspecting victims around the country including some of his students.
Leon Schuster is South Africa’s foremost comedian and the mastermind behind the phenomenally successful comedy feature, “Mr. Bones’ which broke all local box office records to become the highest grossing South African film of all time when it was released in 2001. Leon was drawn to the filmmaking process at an early age and fondly recalls how, as children he and his brother would play practical jokes on his family and film their escapades with an old home movie camera.
After studying for a BA degree at the University of the Orange Free State, Leon spent two years teaching at a high school in Bloemfontein before joining the South African Broadcasting Corporation in 1975. During his time at the SABC, Leon created the hit Afrikaans radio series ‘Vrypostige Mikrofoon’ – where he would disguise his voice and take the mickey out of unsuspecting victims.
In 1982, Leon was approached by Decibel Records to compile a series of sports songs and his first record, ‘Leon Schuster’ sold 100 000 units. His second album ‘Broekskeur’ sold in excess of 40 000 units and this was followed by ‘Briekdans’ and ‘Leon Schuster – 20 Treffers’ which sold in excess of 270 000 copies.
His hit CD ‘Hier Kom Die Bokke’ garnered an FNB Sama Music Award for Biggest Selling CD of 1995. His following CD, the acclaimed ‘Gatvol in Paradise’ sold in more than 125 000 units and gave rise to the unofficial Gauteng anthem, ‘Gautengeleng’.
Schuster the well-loved comedian became Schuster the South African Comedy Legend with his foray into film. His first feature, ‘You Must Be Joking’ produced in collaboration with Johan Scholtz and Elmo de Witt became an instant hit with South African audiences and it gave rise to the equally successful sequel ‘You Must Be Joking Too’.
Having captured a massive and very loyal audience with his slapstick brand of comedy, Schuster produced a string of films that hit the mark with his adoring public. These included ‘O Schuks, it’s Schuster’, ‘O Schuks, Here Comes Untag’, ‘Zulu on My Stoep’ (released internationally as ‘Yankee Zulu’), ‘Short and Sweet’ and ‘Panic Mechanic’. ‘Yankee Zulu’ became a mega-hit in Germany where it became the biggest box office earner after the Bruce Willis vehicle, ‘Die Hard with a Vengeance’. Following ‘Zulu on My Stoep’ was ‘The Millennium Menace’ which was initially filmed as a series of candid camera television inserts. This became an instant hit with viewers and created such a hysterically funny reaction at a private screening that it was released at cinemas.
The highly successful ‘Mr. Bones’ marked a departure from Schuster’s candid camera formula and was a sophisticated film that remained true to the Schuster formula, with classic slapstick elements. The film emerged as the most successful Schuster film of all time, earning more that R33 million at the South African box office. In 2004, Schuster was back with the hilarious film ‘Gatvol’ which looked at the funny side of people immigrating to Australia with the added twist of Schuster being stalked by a fictional despot, Samoosa Woestyn. The film saw Leon once again teaming up with Alfred Ntombela.
Mama Jack saw Schuster regroup with ‘Mr Bones’ director Gray Hofmeyr. The film tracks Jack Theron, who works on a movie set as a grip. His movie producer boss hates Jack and in a bid to get rid of him, the producer spikes his drink at a glamorous function, and before long Jack has unwittingly offended all the attending dignitaries, ruined the function and got him on the wrong side of the law. Now, on the run and desperate, Jack turns to his friend, Shorty, a make-up artist for help, and emerges disguised as a black woman, Mama Jack.
Leon Schuster co-wrote Schuks Tshabalala’s Survival Guide to South Africa 2010 with director Gray Hofmeyr.
Alfred Ntombela (Shorty)
With his signature laugh, Shorty remains the loyal partner to Leon and Schuks Tshabalala throughout the film. Shorty is most often used in the candid gags in and out of disguise alongside Schuks. His friendship with Leon is as solid as ever and watching Shorty in the musical scenes as he shows off his masterful skills as impersonator galore, completes the buddy comedy partnership perfectly.
Alfred Ntombela has played Leon Schuster’s sidekick ‘Shorty’ in an array of features in the last decade. His credits are as follows - FILM: 2009 – Ibu in Mzansi, 2006 – Mr Bones 2, 2004 Mama jack, 2003 Oh Schuks I’m Gatvol - Support - dir. Leon Schuster, 2002 Mr Bones - Support - dir. Gray Hofmeyr, 1999 Ghost Ship en Kalahari - Support - Ghost Ship Productions, 1993 Oh Schuks here comes Untag - Support - Toron Studios, 1991/2 Sweet and Short - Support - dir. Leon Schuster. TELEVISION: 1990-95 Jabu Ikhaya Labantwana - Lead - Heyns Films.
AWARDS: 1991/2 Best Supporting Performance – M-Net Film Awards for Sweet and Short
Tanit Phoenix (Ettie)
Tanit Phoenix naturally caught the eye of the modelling agents, and at 15, she signed with ICE Model Management. From there, she sought out the necessary combination of print and commercial acting gigs to keep her work lively and suitably challenge her young mind. She has travelled the world, lived abroad in Paris, London, Germany, Amsterdam, Thailand, New York, and Los Angeles.
More than 20 of the commercials she has appeared in are international, and she has become an alluring presence in the process.
Her credits include: FILM: Gwen Lieber in 'The Lost Boys: The Thirst' directed by Dario Piana. Ettie Sletvana in ‘Schuks Tshabalala’s Survival Guide to South Africa 2010’ directed by Gray Hofmeyr. Lap Dancer in 'The Philanthropist', episode 6 Season 1, NBC TV series, directed by Jonas Pate. Angel in 'Gallowalker' directed by Andrew Goth. Candy in 'Lord of War' directed by Andrew Nicol. Megan Alba in 'Crazy Monkey: Straight Out Of Benoni', directed by Trevor Clarence. Alexandria in 'Maya' directed by Eric Manning. Malachi’s associate in 'Charlie Jade' episodes 15 and 16, Australian TV series, directed by Anton Bebe.
Matthew Dylan Roberts (Jean-Pierre)
FILM: The Human Factor, Cabinet Minister (support), The Deal, Free Willy, Hansie, Commentator Joe (third lead), Faith like Potatoes, Acts of the Apostles, Goodbye Bafana, Hilde, Big Fellas, Capitalist Pigs, Barber Shop, Vismense, Fool’s Gold, Weapons of War, The Patrick Dickson Story, Monsieur N, Les Deux Mondes, Vir Immer Verloren
TELEVISION: Montana, Despertar, Malan and Kie, Shooting Stars, Known Gods, Madame and Eve, Charlie Jade, Cavegirl II (BBC), Cavegirl, Backstage, Legend of the Hidden City, The Adventures of Sinbad II, The Adventures of Sinbad, Sleurstroom.
Siobhan Hodgson (Maggie)
THEATRE: Crooked, Fiela’s Child, Dancing at Lughnasa, Kindertransport, Drie Susters, Noises Off. TELEVISION: S…O…S…, Ja/Nee and FEATURES: The Chase, Kiss of Milk .
Guilherme Escobar (Jose)
He graduated in Business University PUC – Pontificia Universidade Catolica , in Sao Paulo Brazil (12/2008) He studied acting in Teatro Tuca (1/3/2008) – (1/10/2008), his acting experiences comes since when he was on primary school, when he joined all of the theatres plays since he was 8 years old and joined for 10 years.
He works as an independent producer for 1 year also directing, producing and acting, in a travel show. www.cajadotv.com.br (site), YouTube: CAJADO TV.
He played on the short movie “Visao Blanca”. He has worked in many TV commercials in Brazil, South Africa and Greece.
Sean Higgs (Heinz)
THEATRE: Habeus Corpus, The Wisdom of Eve, Oh What a lovely War, I can’t wait to tie you to the sofa, Safe and Sound, Somewhere on the border, Wild Coast, No more mistletoes, Skits are for free in here, Pipe Dreams, Canterbury Tales, Tidy Team Adventures.
FILM: 2009 Natalie Holloway, 2009 The Song of The Whales, 2009 The Garden, 2009 Glamour and Gloria, 2008 Schweitzer, 2008 Lost City Raiders, 2007 The Deal, 2006 Three Investigators, 2005 Mama Jack, 2004 The Poseidon Adventure, 2004 The Ring, 2003 Of Love and Death, 2003 The Wild Life, 2003 Slipstream, 2003 The Rose Grower, 2003 12 Days of Terror, 2002 Dissonance, 2002 Sandmother, Final Solution, Shark Attack 2, Pirates of the Plain, Les Maison, After the Rain, Sorry Samantha, Sweet and Short, Jobman, River of Diamonds, Hold of my hand, Steel Dawn, Agter Elke Man, The Quarry.
TELEVISION: Charlie Jade, eTV – SOS, eTV - Big Oakes, SABC 2 - Hunt for the Man in the Moon, Riverstone Productions - Sinbad 1 & 2, SABC - The Game 3, SABC - The Fugitive.
Sean has been directing performances in Ana Feyders’ studios for 15 years.
In 2008 in the Movie “Scorpion King” he was Randy Couture's acting coach. This entailed listing to every line he delivered and helping him find meaning, subtlety and energy. Randy is a world champion cage fighter, not an actor. Sean has directed for SABC television and has spent many hours in one or other of his edit suites editing short films, sketches, show reels and music videos.
Emily Child (Marge)
Emily has been actively involved in theatre and television from a young age and has worked for numerous local and international channels including National Geographic.
Her recent theatrical work includes Gone Dottie, a one woman show based on the short stories of Dorothy Parker as well as the 2009 Mechanicals Reparatory season (“The British Lines Tour”) in which she performed in Oscar Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest - directed by Luke Ellenbogen as well as critically acclaimed 'Decadence' written by Steven Berkoff and directed by Christopher Weare.
Emily held a supporting role in the multi-award winning feature film, Shirley Adams, directed by Oliver Hermanus, set to open in cinemas in January 2010. When not on set or stage, Emily works as an M.C and voice artist specialising in accent work.
Karl Janson (Yoti – Tourist)
FILM AND TELEVISION: Blast AKA Ultimatum, Dixon’s Crew - Film Afrika.
Going Up Again, Whitey Bester - Penguin Films
Maria Velanac (Yugi – Tourist)
1992-2002: Television Adverts, Yugoslavia. Television DSTV series and Theatre. 2006: Commercial, Multichoice South Africa. Wimpy Commercial, South Africa. 2006-08: Civic Theatre, Johannesburg South Africa.
Brent Palmer (Zach)
FILM: 2006, The Flood - 2005, Mercenary, The Triangle, The Silent Fall - 2004, Lord of War, Species Odyssey, Charlie Jade - 2003, Dissonances - 2002, Forever Lost. TELEVISION: 2005, Madame and Eve - 2004, Fishy Feshuns, The London Guy, Interrogation Room.
Mehboob Bawam (Rajin)
SCHUKS TSHABALALA’S SURVIVAL GUIDE TO SA 2010/Rajin – Sobenda Trading (Pty) Ltd. THE PHILANTHROPIST/Board Member – Moonlighting Philanthropist (Pty) Ltd. ANNER HOUSE / Asif Ahmed - Little Bird. GOODBYE BAFANA / Ahmed Kathrada - Film Afrika. LIBRARIAN 2 / Cab Driver - Kalahari Pictures. MAMA JACK/ Sky Presenter – Delta Films. SUPERNOVA / Dr Rani Vahpayee - Sunset Bay Trading 132 Pty Ltd. SPRING BREAK: SHARK ATTACK / Professor Wellington - Film Afrika Worldwide). PIRATES OF THE PLAIN / Doctor. MANDELA AND DE KLERK / Television Reporter. THE WHITE LIONESS / Taxi Driver.
TELEVISION: GENERATION KILL / Pakistani Pizza Vendor – HBO, HOME AFFAIRS/ Penguin Films, TOP SPORT /Tv Presenter – SABC, VIDEO C/ Tv Presenter – SABC, WINNING -Cape Waterfront Television, FUGITIVES - C-Films Dir Jakes De Viliers, PEOPLE’S JUSTICE, FLIGHT -Danie Joubert Productions, FISHY FESHUNS-Penguin Films, BIG OKES-Penguin Films, MADAM & EVE /Mr. Patela -Penguin Films, KHULULEKA /Shopkeeper -Penguin Films, THAT LONDON GUY /Mr. Patel - Penguin Films, MADAM & EVE / Rajesh Pahad -Penguin Films.
Sarah W. Muhoho (Woman at Gynaecologist)
THEATRE: 1985: SLEEPING BEAUTY, 1992: THE WIZARD OF OZ, 1996: KANGA WE! , 2000: NEHELA, 2000: SAKINA, 2001: THE HARROWING OF HELL, 2001: THE MOURNERS, 2001: THE DAWNING, 2002: MISS JULIE, 2002: WHO’S AFRAID OF VIRGINA WOOLF, 2003: RAIN DROPS, 2003: RAGS.
TELEVISION: 2005-2006: BETTER DAYS and FILM: JANJAWEED – 2009.
AWARDS: “Better Days” won Best TV Drama at the annual “Chaguo La Teenies Awards” (Teen Choice awards) in Kenya 2006.
Keri Miller (Teacher in Bus)
FILM: Played School Teacher on Bus, in ‘Schuster 2010’, Directed by Gray Hofmeyr. Played Rugby Girlfriend in ‘Human Factor’, Directed by Clint Eastwood and 2005/6 Prank’, Cow Africa
Dawie Ackermann (Gynaecologist)
He studied at the Academy for Dramatic Art under Babs Laker. He has had a long career in Radio, TV and Films. He now focuses mainly on acting in Feature Films and TV programs and operates his own Guesthouse.
RADIO: Announcer, Writer, Presenter and Actor for programs on various radio stations e.g. RSG, Springbok Radio and Trans World Radio. FILM: Actor - have worked with international actors such as Colin Farrell, Donald Sutherland, Selma Hayeck, William H Macey, Meg Ryan, and Noah Wiley
Paddy Canavan(Old Lady with gun)
She has been in the business since she was 3. She has worked on stage, radio, TV and big screen. Her life on stage has come full circle because she started in Musical Theatre and the last 5 productions she has done on stage were Musicals.
Leon Liebenberg (Security Guard)
FILM: SCHUSTER/Security Guard , STIX/Thug 13 - American Feature Film starring Brian Brown & Natasha Henstrich, DIAMOND HUNTERS/Stand In - American mini series starring Allysa Millano & Patrick Flannery, SINBAD/villager who gets turned to stone … and villain soldier (2 episodes in seasons 1 & 2).
TELEVISION: CORAL ISLAND/Seth; head pirate - Granada TV; UK
THEATRE: CRY THE BELOVED COUNTRY/Arthur Jarvis - Roy Sargent Productions.
Luthanco Tshaya (Manager in Pizzeria)
FILM/TELEVISION: The Captain, stunt extra, End Game, 24 Series, Oh Schuks its Schuster 2. THEATRE: Tokoloshe, We Shall Sing for the Father.
Richard Farmer (Couple - Husband)
FILMS: Days of Terror (USA) about shark attacks on the New Jersey coast. Flood (BBC) about a North Sea storm threatening to flood London. The Ring of the Nibelung (Germany) playing a longhaired, long bearded Nibelung. Also Meat and The Silent Fall. On TV he has appeared in Madam & Eve, Sinbad, The Syndicate and many others going back to Arende.
Maureen Tyson (Couple - Wife)
Chapters in her career have included British repertory theatre, West End musicals, T.V. presentation, cabaret, and 20yrs with the CAPAB OPERA CO. – even a stint as a soloist with the Royal Ballet Co. However, she is new to the Film industry.
Joan Coogan (Throwing melons in Supermarket - woman)
She has been doing bit parts in commercial and movies since 2004.
Prior to this she was a nursing sister. She has 2 daughters living in Canada and 5 grandchildren.
Ronald Francer (Throwing melons in Supermarket – man)
He has worked with many of SA’s finest producers and directors on stage, screen and radio over many years and has been nominated for performances in all the disciplines. He has performed on many of the countries’ major stages and will be remembered by many viewers for film work on SA TV’s popular series, Just Nuisance and a wide range of films. Among them are Torn Allegiance, Sanna, Sweeter than Wine, Death of the Teddy Bear and for BBC The Sinking of the Lusatania. And many stage appearances at all the major venues in classics and popular productions.
Chris April (Spaza Shop Owner)
His first introduction to the Film Industry was on TV1, when TV had just started, when it was still in black & white. He worked as a Grip and in all other departments of TV. His first movie was Grin & Gold Heroes, filmed in the 70’s.
Elton Jansen (Singing Beggar)
He is a singer, songwriter and actor, who grew up in Macassar, outside Somerset West. Elton Jansen shared the stage with Mynie Grove, Josh Groban, Diana Ross and American Gospel Singer Fred Hammond. Elton also played the lead role as Nelson Mandela in a South African/Norwegian musical called "Song of Freedom." Elton is a regular on SA TV and has been in numerous ads locally and international.
Marilyn Pearson (Sister Nurse Naude)
She is of Swedish-German parents born in Cape Town. She has been a nurse for a good many years and had a few dealings with the film industry in the last couple of years. I played the part of a nurse in Leon Schuster’s latest movie.
BEHIND THE CAMERA Lance Samuels – Producer
Lance Samuels entered the industry in 1991 and quickly moved up the ranks to become South Africa’s most experienced Assistant Director, working on all major productions shot in South Africa. In 2000, Lance joined New Africa Media Films (NAM Films) to head up development and facilitation. During this time, NAM Films produced the horror film “Slash” which was sold to Universal Pictures and First Look Media. In 2002, Lance founded Out of Africa and heads up a dynamic team reflecting the new generation of South African filmmakers.
Lance’s credits include: The Bang Bang Club (2010) (post-production) (producer), "The Prisoner" (producer: Out of Africa) (6 episodes, 2009), "Human Prey" (producer: South Africa) (1 episode, 2009), Killers of the Savannah (2009) TV episode (producer: South Africa), "Wild at Heart" (local producer) (25 episodes, 2006-2009), "The Devil's Whore" (producer: South Africa) (4 episodes, 2008), "Generation Kill" (line producer) (6 episodes, 2008) (line producer: South Africa) (1 episode, 2008), "Life Is Wild" (local producer) (13 episodes, 2007-2008) (producer) (13 episodes, 2007-2008), Coup! (2006) (TV) (line producer), "To the Ends of the Earth" (2005) TV mini-series (line producer: South Africa), The Eastern Bride (2004) (V) (line producer).
Gray Hofmeyr – Director / Writer
As a WRITER and DIRECTOR of feature films and television drama, Gray Hofmeyr is generally regarded as being at the top of his profession in South Africa. He has won more awards for direction than any other director in the country. He holds the distinction of having more than twenty actors and actresses win best performance awards under his direction.
He began directing television drama in 1975 after training in the United Kingdom and working for the B.B.C. as a floor manager and then 9 years ago began script writing and has garnered seven Best Script awards for his work in this field.
He has directed five feature films, three of which he co-wrote, and has directed numerous television commercials. In January 1997 Hofmeyr became Head of Drama for Endemol South Africa, a division of the largest television production company in Europe, Dutch based Endemol Entertainment.
FEATURE FILMS: 1986 – JOCK OF THE BUSHVELD – Hofmeyr’s first big-screen feature – adapted from the classic novel by Sir Percy Fitzpatrick. This family movie did good business in South African. Vita awards – runner up for best film.
1988 - Directed his second feature and shared the screen-writing credit, adapted from a Geoffrey Jenkins thriller, DIRTY GAMES, starred Jan Michael Vincent and Valentina Vargas.
1989 - LAMBARENE was Hofmeyr's first big budget feature film. The story is an encounter with Albert Schweitzer in the late forties. Starring Malcolm McDowell and Susan Strasberg. Vita awards - best film
1991 - SWEET & SHORT was Hofmeyr's first comedy feature film. At the beginning of 1992 it was the second biggest grossing film (local or international) in S.A. history. Starring Leon Schuster.
1993 - THERE'S A ZULU ON MY STOEP - this collaboration with Leon Schuster was released internationally as ‘Yankee Zulu’ and found success in overseas markets.
2001 - MR BONES – co-wrote with Leon Schuster and directed this hit film, which is the most successful South African film of all time, earning more than R33million at the box office.
2005 - MAMA JACK – co-wrote with Leon Schuster and directed this film which grossed more than R28 million at the South African box office
2008 - MR BONES 2 – co-wrote with Leon Schuster and directed this film which is scheduled for release on 27 November 2008
TELEVISION: 1977/78 - He single-handedly directed 52 episodes of a popular studio-based series called THE VILLAGERS, which sat consistently at the top of the ratings. 2 Tonight! Critic’s awards - Best Director.
1979-83 - Directed two more series and then a season of adapted short stories shot on film. Including: THE MUSIC MAKER - by H.C. Bosman THE HIDING OF BLACK BILL - by O. Henry
1982 - THE OUTCAST was generally regarded as a milestone in South African television drama. Apart from achieving high critical acclaim, it dealt with the issue of a half-cast half brother in a rural white family. Hofmeyr directed and wrote the original story. Tonight! Critic’s awards - best director, best script
1984 - TWO WEEKS IN PARADISE (TV movie) was a further political breakthrough. This was a comedy about a white and a black couple who find themselves down and out and sharing accommodation on a tropical island. Tonight! Critics award - Best Director Artes Award.
1985 - THICKER THAN WATER (TV movie) was Hofmeyr's first solo venture into scriptwriting as well as directing. Tonight! Critic’s award - best script, best director Artes award - best director S.A. Script Writers' Association - best script Academy of Art and Science - best script
1987 -Hofmeyr again rattled some cages with PEOPLE LIKE US, a 26 episode comedy series about a coloured couple moving into a "white" area when it was still officially illegal.
1990 – 1992 - THE BIG TIME has probably been Hofmeyr's biggest television success since the early days of "The Villagers". Not only did it sweep the boards, awards-wise, but also when the first series was broadcast it reached the top of the ratings in only seven episodes. A second series was made and a third has been written. Artes awards - best script, best director tonight! Critic’s awards - best script, best director Academy of Art and Science - twice best script. S.A. Script Writers' Association - best script.
1995-1997 - SUBURBAN BLISS was an unbelievable success story. This sit-com ran for four seasons and was consistently the most popular programme on television amongst in audience categories. Hofmeyr created the series was co-writer, story editor and executive producer.
1998 - present ISIDINGO has become SABC 3’s flagship production. This daily drama series has captured the vast majority of audiences across the cultural spectrum. Hofmeyr created the series and produced.
2000 - BACKSTAGE, a daily youth soap for e-TV.
Elliott Borkum – Associate Producer
He moved from the world of psychology to join 'Out Of Africa' at its inception in 2002. He has worked in almost all the possible areas of production on his way to becoming a Producer for this dynamic and exciting company.
Johan Lategan - Editor
Johan Lategan (Lads) is one of the most respected editors in South Africa. Lads studied in 1971 at the Film School in Pretoria and the next year he did his practical on the Jamie Uys movie "Beautiful People" as assistant en 2nd unit cameraman.
In 1973, after he completed a TV-course at the SABC, he was appointed as editor at the SABC and edited various dramas and documentaries.
In 1978 he joined Scholtz Films as head of postproduction. In 1982 he started his own production company where he produces, directs and edits various dramas, music videos, commercials, feature films and documentaries. In 1992 Lads was nominated for a Star Tonight! Award as Best Director for Ntswarele. Amongst others, he worked on various commercials for EMI Music and various corporate videos.
His more recent work as editor includes the movies Mr. Bones 2, Running Riot, Mama Jack, Heel against the Head and Mr. Bones. He also edited the Afrikaans drama series Dryfsand, the SABC2 series Death of a Queen, Song Vir Katryn 1 and 2 and Lied van die Lappop.
Other big projects include the drama series Hotnotsgode, Vierde Kabinet, Hidden City 1 & 2, Honeytown, Sleurstroom and the international adventure series Tropical Heat. He also edited popular candid camera films like Oh Schuks its Schuster and the comedies Sweet and Short and Zulu on my Stoep.
Angela Phillips – Line Producer
Previous credits include: "The Prisoner" (unit production manager) (6 episodes, 2009) , "Generation Kill" (production manager) (6 episodes, 2008), Primeval (2007) (unit production manager), The Fall (2006) (production manager: Namibia), Catch a Fire (2006) (unit production manager), The Breed (2006) (unit production manager), Racing Stripes (2005) (unit production manager), Ali (2001) (assistant production manager: South Africa), Running Free (1999) (production manager: second unit), Producer: Mandela's Children (2010) (post-production) (associate producer).
Debra Nicoll – Make Up Designer
Debra Nicoll was born in 1966 and has been working in the Film Industry since 1985. Her passion is feature films, but she has also worked extensively in television (Series and commercials.) Her training took place firstly in Cape Town at La Belle Madam Make Up Artists College, followed by further training at the SABC and then working as an assistant on numerous feature films. Schuks 2010 is her 47th feature film and her 5th Leon Schuster film. She started working with Leon on Mr. Bones in 2001 and has been working with him ever since. She has won 2 SAFTA awards, one for a television series called Gabriel and a joint award with Clinton Smith for Mama Jack.
Gary Smith – Art Director
Previous credits include: 10,000 BC (2008) (property master), The Deal (2008/I) (property master), The Librarian: Return to King Solomon's Mines (2006) (TV) (property master), The Trail (2006) (property master) ... aka La piste (France), Son of Man (2006) (property master), Supernova (2005) (TV) (property buyer), Charlie Jade (property master) (7 episodes, 2005) (props master), Wake of Death (2004) (set props), Art Director: Surviving Evil (2009).
Maria Hofmeyr – Costume Designer
She trained at the Johannesburg Technicon in fashion design and been working in the film industry for 26 years, and still loves the challenge of every day. She was the original costume designer for the TV series' 'Isidingo' and 'Shado's'. Maria has designed costumes for many international films, but her first love is making South African characters come alive on screen.
Jean-Roux Viljoen – Locations/Transport/Unit
Previous credits include: "The Prisoner" (unit manager) (6 episodes, 2009), "Generation Kill" (unit manager) (1 episode, 2008), 10,000 BC (2008) (unit manager: second unit) (as Jean Roux Viljoen), Flight of the Phoenix (2004) (unit manager) , Ernest Goes to Africa (1997) (unit manager).
Mickey Kirsten – SFX Supervisor
Previous credits include: The Prisoner (special effects supervisor: South Africa) (6 episodes, 2009), Lost City Raiders (2008) (TV) (special effects supervisor), Flashbacks of a Fool (2008) (special effects supervisor), Doomsday (2008) (special effects supervisor), Flood (2007) (special effects supervisor), Primeval (2007) (special effects supervisor), "The Triangle" (2005) TV mini-series (special effects coordinator), Supernova (2005) (TV) (special effects supervisor), The Constant Gardener (2005) (special effects foreman), "Charlie Jade" (special effects supervisor) (1 episode, 2005), Slipstream (2005) (special effects coordinator), Charlie (2004) (special effects coordinator), Pavement (2002) (special effects supervisor).
Grant Hulley – Stunt Coordinator
Prior credits include: City of Life (2009) (post-production) (stunt supervisor) , "The Prisoner" (stunt coordinator) (6 episodes, 2009), Aadhavan (2009) (stunts), District 9 (2009) (stunt coordinator) (stunt driver), "The Philanthropist" (stunt coordinator, Safari (2009) (stunt coordinator), "Generation Kill" (stunt coordinator), Donkey Punch (2008) (stunt coordinator), Lusitania: Murder on the Atlantic (2007) (TV) (stunt coordinator: South Africa) , Flood (2007) (stunt coordinator), Primeval (2007) (stunt coordinator), Opération Rainbow Warrior (2006) (TV) (stunt coordinator), Mercenary for Justice (2006) (V) (stunt coordinator: South Africa), Avenger (2006) (TV) (stunt coordinator) (stunt double), The Trail (2006) (stunt coordinator), Ask the Dust (2006) (stunt coordinator).
Known Gods (2005) TV series (stunt coordinator) (2005), Slash (2002) (stunt coordinator), Mr. Bones (2001) (stunt coordinator) (stunt double), The Long Run (2000) (stunt coordinator), From Dusk Till Dawn 2: Texas Blood Money (1999) (V) (stunts). Crash Detective ... aka Air Panic (USA: DVD title). Special Effects: High Explosive (2000) (special effects assistant) ... aka Mission explosive (Canada: French title).
Ana Feyder – Casting Director (Cape Town)
Credits include: Albert Schweitzer (2009) (completed) (casting), Invictus (2009) (casting assistant: South Africa), Natalie Holloway (2009) (TV) (casting director: South Africa), "Crusoe" (casting: South Africa) (1 episode, 2008) , Heroes and Villains (2008) TV episode (casting: South Africa), 24: Redemption (2008) (TV) (casting: South Africa Unit), Rendition (2007) (casting: Cape Town, South Africa), The Librarian: Return to King Solomon's Mines (2006) (TV) (casting: South Africa), Ask the Dust (2006) (casting associate: South Africa), "The Triangle" (2005) TV mini-series (casting: South Africa), Lord of War (2005) (casting: Cape Town, South Africa), Ring of the Nibelungs (2004) (TV) (casting: South African cast), Charlie (2004) (casting: South Africa), 12 Days of Terror (2004) (TV) (casting: Cape Town), Eine Liebe in Afrika (2003) (TV) (casting: South Africa), Home Alone 4 (2002) (TV) (location casting: Cape Town), After the Rain (1999/I) (casting director: Cape Town).
Christa Schamberger – Casting Director (Johannesburg)
"Strike Back" (filming) (casting: South Africa) (6 episodes, 2010), Free Willy: Escape from Pirate's Cove (2010) (casting director Johannesburg), Invictus (2009) (casting director: South Africa), Surviving Evil (2009) (casting: South Africa), "Crusoe" (casting: South Africa) (1 episode, 2008), "Generation Kill" (casting: South Africa) (1 episode, 2008), 10,000 BC (2008) (casting: South Africa), "Diamonds" (2008) TV mini-series (casting: South Africa), Primeval (2007) (casting: Johannesburg), The Librarian: Return to King Solomon's Mines (2006) (TV) (casting: South Africa), The Breed (2006) (casting director: South Africa), "Wild at Heart" (casting: South Africa) (3 episodes, 2006), "The Triangle" (2005) TV mini-series (casting: South Africa), Lord of War (2005) (casting: Johannesburg), Wah-Wah (2005) (casting: South Africa and Swazi), "Charlie Jade" (casting: South Africa) (1 episode, 2005), Man to Man (2005) (casting: South Africa), Ring of the Nibelungs (2004) (TV) (casting: South Africa), Red Dust (2004) (casting: South Africa), Blast (2004) (casting: Johannesburg).
Casting Director for Long Street (2009), "Human Prey" (1 episode, 2009), Hond Se Dinges (2009), Skin (2008/I), The Breed (2006), "Wild at Heart" (2 episodes, 2006), Cape of Good Hope (2004), The Story of an African Farm (2004), Stander (2003), Slash (2002), Mr. Bones (2001), Styx (2001), Hijack Stories (2000), The Long Run (2000).
CFX Productions – Rob Carlisle – Prosthetics Designer
CFX Productions is a Cape Town bases SFX Studio specializing in Creature FX, Prosthetics, Animatronics, and Costumes & Fabrication. Rob Carlisle helms the company.
They worked on movies like Blood Diamond, Lord of War & 10 000BC and recently created the Animatronics baby orca for the Free Willy Prequel. The company has worked with Leon before, creating the Award Winning Make-Up for the title character in Leon Schuster's, "Mama Jack".
CFX created the prosthetic Make up design for Schuks Tshabalala’s Survival Guide to South Africa 2010. Prosthetic Make-up Designers, Ashley Powel and Belinda Manwarring worked closely with Rob & Leon to establish all the crazy disguises need for the film. Ashley & Belinda represented the Company on Set applying the FX Makeup daily during principal photography. Each disguise could take up to 3hrs to apply.
An OUT OF AFRICA Production
Starring LEON SCHUSTER & ALFRED NTOMBELA
“SCHUKS TSHABALALA’S SURVIVAL GUIDE TO SOUTH AFRICA 2010”
DR KWAME AMUAH SHABIR CARRIM AHMED OMAR CARRIM LAL BHARWANEY
Associate Producer ELLIOT BORKUM
Screenplay by LEON SCHUSTER & GRAY HOFMEYR
Produced by LANCE SAMUELS
Directed by GRAY HOFMEYR
Special thanks to:
City Sightseeing-Cape Town, AJAX-Cape Town, Primi Piatti Table view, Bilton Wines, Westcliff school of skills, SAN Parks, The Bay Hotel, Mark Bilton, Cape Town film permits office: Niamatullah Kemp & Gail Tshehla, Cape Town Traffic Department-Officer Michael, A-Unit, Tyger Valley shopping Center, Cape Town International Airport - ACSA, Sasol-Parklands, Clara Anna Fontien, Stellenbosch Golf Course, The Company’s Garden-Rory Phelan and Kalk Bay Harbour, African Allsorts BAMR, Bromleys, Canon, Ciba Vision, Curson’s Rigging, Fishing Specialists, Glacau Vitamin Water, Global Brands Group, Redgewoods, Sales Hire, Segway, Spin Life Healthcare, Cape Garden Centre, Techni Vision, The Core, The Nest, Robin Trust, Umlalazi Tourism, Vernon Jacobs
Schuks Tshabalala’s Survival Guide to South Africa 2010 was made possible by:
Schuks Tshabalala’s Survival guide to South Africa 2010 was also supported by: