Council 2015-2016

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THE WGSA COUNCIL:  2015/2016

All WGSA services are rendered by the below volunteer council members and the part-time executive officer.

Theoline Maphutha:  Chairperson

Theoline Maphutha is a self-employed writer with over five years’ experience in the film and television industry. Before pursuing a career as a writer, she studied and worked in the information and communications technology (ICT) industry for almost 10 years as a support administrator, systems implementer, and project manager. Although skilled in lifestyle/magazine program writing, she’s a published poet, lyricist, and blogger, passionate about kaizen, constant self-improvement. Contribution is one of her highest values (ever since she was a Brownie in the girl scouts). Her life’s goal is to empower people to follow their purpose using the knowledge, experience, and resources available to her. Theoline is an independent soul with nimble flexibility, and a deliberate, succinct style of communication, who delivers autonomously creative ideas and solutions.

Peter Goldsmid: Legal Services

Peter Goldsmid:  Vice-Chair:  Legal Services

Writer-director-producer Peter Goldsmid has a background in legal philosophy and politics and a keen interest in the interface between morality, justice, crime, social issues – and drama. This would his final year on Council where, if elected, he would continue to giving advice to writers in their dealings with producers. This includes advising on legal issues (such as contracts), helping writers access professional legal help if necessary, and mediating in disputes. Having worked both as producer and writer for hire, he has a balanced perspective on the issues that affect writers and brings this to bear in his contributions to Council.. He is currently nominated for a 2015 writing SAFTA (as part of the “Traffic” writing team) and a Muse Award for documentary writing on Dance up from the street. He is storylining and co-writing a drama series for SABC and also teaching screenwriting to 3rd Year and Honours students at AFDA Film School, Cape Town. He has over the years participated enthusiastically in mentoring and training as a valuable adjunct to production. He has written and directed a range of dramas, from the award-winning international feature, The Road to Mecca (starring Kathy Bates)  to four series of Justice for All (1999 – 2006) for SABC 2. All in all, he has written, directed and produced more than seventy hours of broadcast television, specialising in drama series, including Fallen (2011) that has been rebroadcast three times since its debut on SABC 1. He enjoys working with other writers. He was A-storyliner and scriptwriter for Scandal (2010-2911) and one of several storyliners (and writers) on SABC 1’s End Game (2013). He wrote five episodes of Traffic (ETV) and, more recently, four episodes of the crime series, Zibondiwe (2014). He is a 2009 triple Golden Horn Winner for Writing, Direction and Production of the mini-series Riemvasmaak. Peter’s documentary, Dance up from the streets, dealt with a remarkable dance programme that is transforming the lives of former street kids in Kigali. It has been been seen at the Cannes Film Festival, the United Nations Association Film Festival and the Pan African Film Festival (among others). In 2011 and 1012 SABC aired Difficult Love, an internationally hailed and multi-award-winning documentary he produced and co-directed on the situation of black lesbians seen through the life and lens  of controversial photographer and visual activist Zanele Muholi. In 2012 he wrote the screenplay of The love songs of Nathan J Swirsky, based on the Christopher Hope comic novel of the same name. It was selected for No Borders Week of the Independent Film Project in New York in September 2013 and it is currently in development. His documentary pronect on hate crimes (also with Zanele Muholi) was selected for the 2014 Durban Film Market and is in development with Emmy-nominated Dutch co-producer, Joost Verhei. Peter is a recent graduate of the NFVF’s Advanced Producers’ Course. He has attended Film Markets in both Europe and America, broadening his understanding and knowledge of the possibilities open to South African writers and producers. He shares the vision for the WGSA of a mutually supportive community of colleagues and his involvement on Council in the WGSA has been and will be directed to this end.

Margaret Goldsmid: Professional Development

Margaret Goldsmid:  Vice Chair:  Professional Development

Margaret is a highly experienced script development executive, script editor, screenwriting trainer, producer and writer. She also has 8 years of broadcasting experience behind her and is a former head of Drama at the SABC. She is currently a mentor on the Sediba Masters Screenwriting course, which she has been teaching since 2008. In 2013 she designed the NFVF Bridging course for Script Editors with Justine Loots and has been teaching it since then. She is a mentor on the NFVF Induction Course for new script editors on the Masters programme. She is teaching screenwriting to 3rd Year and Honours students at AFDA Film School, Cape Town. She also taught short courses in screenwriting at Monash University in 2003 and 2004. Since 2007 Margaret has been an accredited NFVF Script Editor and has edited numerous feature films, which include Ian Gabriel’s Four Corners, Miles Rolston and Julie Hall’s Magic and Mining, Zola Maseko’s Whale Caller, Brent Quin and Karima Effendi’s The Bastard, Thandi Brewer’s Chemo Club and Paul Ian Johnson’s The Number. She is currently head-writing Covert Affairs (working title) a 13 x 48’ series for SABC 3 and has just completed Krotoa, a feature film, which she co-wrote with Kaye Williams for Penguin Films. The film is to be produced later this year. She has also storylined on Sewende Laan for 9 months in the past. Margaret has produced several drama series and a sitcom for the SABC. These include four series of Justice for All, Riemvasmaak and Fallen Margaret co-developed all these series with production partner, Peter Goldsmid. Collectively these series have been nominated for 42 industry awards and has won 16 of them. Riemvasmaak won the SAFTA for best drama series in 2009. Margaret is a recent graduate of the NFVF’s Advanced Producers’ Course. He has attended Film Markets in New York and Miami; these broadened her understanding of writing (and producing) for the international market. She has been a judge for several South African industry awards and was a juror for the 2011 International Emmy Awards.

polani fourie

Polani Fourie: Communications

Polani Fourie: Vice Chair:  Communications, Relations Building and Marketing

Identified by DIFF as one of the compelling new voices in African Filmmaking, she is a Screenwriter, Producer, Award-Winning Photographer and Actress.

Top Photo Journalism student whilst attaining an Honors Degree in B. Com Business Communications;  selected as one of only 15 to major in Single-Camera Video Production (whilst also majoring in Public Speaking, Research Methodology, PR & Marketing), furthered studies in Screenwriting at ‘the Writing Studio,’  Acting at ‘ACT’ Cape Town & Presenting at ‘SABC.’

Worked as Producer & Research Analyst (Story Researcher) at Studio Zoo, Location Assistant & Floor Manager for DSTV’s Go Channel at MNET, Actress & Voice-over Artist at M-Net (Be on Go) & DSTV (Studio Zoo). Extra for Global Creative Studio’s and Lead Role in ‘Ultimate Cars’ for Skye Television, United Kingdom.

Director of own photography business since 2006.  ABIA Award winner for Photography 2012 (African Bridal Industry Awards).

Freelancing for ‘Imagenheart Productions’ (developers of award-winning film:  “Anderkant die Stilte’’) & KYKNET’s wine show ‘Sediment’ as Production Manager.

Selected as one of only 40 international participants to take part Durban International Film Festival’s ‘Talents Durban’ program – in association with ‘Berlinale Talents.’

Transformation Champion (mentoring member) for ATFT.

Feature film in pre-production with ‘Born to Win’ & ‘Faith like Potatoes’ producer Frans Cronje’.

Short film:  “The Riddle” approved for further development by Durban International Film Festival as part of their Script Station – only four screenplays selected from across the whole continent of Africa & “The Riddle” one of only two selected from South Africa.

Feature film screenplay “The Missing Link” approved for the international film content market in Prague 2015

Amor Tredoux:  Treasurer

Amor has been involved with theatre, film and television as a performer since the seventies. Cut my teeth as scriptwriter in the nineties and wrote several children’s series for SABC, including DTV (Deaf Television). More than a decade of writing TV soap followed (Egoli, Sewende Laan), during which I discovered I had a talent for fixing other people’s scripts (script editor Egoli). I also discovered there is life after soap and returned to writing for children and young adults. Two of my plays have been published in school books (Via Afrika and Oxford University Press). I co-wrote the youth series, danZ!, for Kyknet last year. Adjudicator for Muse awards.

Dr Eubulus Timothy:  Durban

Dr Eubulus Timothy:  Durban representative:  Communications

Eubulus Timothy is an award winning writer, director and producer of film and television. In Hollywood he won the prestigious Harley-Merrill Screenwriting Award. He has studied the History of Narrative Film and also has a Diploma in Directing and a Diploma in Cinematography from the Los Angeles City College Film School. He was the founding chairperson of the Cape Film Commission. Presently he is the vice chairperson of Writers’ Guild of South Africa and founding chairperson of the Durban Filmmakers Guild.

In South Africa he directed the feature film Othello and numerous short films. He 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. He has produced and directed major events for South African Embassies and Commissions around the world including the 10 Years of Democracy in Singapore and Tsoetsi Pre-Oscar Party at The Beverley Hilton in Beverly Hills.

Shakila Maharaj: Durban

Shakila Maharaj:  Durban Representative:  Professional Development

Shakila Maharaj is a registered Organizational Psychologist, totally blind and a recognized global disability equity strategist and trainer. She is the founder and co-director of AudioDescribe (Pty) Ltd whose vision is to enhance the life of visually disabled persons by creating access to the visual media through audio description. In collaboration with others her current projects include the development of audio description for the 13 part television series Sticks and Stones in Zulu and co-writer of movie script Looking for Love funded by the KZN Film Commission.

Allan Spijkers: Pretoria

Allan Spijkers:  Pretoria Representative:  Communication

Although Allan Spijkers is permanently employed outside the industry, he has been able to pursue his passion. His background is mainly in the theatre having acted, directed, produced and written. He has also produced his own work under the banner of “All Season Productions”. Apart from some formal acting training, he is self-taught.

Yolanda Lindeque-Strauss: Pretoria

Yolanda Lindeque-Strauss:  Pretoria Representative:  Professional Development

Yolanda Lindeque-Strauss is a full-time freelance writer specializing in screenplays and novels as well as editing, story analysis and proof reading. She is self-trained and attends as many workshops as possible, study the latest articles and constantly do online courses. Yolanda is a qualified secretary and worked in corporate businesses as well as educational institutions for 12 years before embarking on her writing journey in 2009. This gives her the unique advantage of business skills as well as the background to be a writer in many styles including fiction, non-fiction, business and creative.

Currently she is finalising the budget and shooting-schedules for her sitcom called “Hallo! Hallo!” that was a finalist in the 2013 Writers’ Guild SA Great Idea competition. It is planned to be proposed to broadcasters at the end of 2015 by 5 Pillars Productions (Pty) Ltd. She coordinated the filming of the pilot episode for this series on a zero budget to use for pitching purposes.

She is also adapting a novel into a TV drama serial called “Smoke of Forgiveness” commissioned by Nelson Makhubane Tshabalala, which will be proposed to the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) in September, 2015.

As for feature films, she has been commissioned by the British production company, Poseidon Studios, to write their upcoming Romantic Comedy, “Walk the Plank”, which they are presently procuring funding for.

Future projects include a high-end feature film about Wolraad Woltemade as well as a documentary about this 18th century hero. And she is working on a long term project, an action-drama TV series, about emotional healing revolving around the veterans of the 1970-80s Angola war in Namibia (a.k.a. South-West Africa), which requires a great deal of research side-by-side with a psychologist and a war veterans’ counsellor.

In between writing and learning Yolanda shares her time voluntary with other writers through the Writers’ Guild of South Africa, the newly founded Pretoria We Want Films Club and live recital nights in Pretoria East. Whenever she gets a break she also loves to go to the ballet and theatre, and enjoys horse riding, kayaking and rock climbing.

Clea Mallinson:  Cape Town

Clea Mallinson:  Cape Town Representative:  Professional Development

Clea graduated with an Honours degree in film from UCT in 2004. She wrote and directed a TV documentary in Xhosa, “Pinky and the Computers” in 2009. In 2010  she graduated with an MA in screenwriting from the Huston School of Film & Digital Media in Ireland. That year she received a scholarship to attend a summer screenwriting course at UCLA. Creating animation, short fiction and quirky documentary, exploring themes of self-expression, connection and the environment is what Clea loves to do. She is currently co-editing a feature documentary, writing a literary adaptation feature film and developing a short animation set in the Eastern Cape with the assistance of the NFVF.

Hanné Koster:  Cape Town

Hanné Koster:  Cape Town Representative:  Communication

Hanné Koster is a television director and documentary filmmaker based in Cape Town. She has been working in the television industry for the past 18 years, focusing mostly on documentaries and magazine programmes. She has been a director on award-winning television programmes like Truth Commission Special Report, I am woman – Leap of faith, Kwêla and Pasella. She was the co-director of the documentary Coenie de Villiers – Hart van Glas and produced ’n Tweede kans (a documentary about a cancer awareness motorbike ride). Current projects include the documentary “Keep moving, keep ranting” (Original title: Hou aan beweeg, hou aan geraas maak – it is currently in production, more information here: www.houaan.co.za)

Her blog can be followed here: www.hannekoster1.wordpress.com
Kelsey Egan

Kelsey Egan: Cape Town

Kelsey Egan:  Cape Town Representative:  Communication

Kelsey Egan graduated from Vassar College in 2005 with General Honours and BA degrees in both Neuroscience & Behaviour and Drama.

Her directing thesis received the Molly Thacher Kazan Memorial Prize for distinction in the theatre arts.

She subsequently gained experience on various short films and big features in New York City, and then Beijing.

Since moving to South Africa in 2007, she has worked on large local and international projects (including Eye in the Sky, The Giver, Zulu, Mad Max: Fury Road, District 9 and Mr. Bones II) and directed various music videos, PSAs and narrative work of her own. Her directorial debut – “Gargoyle” [26 min, S16mm] – was nominated for a 2010 South African Film & Television Award for Best Short Film. Selected for screening at 16 International Film Festivals, the film was picked up for distribution by Shorts International and IndieFlix.

When not developing original content via her production company, Crave Pictures, Kelsey offers her services as a freelance Director, Producer, Writer and Script Editor.

She is a proud council member of the Writer’s Guild of South Africa, and one of her feature screenplays was recently awarded ‘Best Spec Script’ at the 2013 Muse Awards.

As a writer / director, she is represented by Echo Lake Entertainment. As an actress, she is represented by Artistes Personal Management and GenerateLA.

To view some of her directing work, please visit her website: www.kelseyegan.com

To view some of her film and television credits, please visit her IMDb Profile: http://www.imdb.me/kelseyegan

Matthew Kalil:  Cape Town

Matthew Kalil:  Cape Town Representative:  Professional Development

Matthew Kalil’s work is marked by a deep understanding and inspired use of narrative, collaboration and subtext to distill sensitive performances and create meaningful cinema.

He has an MA in Screenwriting from the Northern School of Film and Television (UK) and 20 years of experience in directing, editing and writing for film, as well as script editing, acting and coaching.

Matthew Kalil’s projects and collaborations have been screened, broadcast and exhibited in Canada, Denmark, Morocco, New Zealand, Puerto Rico, Thailand, the United States, United Kingdom, and throughout his home country, South Africa.

Kalil has lectured at various institutions including the University of Cape Town, AFDA Film School and TISH, New York University

Ritesh Seecharan: Johannesburg

Ritesh Seecharan: Johannesburg Representative: Professional Development

Ritesh started off as a self-taught screenwriter (thanks to Google) and  completed his first movie script in December 2014. He thought he was done, The End … fade to black. YAY, now he could retire on an Island taking long walks on the beach whilst listening to Kenny G… NOT. Record scratch moment when he contacted the WGSA, nope…. that was just the first draft. It was a hard pill to swallow but he quickly realised that through lots and lots of workshops and the extensive training and wisdom from fellow writers, he might just get his sunset and silhouette dream.

Tracey-Lee Dearham: Johannesburg

Tracey-Lee Dearham: Johannesburg Representative: Communication

Tracey-Lee is a South African writer, producer and script editor working in her home territory, Brazil and across the continent. She began her working career at Red Pepper Pictures working in the Development and Production of variety, non fiction television shows.

In 2008, she moved to Wales whilst studying at the Thomson Foundation in Cardiff and trained as a series producer whilst interning on a collective of channel 4 documentaries.  She returned to South Africa, as a Thomson Foundation Fellow and joined the Sediba Script Editing Program;  eventually becoming an accredited National Film and Video Foundation script editor.

Adding to her personal development; Tracey-Lee completed a course in Entertainment Law at the University of Johannesburg followed by the completion of the Sediba Producers Emerging Course.  

Between 2009 and 2013; Tracey-Lee worked on a variety of projects including Producing and Directing the highly acclaimed 13 part documentary series Breaking New Ground, Associate Producing Blood Tokoloshe, Producing the Brazilian Documentary Born Free and co-developing Adze Ugah’s film Gog’ Helen.  She currently serves as a script editor on feature film projects that are in development and funded by the National Film and Video Foundation and the Kwazulu Natal Film Commission.

Tracey-Lee was one of the key storyliners of the SAFTA nominated crime drama series Mshika-shika (2011) for M-NET’s Mzansi Magic. Most recently she was the Head Writer of a Pan African Series Saburi developed for DV8 and mentors at the internationally acclaimed Script Station that takes place annually during the Durban International Film Festival.

Tracey-Lee has served as an adjudicator for the Writers Guild Muse Awards and the 2014 South African Film and Television Awards.