Calling all aspiring filmmakers


Entries for the SA’s Next Top Filmmaker 2012 competition are now open. This year entrants will be working on a reality / documentary project titled Through The Back Door.

The competition, from General Post in partnership with Curious Pictures, Endemol and Ochre Moving Pictures, will aim to kick-start the broadcast television career of one aspiring South African filmmaker.

The project can be made in a number of reality / documentary formats or genres. This includes a celebrity profile, where viewers get a glimpse into the lives and lifestyles of the rich and famous, as seen on Forever Young and Blame It On Fame on Vuzu and MTV Cribs.

Self-improvement shows cover a person or group of people that improve their lives, for example World’s Strictest Parents, Supernanny and Made.

Make-over shows transform a person, space, business or other entity by calling in experts to fix problems – usually a more superficial or visual change than the self-improvement category. Examples are What Not to Wear, Kitchen Nightmares and Restyle Mystyle (SABC2).

In the social experiment genre, people with different values agree to live by each other’s social rules for a brief period of time and sometimes learn from the experience, for example Culture Swap, Wife Swap and Same Name.

Personality profiles show interesting people — sometimes celebrities — going about their daily lives, as seen on A Day in the Life and Top Shayela (Vuzu).

Scripted reality will feature a person or group of people put into certain situations or given a task while the result is filmed. The personalities of the subjects drive a lot of the action. Examples are Cream Cartel (Vuzu), Keeping up With the Kardashians and Jersey Shore.

In constructed reality a person or group of people are put in a stressful or difficult situation and the result is filmed, as seen on Intervention and Boiling Point.


Entrants are required to submit a script, treatment and storyboard according to the guidelines set out on the General Post website.

Three finalists will be chosen to produce their projects under the mentorship of Curious Pictures, Endemol and Ochre Media, giving them hands-on experience working in a professional environment and allowing them to make valuable contacts to further their careers in the television and film industry.

The winner will receive a one year paid internship at one of the partner companies, as well as exposure to the industry at large.

Camera, lighting and sound equipment is sponsored by Digitalfilm and wardrobe and accessories by Ikaya.

The offline edits will be done at General Post and the online at The Bladeworks in Bryanston. Final mix for the three finalists will be sponsored by Warren Birley of Fine Tune Audio in Bryanston.

For more information on how to enter and for entry requirements go to: or

Screen Africa magazine – May 2012


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