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Book your seat at tonight’s free one-night-only Wavescape Filmmakers Masterclass, presented by Wesgro, and rub shoulders with key players in the conservation documentary space and learn what goes into the creation of successful content.

Some of South Africa’s most influential conservation filmmakers will be joined by a top executive from the FOX Networks Group at the Wavescape Masterclass, presented by Wesgro, this evening (Wednesday 6 December) in Cape Town.

Cape Fur Seal opens its mouth to inspect reflection, Duiker Island, Hout Bay, Cape Town

Worldwide, an increasing sense of urgency around protecting and conserving the last wild places, particularly the ocean, has highlighted a deepening need for powerful stories that incite positive change.

The masterclass, which is presented by the Wesgro Film and Media Promotions office and Wavescape Surf & Ocean Festival, provides the opportunity for networking amongst players in the conservation documentary space, while providing insights into how successful content is produced and distributed.

Conservation filmmakers tread a fine line between science and emotive storytelling, while facing other challenges such as finding funding and the right platforms for their work. The masterclass interrogates how one unpacks the big data of science to unearth narratives – visually and from a scripting perspective – that avoid the trap of so-called “doom and gloom” environmental films.

With input from industry experts, leading scientists and award-winning directors, the masterclass also welcomes key-note speaker Adam Theiler. As Executive Vice President of FOX Networks Group Europe and Africa, Adam speaks from his experience with National Geographic Channels and the growth of his team’s broadcast footprints in Africa.

Adam leads teams in eight offices across the region that deliver 25 localized channels. The regional business also includes a production group in South Africa and a production remit in Turkey and Finland that includes delivering over 3.000 hours of scripted, non-scripted, news and sports original content annually.  Adam’s teams also manage the wider National Geographic Partners business that includes licensing and merchandising, digital media, and publishing the local language editions of the National Geographic Magazine.

Speakers provide insights into their personal journeys in filmmaking and the broadcasting space, highlighting the challenges, rewards and greater meaning and impact of producing films with a powerful conservation mandate.

Underwater cameraman and marine fixer Steve Benjamin speaks about his experiences as a cameraman with some practical insights about underwater photography, and the effort it takes to make great images.

Award-winning Director Bryan Little discusses his recent film Deep Blue /  Middle C and how the film works to subvert the factual documentary genre with emotive imagery, and explores what drives his creative process.

He is joined by award-winning producer Filipa Domingues, who worked with Bryan on Deep Blue /  Middle C. She also discusses making films that mean something for conservation and the risks and rewards of creating the kind of work you believe in.

Marine biologist Lauren de Vos describes her personal journey of converting science into emotive conservation storytelling via filmmaking, something she has become deeply passionate about. She also discusses how to go about connecting with the scientific community to find interesting stories.

Conservation storyteller Philippa Ehrlich shares the tale of how she re-kindled her connection to the ocean on a physical and spiritual level, and how this influenced her work as a filmmaker. It has lead to a project that may well re-define the boundaries of the genre.

Digital content executive from the Two Oceans Aquarium Ingrid Sinclair speaks about the need for compelling, creative, short and – above all – authentic video content that inspires viewers to take action from a change of heart or mindset.

Wesgro Film and Media Promotion Officer Lisa Mini speaks about how her organisation supports filmmakers and production companies within the Western Cape, as well as how the water crisis has impacted on the film industry.

Co-founder of Electric South Ingrid Kopp discusses the ins and outs of non-traditional funding models and securing soft funding for documentaries as well as insight into Virtual Reality and how the technology is being used in the conservation space.

The event is free, but seats are limited. Bookings can be made through www.quicket.co.za

Shark Tourism. A diver photographs a Sevengill shark in Cape Town, South Africa

Date:                   Wednesday, 6 December 2017

Time:                    6pm

Venue:                 Invest SA One Stop Shop, Western Cape

Address:             Cape Sun Corner, 46 St. George’s Mall, Cape Town

Parking:              Picbel Parkade, 58 Strand Street


Supporting partners are Marine Stewardship Council, Jack Black Beer, Wesgro Film and Media Promotion, Save Our Seas Foundation, Petco, Long Beach Capital, Mami Wata, Deus ex Machina, Channel 24 and Wavescape.


20-28 Nov: Art Board Exhibition, Jack Black Beer Brewery

28 Nov: Auction with Rob Van Vuuren, Jack Black Beer Brewery, 7.30pm

22 Nov: Film Night, Rolling Wood Surf & Skate Store, Muizenberg, 6pm

30 Nov: Light Waves Exhibition, Red Bull Studio, Bree Street, 6pm

29 Nov-1 Dec: Ocean Film Festival, Cinema Nouveau, V&A Waterfront, 8pm

2 Dec: Beach Co-Op Milnerton Beach Cleanup, art & surf demo, 8am

2 Dec: Clifton Screening, Clifton 4th Beach, 8pm

4 Dec: Slide Night, Centre for the Book, 7:30pm

5 Dec: Jack Black Movie Night, 10 Brigid Road, Diepriver, 8pm

5 Dec: Mami Wata Night of African Adventure, Keep it Simple Surf shop, Cape Town, 6.30pm

6 Dec: Wesgro Blue Ocean Master Class, InvestSA One Stop Shop Western Cape, Cape Town, 6pm

7-10 Dec: Film Festival, Labia Cinema, 6pm and 8pm shows

TBC: Beach Reach Youth Education Session by Save Our Seas Foundation

For more information visit Wavescape’s website, Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

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