About Us

The Garden Route Film Office was established to make Film and TV production in our region easier. Partners and key role players have been identified to assist in taking this vision forward in a self-sustainable way, and specific strategic interventions had been identified to guide the Garden Route Film Office as a one-stop service entry point for the local and international industry members.

The Garden Route film industry can grow by leveraging its unique and diverse combination of locations, ease of access and “Film Friendly” attitude. The challenge for the industry is how to effectively address the constraints it faces, so it can unlock the region’s growth potential.

Board of Directors

The Garden Route Film Office operate under the lead of a 7 member Board of Directors.

Philip DeVries

Chairperson

Philip has been actively engaged in the communications and media for most of his life. Throughout his adult years, there have been many opportunities to develop his skills in television and radio, and during the years 1990 through 1992, was involved in recorded or live television productions either as a producer or on-air talent. This continued freelance during the 1990’s and he became an extra in a few movies filmed in the Pittsburgh area, ie. Dogma, House Guest, Sudden Death in addition to being part of the mini-series “The Temptations.” His son John is also an award-winning movie director.
Most recently, Philip has been assisting as a board member for Garden Route Film Studios plus chairperson for the Garden Route Film Office which is designing and developing locations, training facilities, skills database and permitting for the film industry to be more representative in this part of the world. Philip is a networker and as chairperson is assisting in that process in every possible way.

Jeanetta Marais

Vice Chairman

When you’re based in the Garden Route, it’s hard not to want to share your town with visitors. As the CEO of Your Travel Guide, former head of Mossel Bay Tourism and now Vice Chairperson of the Garden Route Film Office, it’s easy to say that Travel and Tourism is my passion.

I’ve helped all sectors of the travel and tourism industry. From strategic development of brands and routes, stakeholder motivation training and managing municipal sectors to creating and marketing memorable visitor experiences for clients and destinations alike.

I’m a leader, manager, hard-worker, marketer, creator and team player all in one – How can I help you?

Letitia Cunningham


Has great interest in the training component in the film industry. Holding a BA degree in Communication Science and Psychology and an incomplete Honours degree in International Communication, which will be completed in 2019 is helpful (Radio, Television and Film management is part of the studies. A train the trainer certificate (ETDP 9963) had been obtained in 2017 e-academy. E-learning and integrated WebQuest certificates had been obtained through the Western Cape Education department.

Patrick Walton


Producing credits include both local and international work including Feature Film, commercial, documentary, reality TV and 360 Stills productions. He is a driven and motivated producer, dedicated to the growth, sustained development and efficacy of the industry.

Patrick’s connection and commitment to the film, commercial and television production industry is a real benefit for ShootAway Production clients. He has chaired and was the originator of the Official South African Casting Association (OSCASA) which works to improve and sustain the industry with like associations representative of Producers, Crew and Talent. He has served on the board for SASFED (South African Screen Federation), as well as recently being a current member for the International Academy of Television, Arts and Sciences (Emmy’s) which accumulated into judging in 2013 and serving on the Cape Film Commission advisory board.

His corporate background at executive level abroad in both the United Kingdom and Germany and his hands-on involvement and understanding of policy and the business side of the industry has increased his profile substantially within the film industry.

Takalani


Lika Berning


Lika Berning is the founder and director of iKasi Media, accredited Film and TV Training Provider, based in George. She is also a freelance actress who has had leading roles in a number local films including French Toast, Hartiwood Films 2015, Vrou Soek Boer, West5Films 2013, Liefling, Die Movie 2010 Bang Bang Club 2010, Film Afrika– Simon Silver. As well as Soapies like Binnelanders, 7de Laan and series – Feast of the Uninvited 2008, Katinka Heynes and Showmax drama series Byl, Season 1 and 2, 2013 -2018. Lika is also a filmmaker and producer, her production company Berning&Iglis, is in Cape Town but often operating in the Garden Route involving the graduates from iKasi Media programmes.

Jacques Van Der Merwe


Jacques is the heart behind Hartland Broadcasting. Since moving to the Garden Route (5 years ago), he has been working on establishing and growth of the film industry. He is currently on the board of Directors for the Garden Route Film Office working constantly to make this region the new hot spot of the film industry. Over the last 8 years, Jacques has been developing and producing TV series for channels such as Kyknet and Kruiskyk. Hartland Studios are located at the Paddagat shopping centre, also known as St.George Square in George Western Cape.

Liza Stroebel

Co-opted Member

Elizabeth (Liza) Stroebel is a Councillor at the Garden Route District Municipality and serves on various committees, of which the Section 80 Committee of Tourism & District Economic Development, hence her appointment on the Board. She established her own business in 2003 and was awarded the Garden Route Business Woman of the Year in the (Micro) Business Section in 2007.

She will seek to promote the empowerment of women and youth in the film industry.

Paul Hoffman

Co-opted Member

Paul Hoffman, M.Com Marketing Management, has extensive experience in business and marketing strategies, export development, enterprise development and other disciplines, having spent 29 years working across sectors, including corporate organisations, managing his own business and an academic background as lecturer. He is currently Project Manager for SCEP and working closely with stakeholders in the Garden Route to promote growth and investment opportunities. He has been instrumental in the ground work and setting up the Garden Route Film Office.