Award-winning TV producer Sibusiso Ngobeni has the big ambition of informing, engaging and influencing an entire generation of people through the content he produces.
He loves telling stories, and believes his work makes a difference because of its educational, informative, engaging and responsible content. He works on TV shows, commercials and films, and recently won an award from the South African Film and Television Awards (Safta) for a TV documentary series called Kick It. The programme highlighted the rampant problem of substance abuse in the country.
“A show like that was designed to inform and educate viewers about the dangers of substance abuse and how addicts, family and friends of addicts and communities at large can potentially address the challenges we face with substance abuse,” he says.
“Content is really king and can either break or build a nation – a nation without good, engaging content is a nation without a soul, and I believe this industry is the soul of a nation.”
He’s not all seriousness, though, and adds: “I like being able to have fun whilst I get paid for it, rather than being stuck in some very corporate job somewhere.”
Ngobeni graduated in 2007, from AFDA, South Africa’s film school which bills itself as the school for the creative economy, with a degree in film producing and was appointed an executive producer with Mindset Concept Production House.
He started his career in 2008 and has worked in multiple genres including corporate productions, music videos, documentaries, documentary TV series, reality and sports TV, game shows, sitcoms and radio commercials.
Until recently, Ngobeni was an executive producer with Engage Entertainment, and notable productions he worked on include the 2010 World Cup Review Show, Gospel Gold, MVP Jam, Psalted, the first season of Ithuba Lamagcina, and the third season of Gauteng Maboneng. “My future plans are rather really big,” he says.
“I recently left my previous business and teamed up with an incredible set of young ladies to form a new business that will focus on industry development, particularly upskilling the youth in rural areas and peri-urban areas through our knowledge of film and television. We have a lot planned, and I will be focusing on building that with my new partners and mentoring a lot of new young people who are entering the industry.” – Lesley Stones