Zulu Surf Riders completes a successful 2008 film festival run!

World Premiere: Encounters Documentary Film Festival (South Africa)

*2nd place Audience award

International Premiere: Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival (USA)


*Additional Film Festival selections and screenings:

Durban International Film Festival (SA)

Wavescape Surf Film Festival (Cape Town, SA)

Apollo Film Festival (SA)

Africa in Motion Film Festival (Scotland)

Ombak Film Festival (Indonesia)

We've received great feedback and praise for the film and we have just recently submitted the film to our local broadcaster... Fingers crossed that they see it fit for TV.

Some snippets from the film 'Zulu surf riders'

ZSR Film Intro from Carlos Francisco on Vimeo.

Radio interview with SAFM

SAFM inerview with Brenen from Carlos Francisco on Vimeo.


Zulu Surfrider - the beginning of a special story

Howzit, my name is Brenen Nortje. I am surfer from the awesome city of Durban in the majestic province of KwaZulu-Natal. Besides a surfer, I am a copywriter and love stories of hope, triumph and above all the powerful capabilities of the spirit of surfing.

As a youngster I surfed Happy Wanderers on the South Coast with the same two guys (Simon & Gary) for years and years. On exploring a little further South on the KwaZulu-Natal coast we discovered places like Mfazi's, Umzumbe and Banana beach. These are amazing, pristine and true South Coast breaks ... magically wild and regularly rewarding.

It was here, for the first time that the three of us surfed with young black surfers, who lived in the surrounding hills and immediate communities. Previously I had never seen black kids or adults venture past the shore break, let alone surfing in some of the most demanding conditions in SA! They were always so friendly and welcoming, and I initiated a number of conversations with them, in order to learn more and more of the rich cultural fabric that made up their story. There were so many adversities; culturally, financially and physically that they had to overcome, I found their story truelly remarkable. After further investigation I finally met a pioneering black surfer from Umzumbe Sandile 'Cyril' Mqadi. After having a long chat with Sandile on the Addington beachfront, I decided that this is a story that cannot remain silent for any longer and embarked on a mission to create a surf film about the Zulu Surfriders of the South Coast!

I wanted to use very special people to help capture and document this amazingly unique slice of South African culture. Firstly I needed highly skilled artists, fluent in the art of storytelling, with a passion for the community and who understood the true nature and spirit of surfing and what it is capable of achieving. Enter Carlos and Andre, two soulful spirits that I had worked with on previous projects, and who were both surfers themselves. We sat around my laptop and I explained my vision for Zulu Surfrider. Both loved the concept, storyboard, visual and audio reference! We were all super-pumped to craft a film that documented the very exciting birth of the future of South African surfing.

Armed with hired equipment, 2 bakkies, a quiver of old boards and Cyril Mqadi; Andre, Carlos and I set course for the enchanting town of Umzumbe to make the magic that is now Zulu Surfrider!


Zulu Surf Riders on 24.com

With the build up to the 2008 Encounters documentary film festival we were featured on Morning Live ETV and News24

Check out the link... here


Umzumbe's people and places

Behind the scenes - 'Zulu Surfriders'

While filming their self-funded surf film ‘Zulu Surf Rider’, Andre, Carlos & Brenen (a trio known as Scratch The Surfers), discovered the desperate lack of resources that the passionate young locals were having to learn, and even compete with. Feeling their plea, Scratch The Surfers decided to use the exposure gained by the Zulu Surf Rider to generate awareness and draw attention to the Umzumbe surfing community’s plight. The film documents the amazing potential and passion of these brave young individuals from a community that has been the epicentre of the ‘black surfing movement’ since the late ‘80s.

Blending in, hanging out.

Tracking the natural way.

Loaded and ready to head off...

Letting all it unfold.