Emmy-award winning documentary filmmaker based in Cape Town, South Africa. His films are acclaimed for their intimacy, social insight and formal innovation, and have all won local and international awards, showing at major global festivals and galleries such as IDFA, Toronto IFF, Hot Docs, Visions du Reel, AFI, MOMA New York, the Jeu de Paume Paris and the Sydney FF. He produced, filmed and edited Shameela Seedat’s films WHISPERING TRUTH TO POWER (2018) which won the Special Jury prize at Hot Docs, the prestigious 2019 African Studies Association Film Award, a Bronze Stallion at FESPACO and many other awards, as well as her follow up film AFRICAN MOOT (2022) which recently premiered at Hot Docs and we premiere in Spain in AFRIKALDIA. He co-directed SCENES FROM A DRY CITY (2018), which won the World Press Photo Digital Online Video as well as multiple other awards, as well as GIRL, TAKEN (2022), currently on Paramount Plus.
Verster has taught documentary classes at Columbia University New York, University of Cape Town, University of the Witwatersrand and elsewhere, and has published on documentary in various journals and anthologies. He currently convenes a think tank on creative documentary at the University of the Western Cape. He has appeared on various festival juries and has had ten festival retrospectives or special focus series on his work, most recently at Indiana University, Bloomington (USA).
1998 Pavement Aristocrats; documentary
1999 The Story of “Mbube”; documentary
1999 The Man Who Would Kill Kitchener; documentary
2000 The Granite War; documentary
2000 Guilty; Tv movie
2002 A Lion’s Trail; documentary
2002 When the War is Over; documentary
2005 The Mothers’ House; documentary
2008 Sea Point Days; documentary
2014 The Dream of Sharazad; documentary
2018 Whispering Truth to Power; documentary (producer)
2018 Scenes from a Dry City; documentary short (Director/Producer)
2022 African Moot; documentary (producer)
2022 Girl, Taken; documentary
Simon Wood is an Emmy nominated filmmaker based in Cape Town, South Africa, whose films have screened at the world’s largest film festivals and won numerous awards in Africa, Asia, Europe and North America.
Wood’s latest film, CONTAINER, premiered at the 78th Venice IFF later screening at the Tribeca Film Festival 2022. A collaboration with Indian artist Meghna Singh, it is the first VR film screened at Nobel Prize Giving Week in Sweden. Confronting slavery and capitalism through an ever-transforming shipping container, it makes the past present, the invisible visible, focusing on the hidden bodies that make consumer society possible.
In 2020, Wood received the World Press Photo Online Video of Year award for SCENES FROM A DRY CITY. Produced by Academy Award Winner Laura Poitras and Charlotte Cooke at Field of Vision, it has screened at over fifty festivals and been recognized by juries across the globe, winning Wood his first Emmy nomination for Outstanding Short Documentary. In 2017 he made THE SILENT FORM, a collaboration with one of South Africa’s most successful artists, sculptor Dylan Lewis. It won four awards, including Best Documentary Short and Best Cinematography, at the 2017 SAFTAS (South African Film and Television Awards). Like his earlier ORBIS (2015), it premiered in Toronto at Hot Docs and screened at festivals around the world. Wood’s first film FORERUNNERS, an examination of four members of South Africa’s new black middle class attempting balance the traditions childhood with western consumerism, was selected for IDFA in 2011, garnered awards in North America and Europe, and was screened on Al Jazeera’s Witness. His documentary UNTAMED, currently in post-production, was selected for the Final Cut at the Venice International Film Festival and IFP’s Spotlight on Documentaries for Independent Film Week in New York City.
2011 Forerunners; medium-length documentary
2014 Orbis; documentary short
2016 The Silent Form; documentary short
2018 Scenes From a Dry City; documentary short (Director)
2021 Container; VR short
2022 Girl-Taken; documentary
Post-production Untamed; documentary