Christa Schamberger-Young
 
+27 11 440 3477
Independent Casting Director
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Cape Town & Johannesburg
(The Casting Connection cc)
South Africa

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2003 to 2005 2006 to 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012201320142015

News and Highlights - 2015
December 2015
Blood in the Desert...
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Filming  Of Kings and Prophets is nearing completion on locations in the Western Cape Winelands of South Africa, with several South African actors in recurring and supporting roles. Several extensive outdoor sets have been constructed by the South African scenic services crew. Their speed, efficiency and quality has drawn enthusiastic praise from ABC Studios.
The series is an epic biblical saga of faith, ambition and betrayal depicting the clash between supporters of the battle-weary King Saul (Ray Winstone) and followers of the resourceful young shepherd David (Olly Rix). The outcome of that clash has reverberated down history for two thousand years.

The ABC Television Network has announced that Of Kings and Prophets will premiere in the USA on Tuesday March 8 2016.

November 2015
Smoke On The Horizon!
Christa Casting Credit Black Sails.jpgThose who have been watching Black Sails Season One on satellite TV in South Africa, and certainly anyone who has subscribed to the series online, will hopefully recognise Christa's screen Credit amongst the up-front titles of Seasons One and Two.  Black Sails Season Three will release in the USA on Saturday, January 23 in 2016. By the end of Season Three, we'd cast around ninety South African actors in roles from one-liners to episodic supports and Series Regulars. Black Sails Season Four, green-lit already in mid 2015, begins shooting soon, again based at the Cape Town Film Studios, where yet another sound stage and construction workshop are nearing completion.
August 2015
The Princess who climbed up a tree...
...and came down A Queen

That was the gist of the first "Real Fairy Story" I was told as a young lad growing up in The Union of South Africa,  a part of the British Empire as we were then. The beautiful Princess Elizabeth came to Africa  for a holiday in Kenya with her young husband. The couple spent a night at the remote Treetops Hotel in Kenya, and when they returned to civilisation the young woman was greeted as a Queen, for her beloved father had died suddenly during the night.
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Over sixty years later that incident is just a fragment of the swathe of history that The Crown will portray.
Written by Peter Morgan and based on his play “The Audience.” The Crown tells the inside story of two of the most famous addresses in the world, Buckingham Palace and 10 Downing Street. In doing so, it follows the intrigues, romances and machinations behind events that shaped the second half of the 20th century. While the bulk of the series will obviously be shot in the UK, the Princess' holiday in Kenya will be filmed in South Africa.
The Crown is produced by Left Bank Pictures and Sony Pictures TV for Netflix, with Andrew Eaton as producer, and Stephen Daldry, Philip Martin and Julian Jarrold directing.
July 2015
Winter Break... What Winter Break?
Conventional wisdom used to be that the Cape Town film industry went into hibernation during the rainy, storm-blasted winter months. Successful Agents took holidays in sunny Europe, enthusiastic actors went to the National Arts Festival in Grahamstown to put on plays and catch 'flu, while the rest of us put on woolly jumpers and caught up on reading while snuggled up to bowls of soup.
Most South African productions tend to be based in Johannesburg, where it hardly ever rains in winter, which means that Christa tends to spend more time in our Johannesburg studio as the international productions wind down in Cape Town.

"The Winter Break" may have been true during the immediate aftermath of global financial melt-down, but since the 2012 "Season" there appeares to have been a flattening of the annual flood and drought cycle. On the one hand, local feature film production has revived and on the other, a cycle of poor rainfall may have encouraged producers to take their chances with the weather, which generally isn't as bad as "up country" folk make out. The result of this is that there are about twenty local and international projects in various stages of production across the country.

July 2015
Of Kings And Prophets prepares for battle

Of_Kings_And_Prophets_ABC.jpgA biblical drama from ABC Studios, set in the Pre-Christian Era and centered around a battle-weary king, a powerful and resentful prophet, and a resourceful young shepherd.
The series follows Saul, the King of Israel, his family, and his political rivals. Filming will take place near Cape Town during the second half of 2015 for release on ABC Television.
 
 

July 2015
Queen of Katwe wraps in Johannesburg...
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It was a rare pleasure to meet the "real" Robert Katende who was on set as advisor to Director Mira Nair. This remarkable man coached Phiona Mutesi and continues to teach hundreds of young Ugandan children to play chess.
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Joanitta Bewulira-Wandera
, who was the Ugandan Casting Director, also played the role of Mrs Gali, a philanthropic socialite.







The Ugandans were bundled up against the cold of a Highveld winter and couldn't wait to get back to the tropical heat of their homeland.
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Dinaz Stafford and some of her SA Extras Department Assistants on the set of Queen Of Katwe. The epitome of grace under pressure, Dinaz has worked closely with Mira Nair for many years and has an infallible knack of setting the look and feel of each scene.





July 2015
Siege of Jadotville wraps in Johannesburg...
Irish_captives_in_Katanga_1961.jpgThe Siege of Jadotville is a geo-political action thriller about the siege of 150 UN Irish troops led by Commandant Pat Quinlan in the Congo in 1961. After the pro-western rebel leader of Katanga Province, Moise Tshombe, killed the Congolese President, Patrice Lumumba, a covert struggle for control of the region's uranium mines ensued between the USA, France and the USSR.
Quinlan and his troops came under attack by a force of 3,000 local troops led by French and Belgian Mercenaries working for the mining companies. Jamie Dornan (Fifty Shades of Grey) plays Commandant Pat Quinlan, the Irishman who led the UN battalion.
This story of extraordinary bravery was left untold for too long because of sensitivity arising from geo-political chicanery by several Great Powers, which led to poorly supported Irish troops being left in an untenable situation.
While the bulk of the major roles were played by Irish actors, we were able to cast more than a dozen South African actors in supporting roles.
The project was developed in association with the Irish Film Board and is an official Irish/South African co-production. Richie Smith directed from a script by Kevin Brodbin for Parallel Films and Out Of Africa Productions.

June 2015
Cameras roll on Noem My Skollie
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Noem My Skollie
("Call Me Scallywag"? "Call Me Thief"?), the remarkable true story of one man's rise above the deprivation of the notorious Cape Flats, has started filming on location around Cape Town. During a short rehearsal period the cast of young actors portraying the members of The Young Ones gang had an opportunity to meet script writer Mr
. John Fredericks, on whose life story the film is based.




Director Daryne Joshua with Gershwin Mias (Shorty), Gantane Kusch (Gimba), John Fredericks (Script writer), David Max-Brown (Producer).Ephraim Gordon (
Assistant Casting Director), DJ Moton (Abie), Christian Bennett (Gif)Skollie John Fredericks.jpgThe Writer
As a young man in the 1960s, John Fredericks almost inevitably became embroiled in the gang culture prevalent in an agglomeration of deprived "Coloured Townships" created by Apartheid's infamous Group Areas Act. After several scrapes with the law and some months in prison, he made a lasting marriage and avoided being drawn back into a life of crime, but endured many years of low-paid work. Always a story-teller, he published a volume of poetry and became a successful documentary film maker. Fredericks' own feature film script has been picked up by satelite broadcaster M-Net, and is being produced by David Max-Brown and Moshidi Motshegwa of Maxi-D Productions, with Daryne Joshua directing.

March 2015
Queen of Katwe
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The story of Phiona Mutesi, a young girl from the slums of Katwe, Uganda who, with the help of her coach, Robert Katende, becomes a chess prodigy. While most of the film will be shot on location in Uganda, some interior scenes will be re-created in South Africa. 
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Mira Nair (Mississippi Masala, Monsoon Wedding, and The Namesake) is perfectly suited as Director, since she has lived in Uganda for some years and knows both Phiona and Robert.
 Although Phiona is still at school she dedicates time to uplifting other young women from Katwe. You can read her story and support the outreach by visiting
http://queenofkatwe.com/books/the-queen-of-katwe

March 2015
Noem My Skollie
Skollie CB_0005.JPGAlthough almost all our work involves finding cast for international features and television, we do try to make time to support South African projects as they occur. For about six months we have been assisting with a talent search for Noem My Skollie  ("Call Me Scallywag"? "Call Me Thief"?), a remarkable true story of one man's rise above the deprivation of the notorious Cape Flats.
As a young man in the 1960s, John Fredericks almost inevitably became embroiled in the gang culture prevalent in an agglomeration of deprived "Coloured Townships" created by Apartheid's infamous Group Areas Act. After several scrapes with the law and some months in prison, he made a lasting marriage and avoided being drawn back into a life of crime, but endured many years of low-paid work. Always a story-teller, he published a volume of poetry and became a successful documentary film maker. Fredericks' own feature film script has been picked up by satelite broadcaster M-Net, and is being produced by David Max-Brown and Moshidi Motshegwa of Maxi-D Productions, with Daryne Joshua directing.
Skollie_Ephraim 392.jpg
Cape Town actors Ephraim Gordon and Christian Bennett, as Assitant Casting Directors, have reached into their own community, finding scores of enthusiastic, talented actors to fill the many roles in the script. The process of auditioning these sadly under-utilised actors over six months has been truly heart-warming and uplifting. Hopefully 
Noem My Skollie will engender more films about the Coloured community which rise above the tired stereotypes.

January 2015
Wallander in Africa

Adapted from the Swedish novelist Henning Mankell's Kurt Wallander novels, this BBC mini-series franchise has been running since 2008, and stars Kenneth Branagh as the brooding police inspector. The final episodes have been filmed in Sweden, but the first episode, based on Mankell's book The White Lioness, is set in South Africa and were filmed in and around Cape Town during January 2015.Lemogang Tsipa.jpg
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Starring opposite Branagh is South African actress Bonnie Mbuli as a dedicated policewoman who gives the troubled visitor a new perspective on his own life. Veteran actor John Kani, local TV stars Tumisho Masha and Deon Lotz have cameo roles, while relative newcomer to the screen Lemogang Tsipa takes on a challenging and emotional role opposite Sir Kenneth.





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