Born and raised in Johannesburg, Thati Pele is a statistician turned film director. Her work is inspired by her upbringing. She interrogates intimate relationships in an aim to give room to reflect on gender, social norms, politics and the unflappable optimism of the human condition. Thati won a scholarship to study her masters in filmmaking at New York University (N.Y.U.) where she won the prestigious Spike Lee grant. She went on to complete a competitive production rotation at Universal Studios Los Angeles. Thati made the short film, LERATO, which premiered at S.X.S.W. Film Festival, won her the Best Director Award at the New York Fusion Film Festival as well as the New Talent prize at CICLOPE Africa 2019. She has written and produced short films that have travelled to festivals and channels including Tribeca and HBO. Now back in South Africa, Thati directs award winning commercials and hit streaming shows for Netflix including episodes on the second and third seasons of BLOOD & WATER. Her latest for the streamer, SAVAGE BEAUTY, bows 12 May. Thati is in development of her first feature film the wonderfully dark comedy drama BRACE YOURSELF which was invited to the Realness 2020 lab and the 2021 Locarno Directors Lab in Switzerland. Together with producer Cait Pansegrouw Thati is a participant of Statement Films / Topic’s inaugural African women storyteller’s scheme which has now been accepted to Rotterdam’s Cinemart 2023.
Represented by David Kayser