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SEE US (5)

Love Africa and Partners take home seven awards at International Tourism Film Festival Africa

Love Africa Marketing attended the annual International Tourism Film Festival Africa (ITFFA) in Johannesburg in June, and took home seven awards for five films that were submitted with our partners. 

ITFFA was held over three days in Sandton, Johannesburg and announced its winners on Friday, 14 June 2024 at the red carpet event. This year, 436 films were entered from 61 countries. 

Love Africa, in collaboration with our partners, received the prestigious ‘Pinnacle Award’, a ‘Directors Choice’ award, two golds, and three silvers across various conservation, wildlife, and tourism categories. 

In partnership with Love Africa Marketing, Babanango Game Reserve, and WILDTRUST, most of the films were shot in KwaZulu-Natal, highlighting its conservation efforts and natural heritage.

“These films were created as impactful stories in conservation and tourism in South Africa – and we are very excited that they have received the recognition they deserve on an international platform. KwaZulu-Natal, in particular, has much to be proud of in our landscapes, our people, and our wildlife. It was a privilege to work with key partners in shaping and filming the work on the ground.” Nicola Gerrard, Love Africa Marketing. 

The winners were selected by a panel of 46 jury members, equally representing the film and digital creation industries and the tourism sector. The films were judged on seven key criteria: impact, creativity, sound, style, subject matter, storytelling, and goal effectiveness, with scores out of 10 awarded to each entry. After three rigorous rounds of judging, 272 films advanced to the final round, with 23 finalists, 61 Silver Awards, 41 Gold Awards, and 3 prestigious Pinnacle Awards being bestowed upon the most outstanding submissions. 

“It is a privilege to capture these stories through the lens and have them recognised amongst other leading
filmmakers across the world. Thank you for giving our South African films the platform to shine.” Sven Musica – cinematographer, Love Africa.

WILDTRUST and Love Africa win the Pinnacle Award for SEE US

Award-winning Films:

‘SEE US,’ produced with long standing partners, WILDTRUST, took two awards: The prestigious Pinnacle Award and a gold in the Wildlife and Conservation category. It explores South Africa’s untamed coastline and follows two intrepid underwater explorers uncover life below the surface, revealing the secret sanctuaries that sharks and rays embrace as their refuge.

Our production team: Nicola Gerrard, Janelle Barnard, Sven Musica, Lauren van Nijkerk, Steve Benjamin, Mnqobi Zuma, Thuthukani Makhoba, Leigh de Necker, Thandeka Hlongwa, Devin Trull. 


‘This is Home’ was awarded Gold in the Sustainable and Responsible Tourism category. The documentary follows efforts to reintroduce the iconic black rhino into Babanango Game Reserve, aligning with the reserve’s rewilding strategy.

Our production team: Nicola Gerrard, Janelle Barnard, Sven Musica, Kirsty Baker. 


⁠’The Battlefields’ is another Babanango Game Reserve and Love Africa collaboration that was awarded a Silver under the ‘ Historical Culture’ category. The game reserve lies between the Valley of Kings and the Zulu battlegrounds, offering guests more than just the safari experience. The short film highlights and commemorates the importance of the area.

Our production team: Nicola Gerrard, Janelle Barnard, Sven Musica, Kirsty Baker. 

Babanango (1)

‘Return of the King’ took home a Silver in the category ‘Wildlife and Conservation. This film documents the relocation of two male lions from Nambiti Private Game Reserve to Babanango Game Reserve, celebrating the reintroduction of lions to the area for the first time in 150 years. 

Our production team: Nicola Gerrard, Janelle Barnard, Sven Musica.

Babanango (3)

Madwaleni River Lodge’ was awarded a Silver in the ‘Tourism – Services’ category, and is a short promo introducing Babanango Game Reserve’s new ultra-luxury lodge; Madwaleni River Lodge. The lodge is set alongside the White Umfolozi River and encompasses the rich local heritage and culture of the region. 

Our production team: Nicola Gerrard, Janelle Barnard, Sven Musica, Kirsty Baker. 

Babanango (2)

ITFFA Directors' Choice Award

The coveted ITFFA Festival Directors’ Choice Award was presented to Love Africa founder and MD, Nicola Gerrard, ‘in recognition of her exceptional contributions to filmmaking and advocacy in the Wildlife and Conservation and Tourism categories.’ 


“The Festival Directors’ Choice Award was such an unexpected surprise, but I could not think of someone more deserving of it,” said Marketing Manager Janelle Barnard. “The ethos of Love Africa Marketing stems from Nicola’s drive to bring attention to the conservation stories that largely go untold, so it was really special to see the impact she has had through Love Africa Marketing be recognised on an international stage.  

“That being said, this was not possible without the hard work that is done by our conservation and tourism partners, and their trust in us to tell their stories,” Janelle adds. “These short films are a result of many hours of meetings, strategy, filming, editing, coffee, driving, flying, tense moments, hilarious moments, tears and lots of teamwork. Thank you International Tourism Film Festival Africa for recognising our work on a global platform.”

About International Tourism Film Festival Africa

ITFFA was founded in 2019 and recognises video content relevant to the tourism and travel industry. The festival aims to honour and promote innovative and exceptional content related to promoting tourism services, products, and destinations. The ITFFA awards was held in Sandton, Johannesburg at Hotel Sky and hosted by CapeInfo.