Digital Scribe



James Whyle turned from acting to full time writing in 1994 when, for the first time, it became possible for the real issues of South Africa to be addressed on South African Television. Among his film credits as an actor are Sarafina, Place of Weeping, 10th of a Second and The Stick. 

James was head writer for the second half of series 1 of TV3’s acclaimed Hard Copy. He wrote the opening and closing episodes of series 111 of TV2’S Emmy nominated Zero Tolerance, as well as acting as consultant head writer. He continues to write radio drama for the BBC. Dancing with the Dead was broadcast in the U.K. in February 2002 on Radio 4. The leading role was played by Richard E Grant. A second BBC commission, A Man Called Rejoice, was re-broadcast for the third time in May 2004. It has been  published as Rejoice Burning in a collection, New South African Plays by Aurora Metro Publications. He’s just finished work on M-Net’s Snitch 11, where he acted as story consultant in development phases, and wrote 12 of the 22 episodes. James is a senior writer on TV3’s Isidingo writing team.

In 1981 James wrote his first play, National Madness , based on his experience in, and escaping from, the SANDF. National Madness was performed at the Market and Baxter Theatres in the early eighties and published in a collection - Market Plays (1).  His second play, Hellhound, was performed at the Market Theatre in 1992. A story, Sapper Fijn and the Cow appears in The Penguin Book of Contemporary South African Short Stories. (2)

Other work includes writing feature articles for Playboy, Style and Sunday Times Lifestyle magazines.

1 -  Edited by Stephen Gray - Publisher AD. Donker. 1st published 1986, reprinted 1991. ISBN 0 86852 070 5.
2 -  Penguin Books 1993. ISBN 0 140 237267

James Whyle is a member of the South African Screen Writers Union, SASWU

You can contact him at or leave a message or comment on his Blog


Otelo Burning  - Little Jozi township is burning, but all Otelo and New Year want to do, is surf. Screenplay developed by Cinga Productions in association with the National Film and Video Foundation.

Zero Tolerance - Sean Taylor played a forensic investigator seconded from the NIS to track down a radical bomber.

Comedy - Two very different men consider the nature of sex and relationships.

Radio Drama. A Man Called Rejoice, was re-broadcast by the BBC for the third time in May, 2004. See review.
Direction was by senior BBC producer, Claire Grove.

And the Dead Watch Over Us -  Some reactions to the novel from readers on Litopia and YouWriteOnThe Query, and Biko's Death.

Growing up in South Africa, looking into the eye of the beast and bumping into Nelson Mandela at the Shul: Marching Towards Nelson

“Fear dropped in like an olive.” Drinking godly cocktails in Madeira: Father Antonio’s Black Label.

Sex, art and Leon Shuster

Hugh Lewin, the bandit out of jail: Bandiet

Rian Malan

Barney Simon

Some of these pieces have also appeared on: Pif Magazine and Identity Theory.

Take-Away Shakespeare Co

King Lear

Antony and Cleopatra



 View my portfolio at Hire James Whyle for freelance Blog Writing / Editing, Screen/Script Writing/Editing, and Article Writing/Editing.