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The Department of

Special Projects

auteur-driven genre films made in africa


Latest Projects

Fried Barry – a Shudder Original

Comedy/Horror | 99 mins

Director: Ryan Kruger

The Trek

Horror/Western | 120 mins

Director: Meekaaeel Adam

Exo Sapien

Sci-Fi/Action | 19 mins

Director: James C. Williamson


About The Department


The Department of Special Projects is a South African film development and production company that specialises in auteur-driven genre films.


We combine local talent with a worldwide network of marketplace decision-makers to create films that excel both commercially and artistically.

The Department is led by award-winning producer, James C. Williamson, who founded the company after almost a decade of working for major international studios. Williamson’s experience in marketing and publicity on major studio pictures gives the Department a competitive edge that ensures each project captures the right audience.

With the celebrated cult hit FRIED BARRY (2020) being picked up as a SHUDDER ORIGINAL and several more films well underway, the Department is carving out a formidable reputation in the genre film community.

Our projects

Learn More


Fried Barry

A shudder original

FRIED BARRY is the South African cult smash hit that has enamored fans and critics alike. Winning 22 awards at festivals around the world – including 5 “Best Film” awards and 4 “Best Lead Actor” awards – FRIED BARRY is one of the most talked about movies of the year, having played at Fantasia, Sitges, Torino, Kyiv Molodist and many more.

Earning a ‘Certified Fresh’ rating on Rotten Tomatoes and rated as one of the top horror films of the year by 7 leading genre film publications, FRIED BARRY has been a hit with critics and fans alike. The FRIED BARRY fanbase is nothing short of explosive, with hundreds of examples of fan art based on the compelling main character and one diehard fan even getting a FRIED BARRY tattoo.

In post-production

The Trek

THE TREK is a western/horror that follows the story of a Dutch-Afrikaans family and their British travel companion as they make the perilous journey across the Kalahari desert in the mid 1800s. Assisted by a mysterious Khoen stranger, the group is preyed upon by the harsh desert; beset by hunger and desperation while being stalked by a terrifying, invisible adversary.

Directed by Meekaaeel Adam
Written by Hannah Massyn, James C. Williamson and Sandulela Asanda

Now available on dust

Exo Sapien

EXO SAPIEN is a high-concept sci-fi short that follows the story of CASS (Liza Claire Scholtz) – the sole survivor of a crashed ship –  as she
learns her true identity in a strange and hostile alternate version of Earth.

Devoid of any memory, her only clue is the mysterious device she carries with her that is constantly counting down towards an unknown climax. Pursued by a group of brutal scavengers and hunted by a terrifying, amorphous entity, Cass must unravel the mysteries of the world before it’s too late.

EXO SAPIEN is now available to watch on the internet’s premiere sci-fi platform DUST.


Contact Us

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The Department of

Special Projects

auteur-driven genre films made in africa

about Us

The Department of Special Projects is a South African-based production company, helmed by producer James C. Williamson, that produces auteur-driven genre films for the local and international market