Jonathan’s first love, since his early theatre days, has always been acting and directing, and armed with great knowledge behind the camera(more details below), he launched his career in front of it, by landing the countries most coveted presenting role, on Top Billing. Since then he has become one of South Africa’s most popular and awarded celebrities, known for his versatility as a presenter, actor, writer, director and philanthropist. After winning season 7 of Strictly Come Dancing SA, he became the first person in the country, and reportedly the world, to win two prime time reality shows (the other being the Top Billing Presenter search where he beat thousands of hopefuls to land the gig). Since then he has traveled the world and shared the screen with the likes of Richard Branson, Channing Tatum, Bruce Willis, Cameron Diaz, Emily Blunt, Ed Sheeran, Peter Jackson, and Ana Wintour, to name a few. He won 2015’s You Spectacular award for Best TV presenter in SA, and SA’s sexiest man. He’s also been named Cosmopolitan’s sexiest man, and has a coveted SA Style award, and GQ best dressed man award.
Jonathan recently hit the big screen in two local blockbusters, Baby Mamas, and 3 Days to Go, playing lead roles in both. He also played lead antagonist Adam Shaw, in the terrifying Hell Trip.
He’s showcased his comedic side with roles in popular local TV productions such as Abo Mzala and Ses’Top La. And played featured characters on the countries most popular soapies, including Isidingo, Binnelanders, and Generations.
In the commercials world Jonathan’s had the lead role in ads for Exclusive Books, Absa, Coca Cola, Toyota, Dettol, Edgars, and Steers. He has modeled for, among others, Woolworths, Nike, FHM, GQ, Gucci, and Calvin Klein, and graced the runways at local and international fashion shows. He was the first ever male to appear on the cover of Maxim in SA.
With his background in theatre Jonathan has always been very comfortable on stage and was the selected MC to open the Pharell Williams concert. He has done MC work for big local and international brands including Vodacom, Discovery, Elizabeth Arden, Nike, Jacobs, Celio, Standard Bank, FNB, Woolworths, BIC, Old Mutual, Dulux, Air Mauritius, Alpha Romeo, Lenovo, Huawei, TWF(biggest government travel company in SA) and Woolworths.
Jonathan started out writing, directing and acting for theatre with the likes of Andrew Buckland and Reza de Wet. He made the big step to film when a script he wrote for Quickies film festival was selected from over 5000 applicants to be produced and screened on art cinemas around the country.
Audiences then voted him as one of SA’s 10 best directors. He went on to star in a popular reality filmmaking show on SABC 3, competing against the other filmmakers. His subsequent two short films won best editing and cinematography. Since then he has shot award winning commercials and corporate videos for, among others, Audi, Garmin, Nestle, Canon, Coca Cola, SAA, Johnnie Walker, Multichoice, Anglo Gold, and United Nations. His Friskies campaign won a coveted Loerie award.
Two-time Academy Award nominee Kevin Harris selected him as one of 6 filmmakers across Africa to be mentored under the auspices of the Rainbow Documentary Collective. He and Kevin have completed their second documentary together, the highly praised Life is Art.
Following its world premiere, the feature film Jozi Kings, which Jonathan co-directed, was nominated for Best Action Film and Best Screenplay at the Nollywood Film Critics Awards in Los Angeles USA, subsequently winning for best film. It was selected to spearhead a revolutionary new distribution platform, Kasi Movie Nights, bringing the magic of movies to the townships. The film was subsequently nominated for best film in the 2013 Africa Magic viewers choice awards, and made official selection for the 2013 Jozi Film Festival. Jonathan’s short film, Lady and Trompie, which he wrote, directed, edited and DOP’d with Isaac Chokwe, was shot for the 48 hr film festival (requiring a movie to be completed in 2 days). It received nominations across the board, winning for best actress and best cinematography.
His keen eye for composition and photography also landed him a position as iPhoneography ambassador for South Africa, showcasing worldwide the photographic and video capabilities of the iPhone, as well as judging the official iphoneography awards.
Jonathan is a family man and passionate about charity work. When he’s not free diving with sharks to create awareness for their conservation(www.sharkwarrior.com), or chasing the highest bungee jump, and other adrenaline fueled adventures, he spends time with the children at Princess Alice adoption home and the Reach for a Dream Foundation.