The Great Trek
The Great Trek, is a reality based docu-series that produces cause-driven 'Pathfinder' eco-safari adventures for high profile celebrity guests in Africa.
Hosted by James Suter, noted South African safari guide, wildlife filmmaker and conservationist. James and guest venture deep into frontline Africa to shine a light on hot-button ecological and environmental issues affecting the continent as experienced first-hand through the eyes, minds and hearts of celebrity 'Pathfinders' and the people they meet on the way.
Backed up by a courageous, tight knit, dynamic and diverse crew who have been crafting beautiful and profoundly affecting award winning stories from the frontline of African conservation for close to a decade.
[POSITIVE PATHWAYS THROUGH AFRICA, THE WORLD.
[ MAKE THIS INTO 3 SLIDES ]
As the cradle of humanity, Africa is a global heritage, and the need to defend it's wildlife and wilderness is a global responsibility. The challenges to the continent have never been greater. But in the face of relentless poaching, deforestation, corruption, pollution, war, poverty and population growth, the problems seem so big and out of control they lead to feelings of apathy and helplessness. A situation so serious, or sad people become numb to it....
But these stories are not tragedies, they are the ultimate dramas. Where the stakes really are life and death. Drama connects. Audiences always relate and engage with real human stories told well. This is where James and the team come in, to tell these stories using the global reach of celebrities.
Through powerful storytelling, world class cinematography, and state of the art technology, the show focuses on the people and organizations doing the work in the field that are are truly impactful and making a difference.
Real life drama shown in a way that captures much wider audiences than those only interested in wildlife and conservation. High stakes storytelling that attracts and engages critical mass in the media culture to always return the focus to Africa.
Structure / Format – Self contained docu-style hybrid / hidden format show
Each episode has a common structure but different locations and experiences uniquely tailored to the guest Pathfinder.
Bespoke adventures in far flung wilderness areas, on the frontlines of conservation, close encounters with wildlife, people, conservationists, communities. Walking dangerous game or confronting the uglier aspects (nsfw?) of man/nature conflict/ the edge of extinction…. A no frills adventure where for a few days they are separated from their comforts, become part of the team under James’ expert guidance, and experience the joy, the heartbreak and sense of wonder of Africa beside our team...
Each journey is tailored around a mission dear to the Pathfinder but experienced from a different/fresh angle or perspective for their supporters/followers. They will be involved in the telling of their story.
Conversations will be directed but largely unscripted. Daily interviews are conducted by James about the day and how they felt, what happened and where they are at in their journey.
Filming takes place “around the clock” to capture the full spectrum of the experience, the unguarded moments around a fireside, the challenge of being disconnected from technology, sleeping under the stars, etc. etc. behind-the-scenes, humorous, powerful and unplanned. Africa can have a powerful effect on people and / and the chance to see famous people let their guard down, makes for compelling content.
moved, touched, changed by the experience [seeing people we think we know well profoundly affected] something they will never forget. TECHNOLOGY and the amazing impact TECHNOLOGY is having and will have on Africa [malaria & mobile phones/Gates Foundation]…*The show’s objective is to create authentic adventures for it’s pathfinders but safety and security will be paramount. The team will never be far from a support team of rangers, medics, etc.
The show is highly visual taking full advantage of Africa's legendary scenery, from the sweeping plains of the Serengeti to the pinnacle of Mount Kilimanjaro, the epic Rift Valley, to the impenetrable jungles of Congo and the vast watery expanse of the Okavango Delta.
Every adventure of In Africa is a journey of discovery into nature but also a personal journey.
The world of is full of drama, no matter how much preparation, it’s impossible to anticipate every eventuality. This is where experience, steely resolve and quick witted crews are needed.
Engaging, and meaningful docu-series that will contribute to positive change in Africa through beautifully filmed and conceived adventures...This is what In Africa brings to the screen.
Through a break with the everyday world, guests get a different/fresh angle or perspective they can later share with their supporters/followers.
Introductory interview 'Pathfinder" guest in their ‘normal life’ prior to the trip – their excitement, apprehension
Arrival in Africa, meeting James and orientation with the team
Briefing on the issue at hand, threatened species/eco system / key players making a difference.
Travel to the affected area experiencing wildlife and local people
Adventurous activity such as walking dangerous game, horseback safari, camping out, de-horning a rhino
Meeting and time spent with individuals directly involved in the cause/issue
Impactful human moments/funny moments/emotional moments
Pathfinder input into crafting the message, editing the episode
Interview with the Pathfinder at the end of the trip
Words from the team at the end of the trip (and behind-the-scenes footage)
viral Call-to-Action built into each guest episode so it becomes a targeted fundraising mechanism for their ‘cause’.
BANKSY The world renowned anonymous street artist, political activist, Oscar nominated film director and avowed environmentalist has created arrestedly powerful and insightful street art all over the world, but never in Africa. The premiere episode of In Africa will change that. The episode will focus on pollution, eco system protection and activism. Undercover, Banksy will create new pieces in Kibera slum in Nairobi, Kenya, the largest slum in Africa. The works will be strategically placed on NGO properties as an unorthodox fundraising mechanism for the charities and will ‘make news’ providing a high profile launch for series one of In Africa.
Greta Thunberg is a 15 year old environmental activist who rose to prominence in 2018 when her school climate strike spread worldwide making her a prominent spokesperson for environmental causes and global warming in particular. Greta has travelled across the world (avoiding airplanes) to speak to leading political figures and argue for urgent action to reverse an imminent environmental disaster. Greta will travel to the Sahel where the Addax Gazelle and Savannah Elephant are seriously endangered due to climate fueled armed conflicts. She will then visit Cape Town, to see how a 1000 year drought brought the first major city in the world within weeks of running out of water.
PRINCE HARRY Pathfinder Prince Harry who said “I am more myself than anywhere in the world when I am in Africa", will spend a week deep in the bush with James and the team on a safari tightly focused on the issues dear to the prince's heart: environmental and sustainable economic development via eco tourism and counter poaching operations. James’s team have previously worked with Prince's Trust organizations on environmental issues.
LEONARDO DI CAPRIO
The Oscar winning actor and global icon is as well known for his environmental advocacy as his on-screen work. In this episode of In Africa, Leo will be go on an in-depth adventure into the heart of the Maasai Mara to confront head on, climate resiliency, eco system protection & and support of indigenous communities. It was once a rite of passage for a Maasai warrior to kill a lion to prove his bravery. But the relationship between lions and Maasai has changed and they now live alongside and help protect them. Leonardo and James will dig into this transition and how it is sustaining the local community.
TAYLOR SWIFT The multi Grammy winning popstar will visit Senegal with James to see up close and personal the positive impact of arts and education programs on children in poverty. She will visit a HipHop workshop in Pikine township and perform with local artists in an impromptu jam at Dakar’s iconic hilltop lighthouse venue Le Phare, with views of the city’s 330 mile coastline. To close out the episode the team will visit the legendary Flamingo swarms at Senegal’s Djoudj National Park, a World Heritage site.
When Obama became president his portrait was painted on walls, buses and T-shirts across Africa. Businesses, schools and even children were named after him. This episode will retrace his steps as "son of the soil" to Africa as he visits conservation leaders from his Young African Leaders Initiative (Yali) that help youths on the continent prepare for leadership positions by providing training, networking, and skills building opportunities. More than 250,000 African’s have since joined the network. As one of the most recognized and beloved people in Africa, his episode presents many opportunities for groundbreaking TV.
Pathfinders are the celebrity guests on In Africa. It is their cause and adventure. James is the guide.