The South African film and television industry mourns one of their own following the death of Phillip Hlophe.
Better known as “Bra Phil”, Hlophe died on October 6 at his home in Soweto. He was 56.
Zola Hashatsi of Hashatsi Productions announced his death to the public.
“My heart bleeds to announce the passing of this amazing thespian, who has been part of most TV and film productions in South Africa.
“He passed away this morning at his home. Will send out further details when the family furnishes us with. #RIPPhillipHlophe,” wrote Hashatsi.
Hlophe’s memorial service took place at the Soweto Theatre on Wednesday.
People in the entertainment industry who worked with him shared their heartfelt tributes.
“My heart is completely shattered 💔 Bra Phil has worked on almost all the awards shows that I’ve hosted.
“My very first one, he decided he wasn’t going to leave my side (way below his pay grade), but he saw how young and frightened I was and took it upon himself to make sure I had the confidence I needed to be my best self!” wrote Minnie Dlamini.
She added how Hlophe helped not only her but also others in the industry.
“You brought such life, fun and wisdom to every set. You gave me so much direction on that film set that I will always be grateful for, will hold close and use in your honour.
“The impact you made in shaping this industry and the people in it will never be forgotten by us. We love you so much Baba Wethu. My deepest condolences to the family, sending strength to you all during this time. To the start of your new journey on the other side.”
Tumi Morake, who worked with the film director and actor for more than 14 years, also shared her tribute.
She wrote: “Rest in peace Ta Phil. Thank you. Over the past 14 years, I knew if you were running a set, I’m in great hands, I’m gonna laugh, I’m gonna get a tender moment, and the set’s gonna be a vibe – hard day or not, you would crack the tension so easily with one comment, and everyone is back like they never left!
“Lol, you cracked the whip with a smile tlhe and that effortless laugh. Yho indistry e latlhegetswe, go botlhoko!”
Hlophe’s funeral will take place on Saturday, October 14, at Westpark Cemetery in Johannesburg.
Below are more tributes for Hlophe.
May you rest in peace grootman, One of the best AD’s in the game. I will never forget how he was always keen to jump in and act when we were short of or dropped by featured extras. Great Humour and Brilliant artist. #RIPPhillipHolophe https://t.co/bkqdK6cCZD— Bonga Nkomo DOP 🎥🧘🏾♂️ (@analogninja1) October 7, 2023
He was such an amazing soul!— NAMBITHA (@NAMBITHA) October 7, 2023
I can’t wrap my mind around this!
This man taught me so much! https://t.co/f2da4fax5r