Where is Heart of the Hunter Filmed? Is it a True Story?

With Mandla Dube occupying the director’s chair, Netflix’s ‘Heart of the Hunter’ is a South African action thriller film that focuses on a retired assassin named Zuko Khumalo, who has buried his days of violence deep down to turn into an unassuming family man. However, his tranquil life gets upended when he receives a call from the daughter of an old friend, asking him to honor an oath he had made years ago. Since her father has been kidnapped, Zuko must dig up his dark past reluctantly and put up a fight against a corrupt politician while uncovering a deadly conspiracy that lies at the heart of the government of South Africa.

Featuring compelling onscreen performances from a group of talented South African actors, including Bonko Khoza, Connie Ferguson, Tim Theron, Masasa Mbangeni, Boleng Mogotsi, Deon Coetzee, Peter Butler, and Connie Chiume, the crime movie unfolds in some incredible South African landscapes — be it the rugged mountain ranges or the hustle and bustle of urban centers. These locations not only set the stage for the engaging and high-octane story but also keep the viewers guessing about the actual sites.

Heart of the Hunter Filming Locations

‘Heart of the Hunter’ was filmed in its entirety in South Africa, primarily in the Western Cape. As per reports, principal photography for the crime film got underway in September 2022 and got wrapped up in a couple of months, in November 2022. Allow us to take you through all the specific sites that make an appearance in the Netflix production!

Western Cape, South Africa

All the pivotal sequences for ‘Heart of the Hunter’ were lensed in the Western Cape, located on South Africa’s southwestern coast. To be specific, the city of Cape Town served as one of the primary production locations as the iconic Cape Town City Hall on Darling Street features various important scenes. Moreover, the filming unit set up camp in and around the 123-hectare neighborhood of the V&A Waterfront to tape key portions. The neighborhood contains the beautiful Table Mountain in the backdrop and is visited by millions of tourists every year. What makes the place all the more beautiful is the art, entrepreneurs, and sustainable design that is associated with it.

While several picturesque exterior scenes were taped around the Swartberg Mountains, some interior sequences were filmed in the Louisvale Wines on Devon Valley Road in the town of Stellenbosch. The venue consists of a tasting room, a restaurant, and 280-degree views, providing the perfect backdrop for weddings and different kinds of events. Furthermore, a few locales of the town of Oudtshoorn were utilized for taping a number of outdoor scenes. Over the years, the Western Cape has hosted the production of many film and TV projects. Some of the notable ones include ‘Lord of War,’ ‘The Brothers Grimsby,’ ‘The Last Days of American Crime,’ ‘The Umbrella Men,’ and ‘CI5: The New Professionals.’

Is Heart of the Hunter a True Story?

‘Heart of the Hunter’ is adapted from the 2002 eponymous book written by the popular South African novelist and screenwriter Deon Meyer. Moreover, the screenwriter Willem Grobler made some necessary changes to the original script in order to smoothen the transition from the pages to the screen. Thus, the high-octane action movie that we watch is the result of the combined efforts of two creative and heavily talented writers, who made the most of their excellent penmanship and experience in the industry.

Predominant themes of a corrupt government and a retired assassin pulled right back into action are a couple of themes that have been explored in various movies and TV shows, which is why many of you might find certain aspects and elements of ‘Heart of the Hunter’ familiar. One of the movies in which you are likely to find some similarity and resemblance in themes is the 2020 Italian action thriller ‘The Beast’ (originally titled ‘La Belva’).

Helmed by Ludovico Di Martino, the crime movie revolves around an unstable war veteran named Leonida Riva who gets back to his old ways when his daughter, Teresa, gets kidnapped. Having spent several years away from his family, now he must unleash the beast and try to rescue his estranged daughter. Besides the storyline, the character of Leonida is also quite similar to the protagonist of ‘Heart of the Hunter.’ Overall, the South African film has no connection with reality.

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