||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (July 2011)|
27 November 1950 
Johannesburg, South Africa
|Occupation||Film maker, conservationist|
|Spouse(s)||Gillian van Houten (TV news anchor) (m. 1995)|
|Children||3: Daughter Savannah and twin boys, Sean and Tao.|
John Varty (born 27 November 1950) is a controversial South African wildlife filmmaker who has made more than 30 documentaries and one feature film. Varty is also leading a controversial project which aims to create a free-ranging, self-sustaining tiger population outside of Asia. However, some experts feel that this is a money making venture by Varty in an attempt to earn money from the tourism industry. This was documented in a film called "Living with Tigers".
After his father, Charles, died, John and his brother, Dave Varty, terminated the hunting activities and converted it into a game reserve in 1973. They renamed it Londolozi, which is the Zulu word for "protector of living things". Since then it has become one of the top resorts in the world and was included in Travel and Leisure's world's best for 4 of the last 5 years.
John made several documentaries that were widely distributed: Living with tigers, Shingalana, Jamu, the Orphaned Leopard. Swift and silent won an American Cable TV award in 1993 and The Silent Hunter won The New York Gold Award.
In 2011, John Varty starred in Leopard Queen, a documentary about a leopard he has filmed for 17 years.
Tiger re-wilding project
In 2000, John started a Bengal tiger re-wilding project near Philippolis in the Free State. Starting with captive bred tigers, the aim is to establish a wild tiger population outside of Asia. In 2003, the progress was documented in a The Discovery Channel production called Living with Tigers. In 2011, National Geographic made a second documentary called Tiger Man of Africa.
The project has drawn a lot of criticism: Firstly, his financial backers accused him on national television of misusing funds and that his only motivation has been to make money. Funds for the project were initially supplied by Li Quan and her husband, investment banker Stuart Bray. However, the Vartys were accused of financial mismanagement after a legal audit uncovered that he had borrowed R5.7-million of the funds for extraneous and personal expenses. Quan and Bray subsequently established the Save China's Tigers Laohu Valley Reserve, also near Philippolis. In 2013, Li Quan made similar allegations against Bray regarding the Save China's Tigers charity.
Secondly, scientists have also established that the tigers are not genetically pure, which would imply that the project has no conservation value.
Thirdly, the Varty's have been accused by their investors and conservationists of manipulating the behavior of the tigers for the film's production, with the tigers believed to be unable to hunt. Stuart Bray, who had originally invested a large sum of money in the project, claimed that he and his wife, Li Quan, watched the film crew "[chase] the prey up against the fence and into the path of the tigers just for the sake of dramatic footage."
Lastly, the Karoo is not suitable habitat for tigers.
On 29 March 2012 John Varty was critically injured when one of his tigers attacked him on his farm near Philippolis. He suffered multiple injures and puncture wounds all over his body. He spent approximately one month in hospital.
In January 2014 KIA South Africa released a TV commercial, Tiger in Africa, with John Varty's footage shot at Tiger Canyons 
- Paper Tigers "Paper Tigers: South Africa". Retrieved 27 August 2011.
- "Nine Lives, author John Varty". Retrieved 17 August 2011.
- "Tiger Canyons - to create a tiger population outside Asia url=http://www.jvbigcats.co.za/mission.htm".
- Nelson Mandela's view on Londolozi
- http://tv.nytimes.com/show/51746/Jamu-The-Orphaned-Leopard/overview Summary
- Tiger man of Africa
- "Tiger Man of Africa". Fox News.
- "Vartys 'misused' tiger funds". news24. 18 March 2003. Retrieved 27 August 2011.
- Arrick, A., Mckinney, K. (2007) Purrrfect Breed? TylerPaper.com, 13 August 2007 online
- "Discovery Film Proclaimed A Fraud; Broadcaster to be Sued". Retrieved 27 August 2011.
- Maxine, A. (2001). "Releasing Tigers. Tiger Moon Sanctuary.". Tiger Territory.