Biyi Bandele, a prolific filmmaker, has passed on.
He died on Sunday, August 7 and his death was announced by his daughter Temi via a Facebook post.
“I am heartbroken to share the sudden and unexpected death on Sunday, 7th of August in Lagos of my father, Biyi Bandele,” the post reads.
Describing her father, she said he was “a loyal friend and beloved father. He was a storyteller to his bones, with an unblinking perspective, singular voice and wisdom which spoke boldly through all of his art, in poetry, novels, plays and on screen. He told stories that made a profound impact and inspired many all over the world. His legacy will live on through his work.”
“He was taken from us much too soon. He had already said so much so beautifully, and had so much more to say. We ask everyone to please respect the privacy of his family and friends as we grieve his loss.”
Bandele, who was born on October 13, 1967, in Kafanchan, Kaduna State. He studied dramatic arts at the University of Ife and won the BBC Playwriting Competition while he was a student. Then, he relocated to London and worked at the Royal Court Theatre, where Wole Soyinka and others developed their careers. He met Danny Boyle, a well-known director who was then only a stagehand, there. He began writing before turning twelve.
Bandele made his directorial debut with the Nigerian civil-war themed drama movie “Half of a Yellow Sun”. His television works include the third season of MTV’s “Shuga” and the Netflix Original Series “Blood Sisters.”
In addition, he has written several plays, including Rain; Marching for Fausa (1993); Resurrections in the Season of the Longest Drought (1994); and Two Horsemen (1994) which won the Best New Play award at the 1994 London New Plays Festival.
His literary works as a novelist include The Man Who Came in from the Back of Beyond (1991), The Street (1999), and the 2007 book Burma Boy.
His most recent film, “Elesin Oba, The King’s Horseman,” a Netflix and Ebonylife TV co-production that is an adaptation of Wole Soyinka’s classic tragedy “Death and The King’s Horseman,” will have its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival in Canada in September 2022.