Top director, novelist playwright, and filmmaker, Biyi Bandele, has died. He died at the age of 54.
Temi Bandele, the deceased’s daughter who issued the statement on behalf of the family, described him as “a prodigiously talented writer and film-maker, as well as a loyal friend and beloved father.”
The statement reads, “I am heartbroken to share the sudden and unexpected death on Sunday 7th of August in Lagos of my father Biyi Bandele.”
“Biyi was a prodigiously talented writer and filmmaker, as well as a loyal friend and beloved father. He was a storyteller to his bones, with an unblinking perspective, singular voice, and wisdom that 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.
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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.”
Biyi was born in Kafanchan, Kaduna State, to parents who were from Abeokuta, Ogun State.
The UK-based Nigerian writer turned director is known for his work in “Fifty”, MTV drama series, “Shuga” season three.
He directed the movie Half of a yellow sun and was co-director of Blood Sisters the first Netflix Nigerian Original series, Blood Sisters. He directed FELA – Father of Afrobeat (2018), a TV special documentary for the BBC; and his self-produced TV-Movie documentary, Africa States of Independence (2010).
His fiction and non-fiction works include The Street, Burma Boy, a novel, a recreation of the story of his father and other veterans of the Second World War, who served in Burma, India, which he was working on to be adapted for Film. His other writing works include The Man Who Came in from the Back of Beyond, The Sympathetic Undertaker, and Yoruba Boy Running, which he recently concluded and submitted for publishing.
While the cause of his death is not yet known, his loss is felt by many at home and abroad.