Jean-Pierre Bekolo Profile:

Name Bekolo
Other Names Jean-Pierre
Date of Birth1966-06-08
Place Yaoundé

Detailed Biography

Bekolo

Jean Pierre Bekolo, the noted African film director, was nominated for a British Film Institute award in 1993, for Quartier Mozart (1992). His style is playful, comic, and sardonic. His film, Le complot d'Aristote (1996), started out as the African entry in the British Film Institute's series of films commemorating the centenary of cinema.

Part meditation on the trials of African filmmaking, part action movie send-up, part parody of Aristotle's rules, part satire on Africa's preoccupation with itself, this film shows Bekolo to be an "increasingly fearless trickster."

The British Film Institute also invited such directors as Bernardo Bertolucci, Stephen Frears, Martin Scorsese, Anne-Marie Mieville & Jean-Luc Godard, and Edgar Reitz. But instead of turning in a respectful documentary, as Martin Scorsese did for the U.S. and Stephan Frears did for Britain, Bekolo rendered a wild hybrid "that is certain to be the most talked about African film of the year 1997."

"Aristotle's Plot" was featured at the Sundance Film Festival in January 1997. Bekolo's films have also appeared at film festivals in England, Ireland, France, India, Israel, Burkina Faso, Canada and throughout the U.S. in New York, Chicago, L.A., Washington, and Philadelphia.

At his young age, has made a name for himself teaching his filmmaking style at Duke University 2003, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill 2001, Virginia Tech 1998.

He most recently made headlines for his 2013 film Le Président.It is a fictitious film, but controversial and it raised instant polemic. Efforts to stop Le Président from screening in Yaoundé drew international attention and the film has effectively been banned in the filmmaker's country (Cameroon).

Even the Institut Français in Yaoundé refused to screen the film. In short, Cameroonian authorities didn't approve of the film's seemingly daring plot, which sees the film's fictional president disappear a few days before elections (the country's real-life president, Paul Biya, has been in power for more than 30 years).