Abderrahmane Sissako

Mauritania, 1961

After he grew up in Mauritania and Mali, film director and producer Aderrahmane Sissako left for Moscow to pursue his cinematographic studies at its leading film school. Here, he produced his first film Octobre (1993), which took Cannes by storm and initiated his career as Africa’s most influential filmmaker. In his work, Sissako confronts an international audience with their lack of interest in the ‘forgotten continent’. He conjures up visions of the displacement of its people and the large-scale violation of human rights in Africa. His critically acclaimed film Timbuktu (2014), picturing an African town and its Muslim inhabitants taken hostage and being terrorized by fundamentalists, was awarded seven Césars and was nominated for both the Palme d’Or and the Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film. Sissako recently moved back to Mauritania, after having lived in France for years.

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