Biyi Bandele, director of Netflix Originals ‘Blood Sisters,’ ‘Ẹlẹ́ṣin Ọba’ dies at 54

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By Abdulafeez Olaitan

Biyi Bandele, the director of the recently released Netflix Original series ‘Blood Sisters,’ and the forthcoming Netflix film ‘Ẹlẹ́ṣin Ọba’ has died at age 54.

In a statement released through his Facebook page, his daughter, Temi Bandele confirmed the sad departure of the veteran filmmaker.

“[…] 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 film-maker, as well as 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 which made a profound impact and inspired many all over the world. His legacy will live on through his work.”

Prior to his death, Biyi Bandele was groundbreaking in the filmmaking industry. He was famously known for directing the movie adaptation of Chimamanda Adichie’s classic novel Half Of A Yellow Sun, which was eventually banned from Nigerian screens because of government thin skin.

He also directed the mini series which has been frequently referenced as the first Nigerian Netflix Original series, “Blood Sisters.”

His recently directed movie “Ẹlẹ́ṣin Ọba,” an adaptation of Wole Ṣóyínká’s Death and the King’s Horseman, is expected to make its Netflix debut later this year, while its screening premiers at the Toronto International Film Festival by September.

The cause of his death is not yet clear.

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