Biyi Bandele

All Disciplines Award, New York University - Film Production

I am a novelist, playwright, and filmmaker. I wrote and directed the films Half of a Yellow Sun (2013) starring Thandie Newton, Chiwetel Ejiofor, John Boyega, and Anika Noni Rose, and Fifty (2015). My TV work includes Not Even God is Wise Enough, directed by Danny Boyle (1994) and two seasons of the MTV series Shuga (2013 & 2015). My plays include Rain, Death Catches the Hunter, Marching for Fausa, and Resurrections. Amongst his theatre adaptations are Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart (1997), Aphra Behn’s Oroonoko (1999) and Federico Garcia Lorca’s Senora Carrar’s Rifles (2007). I have written several books, from my first novel The Man Who Came in from The Back of Beyond (Heinemann, 1991), to Burma Boy (Jonathan Cape, 2007), which has been translated into French, Italian, Portuguese, Dutch, Hebrew, Polish and Swedish. I am an artist by-fellow at Churchill College at the University of Cambridge. I am currently working on a feature documentary on the human rights activist and creator of Afrobeat, Fela Kuti.

I look forward to living in New York and inside the vibrant community of great filmmakers there. I also look forward to taking the occasional long distance trip across the US by Amtrak.