Senegalese filmmaker Ousmane Sembene has died. He was 84.
Sembene was regarded as one of the pioneers of African cinema, and has won prizes for his work at the Cannes Film Festival, for Moolaade in 2004, and the Venice Film Festival for The Camp of Thiaroye in 1988.
He was also a prolific author and a co-founder of the Panafrican festival of film and television.
Former Senegalese president Abdlu Diouf credited Sembene as one of Africa's "greatest filmmakers" and a "fervent defender of liberty and social justice".
A tribute from the Malian Culture Minister Cheick Oumar Sissoko, himself a filmmaker and a friend of Sembene, added, "African cinema has lost one of its lighthouses."
Sembene's funeral is due to take place later today (11Jun07).
81-year-old writer-director-author Ousmane Sembene has been a provocative force for social change in his native Africa for over 50 years. Though most of his films do not get distributed on U.S. soil, they are a solid reminder of human rights issues that still need to be addressed. With his latest, Moolaadé, he gracefully illustrates the organizing of mothers in a small rural community to keep their daughters from being "purified".
Continue reading: Moolaadé Review
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