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Jean-Pierre Bekolo is one of the major film directors of Black Africa. He is known for a series of feature films, among them Quatier Mozart (1992), Le Complot d´Aristotle (1996) und Les Saignantes (2005). Within each film, Bekolo develops a new mix of the genres of comedy, social realism, science fiction and the supernatural. “Quatier Mozart” uses the storytelling device of the body swap to critique patriarchal structures in Kamerum´s society. With “Les Saignantes”, Bekolo created an erotic thriller set in the future to deal with political corruption in Postcolonial Africa.

At Berlinale 2015, he shows his first documentary: Les Choses et les Mots de Mudimbe - The Things and the Words of Mudimbe, a 4-hour-long portrait of Valentin-Yves Mudimbe. Being an antropologist, a literary scientist and a writer of novels, his major work is “The Invention of Africa” (1988). Mubimbe basic idea is that the notion of Africa is a product of colonialism and its thinking about African societies. I asked Bekolo how the idea to film a documentary about Mudimbe came up. Initially my plan was to talk about the image of the intellectual, the scholar, which we see rarely in film in general, which is very special and interesting in Mudimbes case. But discussing Mudimbes finding that the concept of Africa is an invention of the colonial discourse we soon ventured into discussing the current political situation. Bekolo develops his idea of the necessity of a second encounter between the Africa and the West in order to move beyond corrupt governments and development aid that mainly supports the Western economies.