Jean-Pierre Bekolo is a Cameroonian avant-garde filmmaker and socio-cultural activist whose imaginative work overturns stereotypes of Africa and African cinema. His entertaining films operate on multiple layers, engaging viewers with thrilling stories, biting humour and dramatic aesthetics. After the release of Aristotle’s Plot in 1995 - the first African film to be selected for Sundance - Bekolo was described as an "increasingly fearless trickster".
He studied physics at University of Yaounde 1984-1987 and Television Production (editing) at Institut National de l'Audiovisuel - INA in Paris where he also studied Semiotics under Christian Metz 1988-1989. He was part of the inaugural class of the Clinton School of Public Service (President Clinton school of public service for social change) in Little Rock Arkansas in 2005. His films, from Quartier Mozart to Grandmother’s Grammar and the more recent Les Choses et Les Mots de Mudimbe (‘The Things and Words of Mudimbe’) have won numerous prizes and been shown in festivals across the world.
Bekolo is the General Secretary of the Guild of African Filmmakers, he is also on the board of FEPACI (Federation Panafricaine des cineastes) and is a founding member of the World Cinema Alliance e.V. (along with Francesco Maseli assistant of Visconti) He divides his time between the USA, France, Germany, South Africa and Cameroon, and is the laureate of the 2015 Prince Claus Award.