One of the first directors from Burkina Faso, among the world's poorest nations, to gain international attention. After graduating from the film institute of the University of Ouagadougou, Ouedraogo b...
After graduating from INAFEC, became a government employee in Burkina Faso as an administrator of motion picture production
Enjoyed earliest encounters with film at "the moving cinema" (not meaning theaters where motion pictures were shown, but government-sponsored outdoor "theaters" that literally moved from village to village)
One of the first directors from Burkina Faso, among the world's poorest nations, to gain international attention. After graduating from the film institute of the University of Ouagadougou, Ouedraogo began to make short films under the auspices of the Burkina Faso government. After several of these ("Les Ecuelles" 1983, "Issa le Tisserand" 1985) won international awards, Ouedraogo successfully ventured into feature-length films co-produced with French and/or Swiss support. His "Yam Daabo/The Choice" (1986), about a desert family's migration to more fertile land, and "Yaaba/Grandmother" (1989), exploring the friendship which develops between a young boy and an old woman scorned by their village, won similar acclaim and are distinguished by their concern for the frailty of the rural impoverished and a skillful mixture of reality and folk mythology.
born c. 1985
African Institute of Motion Picture Arts (INAFEC)
Institut des Hautes Etudes Cinematographiques
Ouedraogo is pronounced "way-dra-OH-go".
Ouedraogo, whose first hero in film was Charlie Chaplin, has reflected on the widespread appeal of cinema such as that of "the little tramp": "In Burkina Faso, when the people go to the movies, they let themselves go--laughing, crying, always moving to the film. But because of the poor technical quality of the movie theaters, African films in the past have concentrated only on the message. Now the form--the pictures, the sound--are important, too. If a movie like "Yaaba" is successful, many people will try not only to speak out about political matters. Filmmakers are learning that there are many ideas for film, ideas that are more universal. Perhaps when people see such films they won't say 'African film', they will just say 'film'." (--Quoted in press material for the U.S. release of "Yaaba", September 12, 1989)