A Daughter’s Tribute to Her Father: Souleymane Cissé


by Fatou Cissé


Mali / 2022 / 73mins / Documentary / Bambara, French

An intimate portrayal of the life and career of Souleymane Cissé, one of Africa's most celebrated filmmakers. The film traces the Malian director's trajectory from his formative years in Bamako to the present day, through interviews with Cissé and those who knew him best. It celebrates his groundbreaking films and highlights their enduring relevance.


About the Director

Fatou Cissé

After secondary school in Ouagadougou, Fatou Cissé attended the University of Caen to study psychology. Then she left for Canada to follow a degree in tourism and travel. She returned to Mali in 2003 to open the DELI communication company. After two years, she returned to cinema to help her father, Souleymane Cissé to manage UCECAO (Union of Creators and Entrepreneurs of Cinema and Audiovisual in West Africa). She works within the structure as a Mission Manager. She is also production director of Films Cissé and co-manager.

Seeing the difficulties that her father has been going through since his beginnings until today, she wanted to make a documentary retracing the life of Souleymane, recounting his experience since childhood as well as his works in order to highlight his personality as a director. In 2003, she was appointed as Project Manager in the organization of the Bamako Cinegraphic Meetings and the Nyamina International Festival which aim is to enable directors from the 15 countries of the sub-region to share their difficulties and find some solutions to problems. Due to the security situation in Mali, the activities had to be suspended. Regarding her father’s productions, she was Production Manager in : Min Yé... (Tell me who you are) in 2009 which reflects the contradictions of a Malian bourgeoisie in search of meaning ; in 2013 for the documentary O.Sembène that Souleymane made in tribute to his deceased friend, and O Ka (Our House) which was presented in the official selection at the 68th Cannes Film Festival in 2015. This film relates Souleymane’s fight for the truth that pushes the artist to speak up and get involved. Learn More