The creative community was deeply saddened yesterday to hear of the passing of Colombian director, scriptwriter and producer, Pepe Sánchez who died in his home town of Bogota at age 82.
His 60-year career began as an announcer on Colombian radio station HJCK before moving into theatre and then in 1964, after studying cinema in Prague, taking a position as assistant director for Miguel Littín’s “The Jackal of Nahueltoro”. Sánchez went on to direct some of Colombian television’s greatest shows, become a well-recognised actor, and to write a number of novels including “Las Juanas” in 1997. In 2000, Sánchez received the India Catalina Award as “Director of the Century”.
In recent years, he found new passion as an activist for audiovisual creators’ rights, partnering with local authors societies DASC and REDES, and international organisations such as Writers & Directors Worldwide and CISAC. Sánchez aimed to modify the Colombian author’s rights law of 1982 by adding a right to remuneration for screenwriters and directors from the public broadcast of their works. This movement soon became known as the “Pepe Sánchez Act” and on 30 August this year, the act successfully passed its second debate in the House of Representatives.
Sánchez was also a strong supporter of The Audiovisual Campaign which aims to introduce this same right to remuneration into the laws of all countries.
He is survived by seven children and two grandchildren who in a public statement yesterday described him as “an impeccable man, a perfect father, a professional who gave his life to the culture of Colombia.”
[Image © DAC]