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Oscar-winning director Malik Bendjelloul dead at 36

Police report that Searching for Sugar Man director, Malik Bendjelloul, has passed away.

Photo credit: Brian To/

Malik Bendjelloul passed away on Tuesday, May 13, Stockholm police are reporting. The Oscar-winning director was just 36 years old.

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Pia Glenvik told the Associated Press that Bendjelloul died in Stockholm late Tuesday evening, according to the Huffington Post. She did not give specifics about the cause of death, but did say that foul play is not suspected.

Bendjelloul was born in Skane Lan, Sweden, on September 14, 1977, according to his official IMDb profile. As a child in the nineties, he performed as an actor in the Swedish TV series, “Ebba och Didrik,” and later went on to study journalism and media production at the Linnaeus University of Kalmar. He produced several Swedish documentaries and also worked as a reporter for a short time.

The director recently rose to fame after his documentary, Searching for Sugar Man, won the Academy Award for Best Documentary in 2013. The film chronicles the tale of Sixto Rodriguez, a talented folk-rock musician who failed to garner any attention in the U.S., but unknowingly ended up with a huge following in South Africa during apartheid and still remains popular today. Bendjelloul discovered the story of Rodriguez in South America after he had stopped working in the entertainment industry to travel the world.

Earlier this year, British socialite, Peaches Geldof, and American thrash-metal singer, Dave Brockie, were also found mysteriously dead in their respective homes. Geldof died late last month and weeks later, reports revealed that she had fallen victim to a heroin overdose. She was 25 years old. The thrash metal singer was found sitting upright in his chair and no drugs or indication of crime were found at the scene, according to authorities. Brockie was just 50, and his cause of death is still under investigation.

Our condolences go to Bendjelloul’s family and friends.

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