Babak Najafi directs an episode of Banshee

Babak Najafi isn’t an especially well known director. Born in Iran and emigrating to Sweden at the age of 11, he’s largely directed short films and documentaries. However, his feature debut Sebbe was best film at Guldbaggegalan and won him a gold bear at the Berlin Film Festival for best debut film.

So despite the episode itself being something of a departure for the show – a road trip of sorts encompassing life evaluations and musings on the nature of relationships, rather than its usual brutality and sex – it was somewhat surprising to see that Friday’s episode of Banshee, The Truth About Unicorns, was directed by Najafi. Certainly the look of it was something else altogether, a tour de force visually, as you can probably see in this shoot out.

He’s up directing the next episode, Armies of One, too, but here’s hoping to much more TV exposure for Najafi, so he can enliven US TV with new ideas*.

* I should probably point out that Banshee is one of the most interestingly diverse shows on TV anyway, as it stars a New Zealander (Antony Starr), a Dane (Ulrich Thomsen), a Korean-American (Hoon Lee), two African-Americans (Demetrius Grosse, Frankie Faison), a Yugoslavian/Sarajevan-American (Ivana Milicevic), a Brit (Ben Cross) and a Filipino-Chinese-Spanish-German-Scottish-American (Anthony Ruiviar), and is set in a town with significant nearby populations of Native Americans and Amish, as well as Ukrainians (now). Good work guys.


  • Rob Buckley

    I’m Rob Buckley, a journalist who writes for UK media magazines that most people have never heard of although you might have heard me on the podcast Lockdown Land or Radio 5 Live’s Saturday Edition or Afternoon Edition. I’ve edited Dreamwatch, Sprocket and Cambridge Film Festival Daily; been technical editor for TV producers magazine Televisual; reviewed films for the short-lived newspaper Cambridge Insider; written features for the even shorter-lived newspaper Soho Independent; and was regularly sarcastic about television on the blink-and-you-missed-it “web site for urban hedonists” The Tribe. Since going freelance, I've contributed to the likes of Broadcast, Total Content + Media, Action TV, Off The Telly, Action Network, TV Scoop and The Custard TV.

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