Born in Oakland, California, Adisa is part of a new wave of Bay Area storytellers who are both bold and creatively adventurist in their ﬁlmmaking. An award-winning director, producer, and philanthropist, he recently directed his debut feature ﬁlm Skin in the Game – a gritty, unﬂinching dramatic thriller that explores the underground world of human trafﬁcking. Skin in the Game is produced by Kandoo Films, the production company behind the Oscar-nominated and BAFTA award-winning Netﬂix documentary 13th by Ava DuVernay.
Skin in the Game premiered at Urbanworld in 2019 and won the Best Director Award at the 27th Annual Pan African Film and Arts Festival. Released theatrically in the United States, the ﬁlm was embraced as paramount in raising the public awareness of human trafﬁcking by the County of Los Angeles and Fourth District Supervisor Janice Hahn. Adisa was also honored with the Heroes for Angels Award for Outstanding Community Achievement by the Our Children’s Keeper Foundation.
Adisa received his Master of Fine Arts in Film from New York University’s prestigious Tisch School of the Arts. His student narrative Garden of Love placed a spotlight on the traumatic affects of babies born addicted to drugs. Garden of Love won the esteemed NYU Carl Learner Award for Social Signiﬁcance.
While at NYU, Adisa also directed the critically acclaimed Disney short narrative Notes in a Minor Key, staring Harry J. Lennix and Keith David. A jazz story set in 1947, Stephen Holden of the New York Times called the ﬁlm “conﬁdent, assured and crisply accomplished.” As a result Adisa garnered a First Look deal with Disney.
Showtime Network premiered two ﬁlms produced by Adisa – Gift for the Living and Sarang Song. Gift for the Living won the Outfest Audience Award for Outstanding Short Narrative and Sarang Song won the San Francisco Black Film Festival Award for Best Short Film.
Following his success at Showtime, Adisa went on to direct and produce A Day Without Mines. Filmed in the diamond district of Sierra Leone, West Africa, Adisa witnessed children as young as six years old working in the mines which impacted him greatly. He was able to capture this remarkable story in a short documentary which won Best Short Documentary at the Beverly Hills Film, TV & New Media Festival and was showcased on PBS.
Perhaps Adisa’s proudest accomplishment to date is his philanthropic endeavors in Sierra Leone where he has provided hundreds of children with educational scholarships and an opportunity for a better life. Adisa received the Humanitarian Leadership Award for his efforts.
Recently Adisa traveled to South Africa where he was invited to do a workshop at the KwaZulu Natal African Film Festival in Durban for the next generation of young aspiring ﬁlmmakers.