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Directors

Sharing our filmmakers’ passion, we also wanted to share their thoughts and influences, to see into their world and better understand their work. With this notebook, explore their favorite places with them and learn more about their influences.

Directors
Reetta Aalto
Levan Akin
Tine Alavi
Lionel Baier
Marianne Blicher
Jean-Armand Bougrelle
Jean-Stéphane Bron
Ilker Çatak
Alice Diop
Camille Ducellier
Zeina Durra
Annie Ernaux
David Ernaux-Briot
Gábor Fabricius
Cristina Groșan
Alli Haapasalo
Hannaleena Hauru
Ulla Heikkilä
Heather Kessinger
Juho Kuosmanen
Yenni Lee
Fanny Liatard
Patricia Mazuy
Ursula Meier
Frédéric Mermoud
Maryam Moghaddam
Mikko Myllylahti
Inari Niemi
Anna Paavilainen
Michaela Pavlatova
Shirel Peleg
Aude Pépin
Sofía Quirós Ubeda
Kirsikka Saari
Behtash Sanaeeha
Lovisa Sirén
Aino Suni
Andrei Tănase
Miia Tervo
Samuel Theis
Elli Toivoniemi
Jenni Toivoniemi
Jasmine Trinca
Jérémy Trouilh
C.B.Yi
Countries
Argentina
Austria
Costa Rica
Czech Republic
Denmark
Egypt
England
Finland
France
Georgia
Germany
Hungary
Iran
Israel
Italy
Japan
Romania
Slovakia
Sweden
Switzerland
USA

Reetta Aalto

Reetta Aalto is a film director and screenwriter of both fiction and documentary films. Her works as a screenwriter and director include the documentary film Grey Violet – Odd One Out (2017), which premiered at the Hot Docs Film Festival, and the award-winning internet-hit animation Pussy for Beginners (2015). Her most recent directorial work is the feature comedy Laughing Matters (2020) written by Anna Ruohonen. Aalto is also a published author, her critically acclaimed debut novel Vadim came out in summer 2020.

Force Of Habit (2020)
Countries

Finland

Films influences :

Little Snow Animal by Miia Tervo

Golden Age by Maija Blåfield

Two Bodies On A Beach by Anna Paavilainen

Elsa by Marja Pensala

No Time For Toes by Kari Pieskä

Levan Akin

Levan Akin is a Swedish born filmmaker and his work often plays on class and gender. He most recently directed THE CIRCLE (2015 world premiere at the Berlin film festival) based on the bestselling YA book. He has also directed the feature film CERTAIN PEOPLE which received its international premiere at the 2012 Tribeca Film Festival to rave reviews. He has also directed several TV- series for SVT Drama most notably REAL HUMANS. Currently Levan Akin is writing and directing a new TV-series for SVT titled DOUGH set to premiere in the spring of 2021.

And Then We Danced (2019) - The Circle (2015) - Certain People (2012)
Countries

Sweden

Georgia

Films influences :

A Streetcar Named Desire by Elia Kazan

Dolores Claiborne by Taylor Hackford

Yol by Yilmaz Guney

Aliens by James Cameron

The Color of Pomegranates by Sergei Paradjanov

Tine Alavi

Tine Alavi ​is a director and screenwriter based in Stockholm, Sweden. She has written and directed multiple documentaries and short films including the short film ​Aliki ​(2015).​ ​Alavi has a degree in directing and production from Vancouver Film School and a bachelor in film studies from Gothenburg University, from where​ she​ continued to the masters program at Stockholm University. She is currently working on a short film together with Fembot Production written and directed by her.

Force Of Habit (2020)
Films influences :

A Separation by Asghar Farhadi

Offside by Jafar Panahi

Caramel by Nadine Labaki

Eat, Sleep And Die by Gabriela Pichler

The Celebration by Thomas Vinterberg

Lionel Baier

Born in Lausanne in 1975 in a Swiss family of Polish origins, Lionel Baier programs et co-manages the Rex Cinema of Aubonne since 1992, before studing humanities at the University of Lausanne (1995-1999). Following the documentary THE PASTOR's and THE PARADE (OUR HISTORY), he directs his first feature film in 2004, STUPID BOY. His next films are Stealth– first episode of a tetralogy that continues with LONGWAVE, then ANOTHER MANOR VANITY in a filmography of fictions and documentaries in several formats. Director of the Film department at the ECAL (Art school of Lausanne) since 2002, he co-founds Bande à part Films in 2009 and is the vice-president the Swiss Cinemathèque’s board of administration. Lionel also produced the four films of SHOCK WAVES, and THE VENERABLE W. (directed by Barbet Schroeder), presented in Cannes in 2017.

Shock Waves - First Name : Mathieu (2018) - Vanity (2015) - Longwave (2013) - Bon Vent Claude Goretta (2011) - Toulouse (2011) - Low Cost (Claude Jutra) (2010) - Un Autre Homme (2008) - Comme Des Voleurs (2006) - Stupid Boy (2004) - The Parade (Our History) (2002) - The Pastor (2000)
Countries

Switzerland

Marianne Blicher

Marianne Blicher is a Danish filmmaker based in Copenhagen, but with the world as her playground and inspiration. Marianne is a graduate from the Danish film school Super16, she holds a Bachelor in media and communication from New College Durham, UK and wrote her master’s thesis on the fictionalized reality of documentary film in communication at RUC, DK. Marianne began her career as a producer for theatre and film. In parallel, she developed her passion as a director.

2017 - Odd Job Man (short) - 2012 - Belinda Beautiful (short) - 2009 - Mallorca (short)
Countries

Denmark

Film Influences:

Mommy by Xavier Dolan

Lost in Translation by Sofia Coppola

Fish Tank by Andrea Arnold

We Need to Talk about Kevin by Lynne Ramsay

The Florida Project by Sean Baker

Dog Days by Ulrich Seidl

Welcome to the Dollhouse by Todd Solondz

The Celebration by Thomas Vitenberg

Fargo by Ethan Coen & Joel Coen

Joker by Todd Phillips

Jean-Armand Bougrelle

Jean-Armand Bougrelle is a screenwriter and director based in Tokyo. He has written shorts and feature films screened in movie festivals around the world such as Cannes and Venice. BOUND is his debut feature documentary.

Bound (2021)
Countries

Japan

Films influences :

Dangerous Encounters of the First Kind by Tsui Hark

Near Dark by Kathryn Bigelow

Red Angel by Yasuzō Masumura

Sunrise by F.W. Murnau

To Live And Die in L.A. by William Friedkin

Jean-Stéphane Bron

Born in Lausanne in 1969, Jean-Stéphane Bron is a documentarian. His movies received several distinctions in Europe and in the US, like KNOWN TO OUR DEPARTMENTS (1997), about a scandal of files compiled by Swiss Federal Police. CORN IN PARLIAMENT (2003), one of the biggest success of Swiss film, or THE BLOCHER EXPERIENCE, portrait of the right-wing populist leader Christophe Blocher, which stirred up controversy. WITH CLEVELAND VERSUS WALL STREET (2010), about the subprimes crisis, which is presented in Cannes and nominated for a Cesar, he gains international recognition and receives for the second time the Quartz of Best documentary at the Swiss Film Award. His last movie, THE PARIS OPERA (2017), about Paris Opera’s backstage, is widely distributed around the world.

Shock Waves : The Valley (2018) - The Paris Opera (2017) - The Blocher Experience (2013) - Cleveland Versus Wall Street (2010) - My Brother Is Getting Married (2006) - Corn in Parliament (2003) - The Way I Look at You (1999) - Known to Our Departments (1997)
Countries

Switzerland

Ilker Çatak

Ilker Çatak was born in Berlin in 1984. Later he lived in Istanbul and studied film and television directing in Berlin and Hamburg. Çatak’s second feature film, I AM I WAS I WILL BE won Best German Film Award in 2020.

Stambul Garden (2020)
Countries

Germany

Films Influences :

Toni Erdmann by Maren Ade

Elephant by Gus Van Sant

Uzak by Nuri Bilge Ceylan

4 months, 3 weeks and 2 days by Christian Mungiu

Taste of Cherry by Abbas Kiarostami

Alice Diop

Born and raised in Paris suburb, Alice Diop questions contemporary French society and its cultural diversity. Her film TOWARDS TENDERNESS won the best short film award at the French César Awards in 2017.

We (2021) - On Call (2016) - Towards Tenderness (2016) - Danton Death (2011)
Countries

France

Films influences :

South by Chantal Akerman

35 Shots of Rum by Claire Denis

Love Exists by Maurice Pialat

Public Housing by Frederick Wiseman

The Gospel According to St. Matthew by Pier Paolo Pasolini

Camille Ducellier

Writer, director and artist Camille Ducellier works on a hybrid art between art and cinema. Feminist queer, she knows very well the gender issues. She studied them through her friends but also on an academic level. The form of her artwork can vary – documentary, interactive art, sound installation – but the spell remains the same : dreaming the dark, unveiling the body, binding the spiritual and the political.

Gender Derby (2018)
Countries

France

Zeina Durra

Zeina Durra received her BA in Oriental Studies from Oxford University and MFA from NYU's Tisch School of the Arts Graduate Film Programme. Her directorial debut, The Imperialists Are Still Alive! premiered in US Dramatic Competition at Sundance 2010. British born of Bosnian-Palestinian-Jordanian-Lebanese descent, Zeina spent over a decade living in New York, and after making her first film, she took some time off to have a family. She is now back having just shot her next feature, Luxor, staring Andrea Riseborough which will premiere in World Dramatic Competition at Sundance 2020. Zeina is now based out of London, and is currently developing various film projects.

Luxor (2020) - The Imperialists Are Still Alive! (2010)
Countries

England

Egypt

Films influences :

The Passenger by Michelangelo Antonioni

Don’t Look Now by Nicholas Rogue

Woman on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown by Pedro Almodóvar

The Rules of The Game by Jean Renoir

Cria Cuervos by Carlos Saura

Annie Ernaux

The author of some twenty works of fiction and memoir, Annie Ernaux is considered by many to be France’s most important literary voice. She won the Prix Renaudot for A Man’s Place and the Marguerite Yourcenar Prize for her body of work. More recently she received the International Strega Prize, the Prix Formentor, the French-American Translation Prize, and the Warwick Prize for Women in Translation for The Years, which was also shortlisted for the Man Booker International Prize. Her other works include Exteriors, A Girl’s Story, A Woman’s Story, The Possession, Simple Passion, Happening, I Remain in Darkness, Shame, A Frozen Woman, and A Man’s Place. Recently, two of her books were adapted into award-winning films: Simple Passion by Danielle Abrid (Cannes Label 2020) ; The Happening by Audrey Diwan (Venice Golden Lion 2021).

The Super 8 Years (2022)
Countries

France

David Ernaux-Briot

David Ernaux-Briot, son of Annie and Philippe Ernaux, was born in 1968. He grew up in Annecy and later on Cergy-Pontoise. After studying science, he decided to focus on scientific journalism and contributed to specialized TV programs such as E=M6 and C’est pas Sorcier. He wrote and directed the mini-series Théâtre des Machines, Corpus, Art et Sport for the platforms Universcience and CANOPE. The Super 8 Years is his first feature-length documentary.

The Super 8 Years (2022)

Gábor Fabricius

Director, writer. MA graduate from Central Saint-Martins College London. He writes and directs shorts since 2007, he has published two novels. His topics mainly are socio-political, psychological. His short films were screened over hundreds of film festivals around the world: Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), Zürich, Luxembourg, Mumbai, Boston, Regensburg, London, Vienna, Tallin, Warsaw, Krakow, Prague and many more, have won several prizes.

2016 – Dialogue (short) - 2014 – Skinner (short) - 2012 – Bianka (short) - 2010 – Grown Ups (short)
Countries

Hungary

Cristina Groșan

Cristina Groșan is a Hungarian-Romanian filmmaker and visual artist. Since graduating from university, she has directed 6 short films, which toured the worldwide short film circuit and her debut feature THINGS WORTH WEEPING for premiered at Sarajevo Film Festival 2021

Things worth keeping for (2021) - Along came a prince (2020) - Work in progress (2018) - Night Painting (2016) - Holiday at the seaside (2013) - Carry me away (2013)
Countries

Romania

Hungary

Film Influences

Notturno by Gianfranco Rosi

Woman Captured by Bernadett Tuza-Ritter

Toni Erdmann by Maren Ade

Border by Ali Abbasi

Wendy & Lucy by Kelly Reichardt

Alli Haapasalo

Director and writer ​Alli Haapasalo​ graduated from Aalto University’s School of Motion Picture, Television and Production Design with a 30-minute comedy ​The Girl Who Had No Problems (2003),​ which traveled well internationally. Wanting to continue studying film abroad in a vibrant film industry, Haapasalo moved to New York and began in the graduate program of New York University’s film school at Tisch School of the Arts. During ten years in New York, she wrote and directed many short films and developed several features. It was Haapasalo’s 60-minute thesis film ​On Thin Ice (2009)​, that got notice at festivals in the United States as well as Europe. This story of a lonely mercenary looking for a friend won several awards, and was nominated for Prix Europa in 2012. Haapasalo returned to Finland to make her feature debut, ​Love and Fury (2016),​ which was released in Finland in 2016 to rave reviews. Shortly after, her first feature length documentary ​P.O.Box 347 (2017)​ came out and garnered a large number of viewers on the Finnish National Broadcasting Company. In 2019 Haapasalo released ​television show ​Shadow Lines​, a cold war era political drama she co-directed with ​A.J. Annila​. ​Alli Haapasalo holds a Master of Fine Arts from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts (2009), as well as a Bachelor of Arts from Aalto University’s School of Motion Picture, Television and Production Design (2003).

Force Of Habit (2020)
Countries

Finland

Films influences :

A Separation by Asghar Farhadi

Amour by Michael Haneke

Spotlight by Thomas McCarthy

Call Me By Your Name by Luca Guadagnino

BPM (Beat Per Minute) by Robin Campillo

Hannaleena Hauru

Hannaleena Hauru, is a Finnish screenwriter and director. Her debut feature THICK LASHES OF LAURI MÄNTYVAARA (2016) was developed in Torino Film Lab and Cannes Cinéfondation Residency. Her earlier short films have premiered in Cannes Critics’ Week and Berlinale Generation. Building dramaturgy and characters as an ensemble together with the crew and crossing roles of actors also being behind the camera is one of her trademarks.

Fucking with Nobody (2021) - Thick Lashes of Lauri Mäntyvaara (2016)
Countries

Finland

Films influences :

Pierrot le Fou by Jean-Luc Godard

Borat by Sacha Baron Cohen

At Land by Maya Deren

Wuthering Heights by Andrea Arnold

Memorias del subdesarrollo by Tomás Gutiérrez Alea

Ulla Heikkilä

Ulla Heikkilä ​is a Helsinki-based film director and screenwriter whose first feature film ​Eden will premiere in 2020. Heikkilä ​Heikkilä studied film directing in Aalto University in Helsinki, where she graduated with a M.F.A​. ​Heikkilä's short films​ Golgotha​ (2016) and​ #Barewithme (2017) have screened at the Aspen, Palm Springs, Angers and Tampere film festivals, among many others.​ Heikkilä has also directed and written for television. In addition to her work in film and tv, Heikkilä has also written and directed plays and music videos. Heikkilä has acted as the vice-chairman of the Association of Finnish Film Directors SELO.

Force Of Habit (2020)
Countries

Finland

Films influences :

Miami by Zaida Bergroth

Dogs Don’t Wear Pants by Jukka-Pekka Valkeapää

Gods of Molenbeek by Reetta Huhtanen

Flame Top by Pirjo Honkasalo and Pekka Lehto

Inspector Palmu’s Error by Matti Kassila

Heather Kessinger

Heather Kessinger began her artistic career as a still photographer, but later adopted filmmaking as an extension of her passion for telling visual stories. In 2010 she directed a short documentary, IN THE SHADOW OF BUDDHA, which takes us beyond the idealized world of Tibetan Buddhism and into the unexpectedly controversial lives of Tibetan nuns. She won numerous awards, including a 2011 Golden Palm Award for Documentary Film and the 2011 International Religion Today “Best Documentary” and “Women’s Issues” awards. THE MOST FEARLESS is her directorial debut for a feature documentary.

The Most Fearless (2020)
Countries

USA

Films influences :

Breaking the Waves by Lars Von Trier

Burden of Dreams/Les Blank

When We Were Kings by Leon Gast

Paris, Texas by Wim Wenders

L’année Dernière à Marienbad by Alain Resnais

Juho Kuosmanen

Juho Kuosmanen (b. 1979) is Helsinki based filmmaker. He graduated from ELO Heslinki Film School of Aalto University in 2014. His first two films have won a prize in Cannes Film Festival. THE PAINTED SELLERS (2010) won the 1st prize in Cannes Cinefondation and The Happiest Day in the Life of Olli Mäki (2016) won The Prix un Certain Regard. Besides making award-winning films, he has directed avant-garde opera and theater. He also makes silent short films with live music and foleys. He is the co-founder and artistic director of a small film festival in his birth town Kokkola.

Compartment n°6 (2021) - The Happiest Day in the Life of Olli Mäki (2016) - The Painting Sellers (2010)
Countries

Finland

Yenni Lee

Yenni Lee has an MFA from Valand Academy in Gothenburg, Sweden. Her short films have been nominated and won several prizes at festivals such as: The Norwegian Short Film Festival, Nordic Panorama, Black Nights Film Festival, Gøteborg International Film-festival, Locarno Festival, SXSW and Outfest. With her audiovisual identity micro-poetic psychosis for cinematic trauma- she explores issues such as power, sexuality and loneliness. She loves ice cream, trees and Berghain.

Water Bears (2017) - Explosions in the heart (2016)
Countries

Denmark

Fanny Liatard

Fanny Liatard and Jérémy Trouilh write and direct together. Their four short films, all rooted in a poetic urban and social reality, have won awards at many international festivals (Palm Springs, Clermont-Ferrand, Sundance Channel Award…). GAGARINE is their first feature.

Gagarine (2020)
Countries

France

Films influences :

Paris, Texas by Wim Wenders

Mauvais Sang by Leos Carax

Happy As Lazzaro by Alba Rohrwacher

Nobody Knows by Hirokazu Kore-eda

We All Loved Each Other So Much by Ettore Scola

Patricia Mazuy

Born in 1960, PATRICIA MAZUY was a good student who went to business school to make her baker father happy. There, she ran the movie club and discovered the Doors, who were already dead. She quit to go to LA, where she used her babysitting money to make a short. Thanks to Sabine Mamou, who hired her for A Room in Town, she finally learned. After editing Vagabond and out of work, she began working on her first feature film, Thick Skinned.

Peaux de vaches (1989) - Saint-Cyr (2000) - Sport de filles (2011) - Paul Sanchez is back ! (2017) - Saturn Bowling (2022)
Countries

France

Film influences:

Peasants by Friedrich Ermler

La Chevauchée des Bannis by André de Toth

Habemus Papam by Nanni Moretti

A Difficult Life by Dino Risi

Man’s Favourite Sport? by Howard Hawks

Lola by Rainer Fassbinder

Visages de Femmes by Désiré Ecaré

Ursula Meier

Swiss and French, Ursula Meier studied filmmaking in Belgium. Her short films’ and documentaries’ successes allowed her to get worldwide recognition. She was chosen to be part of Arte’s collection of TV movies MASCULIN/FEMININ and directed in 2002 STRONG SHOULDERS which was met with great acclaim. In 2008, her movie HOME has been premiered at the Cannes Film Festival Critics' Week and received several awards and distinctions, including three Césars’ nominations. SISTER received a Silver Bear-Special Award at the 2012 Berlin International Film Festival, was nominated for the Independant Spirit Awards and Kacey Mottet Klein for Best Male Newcomer’s César. This film, as HOME, was rewarded of three Quartz at the Swiss Film Awards and represented Switzerland for the Oscar race. In 2014, she takes part of the omnibus film BRIDGES OF SARAJEVO presented in Official Selection at the Cannes Film Festival.

Shock Waves : Diary Of My Mind (2018) - Bridges of Sarajevo (2014) - Sister (2012) - Home (2008) - About Pinget (2004) - To the Lost Body (1994)
Countries

Switzerland

Frédéric Mermoud

Born in 1969 in Sion, Frédéric Mermoud directed noted short films like THE STAIRCASE, awarded Best short film at the Swiss Film Award, and RACHEL nominated for a Cesar. In 2009, his first feature film, THE COMPLICE, is presented in Locarno Film Festival and receives Best Script at the Swiss Film Award. In 2012, he directs four episodes (5-8) of Canal+ series THE RETURNED, awarded of an International Emmy Award. He gets back to swiss cinema by directing MOKA (2016) with Emmanuelle Devos and Nathalie Baye, which has a big critical an commercial success. He focuses then on thriller and directs six episodes of the Canal+ SPIRAL series. He also directed the writing and production of around 40 ECAL (Art school of Lausanne) students.

Shock Waves - Sirius (2018) - Moka (2016) - The Complice (2009)
Countries

Switzerland

Maryam Moghaddam

Maryam Moghaddam is an actress, screenwriter and director. She graduated from the Performing Arts School of Gothenburg, Sweden. She starred in a number of Iranian films, among which Jafar Panahi and Kambuzia Partovi’s Closed Curtain, which premiered at the 63rd Berlinale and won the Silver Bear.

Ballad of a White Cow (2021)
Countries

Iran

Films influences :

Stranger than Paradise by Jim Jarmusch

Roy Andersson’s trilogy

Still Life by Sohrab Shahid-Saless

Celebration by Thomas Vinterberg

Drive by Nicolas Winding Refn

Mikko Myllylahti

Mikko Myllylahti was born and raised in Northern Finland, in a small town called Tornio. He has a background in poetry yet graduated as a MA in Screenwriting and Fiction Directing from ELO Helsinki Film School. He has written four collections of poetry that have been published in Finland and have won prizes and gained critical acclaim. His short films include THE TIGER (Cannes Critics’ Week 2018) and LOVE IN VAIN (Locarno 2009). His first feature script was Juho Kuosmanen’s debut THE HAPPIEST DAY IN THE LIFE OF OLLI MÄKI, which won the Prix un Certain Regard in Cannes 2016. His feature film directorial debut THE WOODCUTTER STORY has been selected to L’Atelier Cannes 2019 and labs such as Next Step 2018 (Next Step Award 2018), Torino FeatureLab 2018 (TFL Production Award 2018), Toronto Filmmaker Lab 2018, Jerusalem Film Lab 2016 and Berlinale Script Station 2015

The Woodcutter Story (2022) - The Tiger (2018) - Handbag (2012) - Love in Vain (2009)
Countries

Finland

Inari Niemi

Inari Niemi​ is a film director and screenwriter. Her most well-known feature films are Summertime​ (2014) and ​Wonderland​ (2017). She also directed several short films and a feature length documentary ​Robin - The Movie​ (2012). Her work aims to give a voice to young women. She studied in Helsinki Metropolia University of Applied Science, graduating in 2010 and holds a BA in film directing.

Force Of Habit (2020)
Countries

Finland

Films influences :

Spring Breakers by Harmony Korine

The Graduate by Mike Nichols

Lost In Translation by Sofia Coppola

Rust And Bone by Jacques Audiard

The Squid And The Whale by Noah Baumbach

Anna Paavilainen

Anna Paavilainen​ is a Finnish film director, screenwriter and actor. She graduated in 2006 from the Helsinki Theatre Academy and acted in the Finnish National Theatre from 2004 to 2012. While studying directing and screenwriting in Stockholm, Sweden, Paavilainen wrote the monologue ​Play Rape​ about the representations and normalisation of rape scenes on the theatre stage. ​Play Rape​ had its premiere in 2014 at the Pop Up Art House in Helsinki. Paavilainen has performed the highly acclaimed monologue in Finnish, Swedish and English. In 2016, Paavilainen co-directed the play ​Sinuus​ with ​Marja Salo​, which dealt with subjects such as appearance pressure and the merciful gaze. Short film ​Two Bodies on a Beach​ (co-written with ​Laura Birn​, 2019), received the International Competition’s Special Mention at Tampere Film Festival in 2019. Besides her work on and for the theater stage, Paavilainen has also acted in many Finnish films and television shows.

Force Of Habit (2020)
Countries

Finland

Films influences :

The Collector by  Auli Mantila

Void by Aleksi Salmenperä

Fire-Eater by Pirjo Honkasalo

The Match Factory Girl by Aki Kaurismäki

Gods of Molenbeek by Reetta Huhtanen

Michaela Pavlatova

Michaela Pavlátová is an animation director from the Czech Republic. Her films have received numerous awards at international film festivals, including an Oscar nomination for WORDS, WORDS, WORDS (Reci, reci, reci). FILM REPETE has also won a series of awards including the Grand Prix at the International Animation Festival Hiroshima and Golden Bear in Berlin. Her last film TRAM premiered in the Director's Fortnight in Cannes and won Annecy Cristal in 2012. Since 2016 she is the head of the Animation Department at FAMU, Academy of Performing Arts in Prague.

My Sunny Maad (2021) - Night Owls (2008) - Faithless Games (2003) - Prague Stories (1999)
Countries

Czech Republic

Slovakia

France

Shirel Peleg

Shirel Peleg was born in 1985 in Venezuela and raised in Israel. She was graduated in 2010 with a BFA in film and television from the Sapir College and majored in production and directing. After her graduation, she worked as a newsdesk producer at the Israeli news company Channel 2 and for the Israeli newspaper Haaretz. In 2012, Shirel immigrated with her partner to Germany where she learned the language in no time to enroll at the screenwriting program at the renowned Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg. Her latest directing work WE’RE BACK AGAIN has been selected for German Film’s talent showcase and THE NEXT GENERATION SHORT TIGER was presented during the 2018 Cannes Film Festival.

Kiss Me Before It Blows Up (2019)
Countries

Israel

Germany

Films influences :

It Happened One night by Frank Capra

To Be or Not To Be by Ernst Lubitsch

The Apartment by Billy Wilder

Angst Essen Seele Auf by Rainer Werner Fassbinder

Fried Green Tomatoes by Jon Avnet

Aude Pépin

Following a 15 years career as a journalist and an actress, Aude Pépin has worked with directors such as Mia Hansen-Løve and Maïwenn. SHEROES is her debut feature.

Sheroes (2021)
Countries

France

Films influences :

Under the Skin by Jonathan Glazer

So Help Me God by Jean Libon and Yves Hinan

The Rider by Chloé Zhao

The Other Side by Roberto Minervini

Mid90s by Jonah Hill

Sofía Quirós Ubeda

Sofía was born in 1989 and studied Sound and Image Design at the University of Buenos Aires. Since her first short films, Sofía has focused on working with non-actors and actresses, creating films that explore their characters intimate worlds with a poetic vision that highlights atmosphere and emotion. In 2016, her short film SELVA premiered at La Semaine de la Critique of the Cannes Film Festival 2017. Since then, it went to screen in more than 40 cities around the world gathering awards like the TV5 Prize in Biarritz and the ‘Women in Film and TV Award’ given by the Guanajuato IFF. Her first feature film CENIZA NEGRA (LAND OF ASHES) was filmed in the Costa Rican and explores topics such as mourning and the end of childhood. Its premiere will be held at the 58th Semaine de la Critique in 2019.

Land Of Ashes (2019) - Selva (2017)
Countries

Costa Rica

Argentina

Films influences :

Amour by Michael Haneke

Medea by Alexandra Latishev

El Sonido De Las Cosas by Ariel Escalante

Lazzaro Felice by Alice Rohrwacher

Sans Soleil by Chris Marker

El Silencio Es Un Cuerpo Que Cae by Agustina Comedi

Cavalo Dinheiro by Pedro Costa

La ciénaga by Lucrecia Martel

Jauja by Lisandro Alonso

Summer 1993 by Carla Simón

Kirsikka Saari

Kirsikka Saari​ is a screenwriter and director based in Helsinki, Finland. Her most celebrated works as a screenwriter include the Academy Award nominated short film ​Do I Have to Take Care of Everything?​ (2012) and the feature film ​Stupid Young Heart​ (2018), that had its world premiere in Toronto International Film Festival and won the Crystal Bear in the Generation 14plus category in the Berlinale Film Festival the following year.​ ​Her latest work as a director includes the short fictions ​Super Comfort ​(2018) and ​After the Reunion (​2016), that was chosen for the Future Frames at the Karlovy Vary IFF and Palm Springs Shortfest in 2017 and received a Jury's Special Mention at the Filmschoolfest Münich. She has written the feature films​ Korso ​(2014) and children’s film ​Sihja - Fly With Me​ (2020) in collaboration with​ Jenni Toivoniemi​. Saari has also written for television, theatre and published a novel.

Force Of Habit (2020)
Countries

Finland

Films influences :

American Honey by Andrea Arnold

Secrets and Lies by Mike Leigh

A Prophet by Jacques Audiard

Involuntary by Ruben Östlund

L’Enfant by Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne

Behtash Sanaeeha

Behtash Sanaeeha’s first feature, RISK OF ACID RAIN (2015), deals with the struggles of the Iranian middle class and was screened numerous international festivals.

Ballad of a White Cow (2021) - Risk of Acid Rain (2015)
Countries

Iran

Films influences :

Taste of Cherry by Abbas Kiarostami

3 Monkeys by Nuri Bilge Ceylan

Alice in the Cities by Wim Wenders

The Mirror by Andrei Tarkovsky

You, the Living by Roy Andersson

The Turin Horse by Béla Tarr and Ágnes Hranitzky

Lovisa Sirén

Lovisa Sirén is a scriptwriter, director and editor based in Stockholm. She has written and directed several shorts. Her films have been screened at, among others, Locarno FF and Sundance, and have won prestigious prizes. Two of her films has been nominated to the Guldbagge.

Countries

Sweden

Film Influences:

The Graduate by Mike Nichols

Short Cuts by Robert Altman

Woman Under the Influence by John Cassavetes

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind by Michel Gondry

The Kingdom (mini series) by Lars von Trier

Aino Suni

Aino Suni ​is a film director and screenwriter based in Helsinki, who directs both fictional and documentary films. Suni has obtained a master’s degree in screenwriting from the University of Salford, UK in 2014. Suni’s short films ​Turnaround​ (2015) and​ Wolf Carver (​2012) have been chosen for several international film festivals, including Sarajevo Film Festival and Clermont-Ferrand International Short Film Festival. Suni’s feature-length documentary ​Never Again ​(2018) premiered at the Helsinki International Film Festival in sold out screenings and the film was chosen for the national competition at the Tampere Film Festival. Besides film, Suni also works in the fields of music videos and photography. Suni bases her work on values like respecting and listening to others. In her spare time, she enjoys petting cats and going nuts for dancing.

Force Of Habit (2020)
Countries

Finland

Films influences :

The Night by Michelangelo Antonioni

The Lovers on the Bridge by Leos Carax

Virgin Suicides by Sofia Coppola

Holiday by Isabella Eklöf

Enter the Void by Gaspar Noé

Andrei Tănase

After graduating from the National University of Theatre and Film, Bucharest (UNATC), Andrei Tănase worked as a translator, tour guide, freelance writer-director for a couple of television shows, participated in Sarajevo's 2010 Talent Campus and made a few critically acclaimed fiction shorts. The most recent one, First night, premiered in Venice, 2016 and received several awards in festivals around the world. Andrei is now preparing his debut feature.

First Night (2016) - Summer Break (2015) - Claudiu & the Fish (2013)
Countries

Romania

Miia Tervo

The awarded director​ Miia Tervo​ grew up in Lapland, Finland. Her short films ​The Seal (2006), ​The Little Snow Animal (​2009),​ ​Santra and the Talking Trees (​2013), ​Clumsy Little Acts of Tenderness​ (201​5) circulated around the world’s festivals su​ch as Idfa and ​The Little Snow Animal​ got an EFA nomination among other prices. Tervo‘s debut fiction feature Aurora (​2019) was a critical success. It premiered as an opening film of Gothenburg Film Festival and has been selected to SXSW South by Southwest and is currently touring festivals. In addition to Finland, ​Aurora (2019) ​ is having its theatrical release for example in Estonia and in Australia and is distributed by Level K.

Force Of Habit (2020)
Countries

Finland

Films influences :

Orlando by Sally Potter

Tony Erdmann by Maren Ade

Moonlight by Barry Jenkins

Mirror by Andrei Tarkovsky

Lady Bird by Greta Gerwig

Samuel Theis

After the success of PARTY GIRL (Cannes 2014 – Caméra d’Or, Prix d’Ensemble Un Certain Regard), Samuel Theis delves into the sentimental education of a young working-class boy.

Petite Nature (2020) - Party Girl (2014)
Countries

France

Elli Toivoniemi

Elli Toivoniemi ​is an award-winning producer-director from production company Tuffi Films based in Helsinki, Finland. She is a producer and co-founder-owner of the company, and behind acclaimed films like the Academy Award nominated short fiction ​Do I Have to Take Care of Everything?​ (2012). Her filmography as a producer includes over 20 films in all forms and lengths. Films produced by her have been awarded at festivals for instance at Sundance and Chicago, latest of which was ​Stupid Young Heart​ (2018) that won the Crystal Bear at the Berlinale Film Festival. Her first short fiction film as director, ​Role​, had its world premiere in Locarno International Film Festival in 2014, and her documentary film director debut ​Once I Was a Dragonfly​ won the Critics Choice Award in Docpoint film festival in January 2017. Games People Play​, a feature film produced by Toivoniemi, will premiere in 2020.

Force Of Habit (2020)
Countries

Finland

Films influences :

Toni Erdmann by Maren Ade

The Reunion by Anna Odell

Her by Spike Jonze

Marriage Story by Noah Baumbach

Jenni Toivoniemi

Jenni Toivoniemi​ is a writer-director. Toivoniemi’s debut as a director, short comedy ​The Date ​(2012)​,​ won several awards including International Short Fiction Jury Award at the Sundance Film Festival and a Special Mention at the Berlinale Generation 14+ in 2013. She has directed several short films, of which ​The Committee ​(2016), written and directed together with the Norwegian ​Gunhild Enger​, premiered in Locarno 2016 and ​The Door (2017) was selected for the national competition of the Tampere Film Festival in 2017. Toivoniemi has also written theatre plays, an audio play and a feature film ​Korso​ (2014) together with ​Kirsikka Saari. ​Their latest collaboration, children’s film ​Sihja - Fly With Me, will premiere in 2020, as well as her feature film ​Games People Play​.

Force Of Habit (2020)
Countries

Finland

Films influences :

Three Rooms of Melancholy by Pirjo Honkasalo

Shadows in Paradise by Aki Kaurismäki

The Good Son by Zaida Bergroth

The Snow Queen by Päivi Hartzell

The Collector by Auli Mantila

Jasmine Trinca

Jasmine Trinca is an Italian actress known for her roles in Nani Moretti’s LA STANZA DEL FIGLIO (Palme d’Or 2001) and Ferzan Özpetek’s LA DEA FORTUNA, for which she won the David di Donatello for Best Actress in a Leading Role in 2020. Her shortfilm as a director BEING MY MOM, starring Alba Rohrwacher, was premiered at Venice International Film Festival Orizzonti in 2020.

Marcel!
Countries

Italy

Jérémy Trouilh

Fanny Liatard and Jérémy Trouilh write and direct together. Their four short films, all rooted in a poetic urban and social reality, have won awards at many international festivals (Palm Springs, Clermont-Ferrand, Sundance Channel Award…). GAGARINE is their first feature.

Gagarine (2020)
Countries

France

Films influences :

Nobody Knows by Hirokazu Kore-eda

Happy As Lazzaro by Alba Rohrwacher

Close Encounters of the Third Kind by Steven Spielberg

The Return by Andrey Zvyagintsev

Mauvais Sang by Leos Carax

C.B.Yi

Chinese-Austrian director C.B.Yi immigrated to Austria as a teenager. He studied at the Vienna Film Academy under the guidance of Michael Haneke.

Moneyboys (2021) - Emei, Viewed From A Galloping Horse (2008)
Countries

Austria