Alexandru Solomon emerged as a young director of photography in the early 1990s. Along with filming feature films, he started making documentaries. Solomon was among the first Romanian filmmakers who committed themselves to what was then a compromised genre. Today, he is one of the leading political filmmakers coming out of Romania, and is also active on the international scene.
Solomon's previous works, The Great Communist Bank Robbery, Cold Waves and Kapitalism: Our Secret Recipe, are chilling slices of political history that deal with propaganda, corruption and manipulation. Tarzan’s Testicles premiered in 2017. Alexandru teaches at the Arts University in Bucharest, and is the director of One World Romania Festival.
See You in Chechnya
Alexander Kvatashidze was born in 1977 in Tbilisi, Georgia. In 1996 he graduated from Nikoladze Art College with a qualification as a sculptor. In 2001 he earned his BA degree in Art and Humanities at Tbilisi State University. In 2005-2006, Kvatashidze studied at the film department of California State University in San Jose. Since 2006 Alexander has worked as a director, DoP or producer on various projects, most of which were documentaries. He founded Lokokina Studio in 2009.
Mr Gay Syria
Ayse Toprak is a filmmaker based in Istanbul. She received a BFA in Film & television from NYU's Tisch School of the Arts, and an MA from the New School. She has worked for Channel Thirteen/PBS in New York, and produced for Al Jazeera in London, Doha and Istanbul. Toprak is focused on how documentaries, their subjects and colorful characters can have a far-reaching impact on society; films that manage to trigger a national dialogue on neglected issues, eradicate prejudice or breach hitherto taboo subjects are her favorite medium, as well as personal and professional ambition. She is fascinated by people pushed to the peripheries of society who have personal, vivid, and compelling stories. Her conviction in filmmaking comes from her wish to tell the stories of such people to share their different and unique ways of looking at the world.
Dieudo Hamadi was born in Kisangani (Democratic Republic of the Congo) in 1984, and studied medicine in 2005-2008. He then attended several documentary workshops. Hamadi is the author of two short documentaries, Ladies in Waiting and Zero Tolerance that caught the attention of festivals in Europe (Berlin, Paris, and Amsterdam) and North America (Toronto). Ladies In Waiting received the Pierre and Yolande Perrault scholarship at Cinema du Réel (Paris) in 2009. In 2013, Atalaku, his first feature-length documentary about the 2011 election campaign in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, won the Joris Ivens award for best first film, Best Foreign Film at the San Diego Black Film Festival (USA), the Jury Prize at FIDADOC (Agadir, Morocco) and three other awards. In 2014, National Diploma received both the International Prize of the SCAM and the Potemkin award at Cinéma du Réel (France), and was selected at TIFF (Toronto) and nearly 60 festivals worldwide. In 2015, Mama Colonel, his latest film, received assistance in post-production from the Sundance Institute and IDFA Bertha Fund.