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In a short time Taika Waititi has not only proven himself one of the most gifted comedy-writers in contemporary cinema, he has forged a specific vision of the world that retains a child-like innocence whilst teetering on the edge of rudeness. After a number of successful shorts, Waititi made a splash internationally with 'Eagle vs. Shark' (2007) an oddball romance that balances quirkiness with genuine emotion. The same is true of 'Boy' (2010), which was completed after a short stint writing and directing episodes of 'Flight of the Conchords'. An amusing role in the otherwise forgettable 'The Green Lantern' (2011) raised his profile further – and highlighted the attention Hollywood was paying to him – and he brought his skill for jubilant juvenile antics to episodes of 'The Inbetweeners'. 'What We Do in the Shadows' (2014) extended a 2005 short to a feature. For all its ingenuity and silliness, the film feels like a novel idea stretched to capacity. Whereas the recent 'Hunt for the Wilderpeople', with its sparky chemistry between Sam Neill and future star Julian Dennison, is one of the 2016's unalloyed delights. Waititi is currently completing work on the latest Marvel instalment 'Thor: Ragnarok'.
Polish director Andrzej Wajda, born in 1926, has made more than 35 feature films, including 'Kanal', the first film ever made about the Warsaw Uprising. His films present a unique narrative of Poland's post-war history, and deal with the moral issues raised by the conflict of individual choice and political action. He received an honorary Oscar in 2000 for his contribution to cinema.
Peter Lindsay Weir, born in 1944, is an Australian film director. His films 'The Cars That Ate Paris' (1974), 'Picnic at Hanging Rock' (1975) and 'The Last Wave' (1977) paved the way for the Australian New Wave in the 1970s and early 80s. He went on to direct a diverse group of American and international films including Oscar nominees 'Dead Poets Society' (1989), 'The Truman Show' (1998) and 'Master and Commander' (2003).
Wim Wenders, born in Düsseldorf in 1945, ranks among the important directors of world cinema and is one of the leading representatives of 'New German Film'. In his early work, Wenders created uprooted characters trying to survive in post-war Germany. In the 1990s Wenders became first chairman and later president of the European Film Academy. He has received honorary doctorates from numerous academic institutes.
Ben Wheatley was born in Essex, United Kingdom in 1972. Originally interested in short films and animation, he exhibited most of his work online in order to attract a greater audience. A number of videos he posted went viral and were subsequently picked up by major media companies. He is known for 'Sightseers' (2012) and 'A Field in England' (2013).
Born in 1961 in Lancaster, United Kingdom, Michael Winterbottom read English at Oxford University before studying television courses at Bristol University. His influences range from Jean-Luc Godard to Ingmar Bergman, as his films focus heavily on a place's influence on its characters, and combine social realism with stylistic verve and vibrant photography.