Anne-GretHe Bjarup Riis
This thesp-turned-helmer is something of a Renaissance woman. Riis has performed for theater, film and television, and is also a visual artist, novelist, columnist for several newspapers, teacher and composer. Her feature debut, the WWII historical drama “This Life,” proved a phenomenon in Denmark, resulting in upward of 730,000 admissions.
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With pics including “Children of Love,” “The Only One,” “Happy Together” and “The Over the Hill Band,” Enthoven has honed a reputation for deft helming and eliciting spot-on performances even as his subject matter alternates between comedy and serious drama. Crowd-pleaser “Come as You Are” has already nabbed top honors at fests in Montreal, Valladolid and San Jose.
Basel-born Fehlbaum trained at Munich’s prestigious film and television academy HFF, where his atmospheric short “Am Flaucher” attracted the attention of German producer Thomas Wobke, who fast-tracked Fehlbaum’s gripping, visually impressive debut, the post-apocalyptic thriller “Hell.” Pic nabbed the Young German Cinema Award for director at the Munich fest.
The animator and director counts as career highlights his work on Sylvain Chomet’s “The Illusionist” (2010) and story-boarding “Asterix and the Vikings” (2004). As well as helming 2D toon “Wrinkles,” Ferreras served as co-screenwriter and editor. The pic nabbed two Spanish Goyas and the audience award at Belgium’s Anima fest..
While his debut, “A Trip,” has traveled the fest circuit (it recently nabbed multiple kudos in Nashville), Gazvoda, also a novelist and playwright, is prepping a Slovenian-Croatian-Dutch love story as his second feature. “A Trip” is still on screens in Slovenia and ranks as the year’s most successful local film.
Will Sharpe and Tom Kingsley
U.K., 26 and 27
Sharpe and Kingsley have been working together since meeting at Cambridge U. in 2007, where they wrote and directed the national tour of the Cambridge Footlights. Sharpe spent a year performing with the Royal Shakespeare Company; more recently, he appeared in the latest series of BBC’s “Sherlock.”
Kingsley is a director at Blink Prods., helming musicvideos and commercials. His work has played on MTV and at the BFI. He and Sharp won trophies for newcomers at the Evening Standard Film Awards for their debut “Black Pond.” They intend to keep working together and are collaborating on an adaptation of Voltaire’s “Candide.”
Educated at London Film School, Martens is one of Norway’s top directors of commercials. After “United” (2003), his droll, grungy second feature “Jackpot,” based on a Jo Nesbo story, again illustrates his unique comedic sensibility with a clear and definite style and voice. He is prepping a TV series.
Polak’s eye-catching debut “Hemel,” a bold depiction of a young woman’s compulsive and transgressive sexual behavior, nabbed a critics award at the 2012 Berlinale. An alum of the Binger Lab, graduate of the Netherlands Film and Television Academy and daughter of filmmakers, Polak has helmed a number of shorts.
Hafsteinn Gunnar Sigurdsson
A graduate of the film program at New York’s Columbia U., Reykjavik-born Sigurdsson earned top Torino fest honors for his debut, the character-driven dramedy “Either Way,” set in northern Iceland’s barren wilderness. His next project, “Cold Spring,” will also feature a comic and tender depiction of universal conflicts in an extreme setting.
A pioneer in engaging online communities in film production and an in-demand speaker, Vuorensola (who debuted with the 2005 Star Trek parody “Star Wreck: In the Pirkinning”) successfully crowd-sourced a portion of the funding for his second feature, sci-fi comedy “Iron Sky.” His latest project is the 3D digital feature “I Killed Adolf Hitler.”
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10 Euro Directors to Watch