Sturla Gunnarsson

Sturla Gunnarsson

Board Member, Ex-Officio

Biography

Born in Iceland and raised in Vancouver, Sturla Gunnarsson is one of Canada's best-known and most accomplished filmmakers, equally at home directing feature films, documentaries and television drama. His films have been recognized with a multitude of awards, including Emmy, Genie and Gemini Awards, a Prix Italia, many Best of Festival Awards and an Oscar nomination. His films have also been featured and recognized in film festivals around the world. Gunnarsson's recent feature films include the medieval epic Beowulf and Grendel (2006) starring Gerard Butler, Stellan Skarsgaard and Sarah Polley; the comedy Rare Birds (2001) starring William Hurt and Molly Parker and an adaptation of Rohinton Mistry's Booker short-listed novel Such a Long Journey (1998), starring Roshan Seth, Om Puri and Naseeridin Shah. Between them, the films received over 20 Genie nominations and were among the top grossing Canadian films in the years they were released. His television drama credits include Scorn and 100 Days in the Jungle, each of which won Gemini Awards for best television movie; DaVinci's Inquest, for which Gunnarsson won a Best Directing Gemini; Intelligence; and the Canada/UK WW2 aviation mini-series Above and Beyond starring Richard E Grant, Lianne Baliban and Josh Ackland, for which he won the DGC Award for outstanding achievement in directing. Gunnarsson's documentaries include the post-apartheid love story, Gerrie & Louise, which was described by the New Republic's Stanley Kaufmann as “the gripping account of a journey through delusion to enlightenment.” His most recent film is Air India 182, which opened the 2008 Hot Docs Festival, where it was described by Canadian Press as “a movie so gripping and suspenseful in its retelling of a large-scale tragedy that it frequently seems like a tautly written drama instead of grim reality.” Gunnarsson lives in Toronto with his wife and two children.