Casting director / Germany
Katrin Vorderwülbecke is a German casting director, based in Berlin. She was born in Sapporo/ Japan and moved 4 years later with her family to Germany. From 1993-1997 she studied Visual Communication at the University of Art and Design in Offenbach (Hochschule für Gestaltung) with filmmaking as her major. To broaden her experience in film production she moved to England and embarked upon an MA in Directing and Cinematography at "The Northern Media School“ in Sheffield. After directing several international award winning short films, she started working on feature films as Co-Writer, Assistant Director, Coach for teenage actors and DOP. For the last 15 years Katrin has worked as a casting director. From her early experiences in short films she worked with non-professional actors and cast them as part of her script research. Casting „real people“ became her trademark, demonstrated in one of her latest and most outstanding casting director works „Western“ by Valeska Grisebach, which premiered in Cannes Film Festival last year and won several international awards.
Scriptwriter, director and actress / France
In 2017, she directs her first short film: shot in Mexico, "Ojalá" has been selected to some 20 international film festivals and won the Grand Prize of the Jury at the Takavoir Festival and the Audience Awards of the European Festival “Freedom, I film you” and Bristol DepicT! Short film festival.
In 2018, she is presenting her two last works: "Cet Amour-là" (“That Love”) which was shot in Paris and "Familjen" (“The Family”), codirected with Vegard Fjaervoll in Sweden (currently in postproduction).
Her script "Célestine" won the Eurydice Award in 2017 and she will direct it during summer 2018.
As a scriptwriter, she co-wrote with Norwegian director Torfinn Iversen the short films "Return", "Unspoken" and "Just like kids", all selected in various international festivals.
She is currently developing a six episodes anticipation serie.
As an actress, she has acted in over forty French and foreign short films, especially "Tête-à-Tête" (directed by US director Lisa Reznik) for which she won the award of "Best Actress in a Leading Role" at the Multicultural Film Festival (CA, 2015) and "Jiminy" (directed by Arthur Môlard, with Denis Lavant) for which the actors were awarded with a "Best acting" prize at the Underground Film Festival of Munich (2016).
Filmmaker / Palestine
Jerusalem-born filmmaker Mahasen Nasser-Eldin tells stories of resistance and resilience, crafting carefully researched and scripted narratives that restore new life to forgotten figures and celebrate those on the margins of society.
Her films, which have screened at local and international festivals, feature characters such as Karimeh Abbud, the first woman photographer in Palestine (Restored Pictures, 2012), Mays, a Palestinian Circus School artist (From Palestine with Love, 2010), Samia, a 71 year old feisty, active and committed woman whose life is marked by her struggle for the right of girls to education and the right of Palestinians to live in Jerusalem (Samia, 2009), and Abu Daoud, an East Jerusalem father whose son is due to appear next day in the Israeli military court (On the East Side, 2007).
While these films focus on pre- and post-Nakba Palestine, her current film, now in post-production, ventures further afield to follow the stories told by the people of Canada's First Nations.
A meticulous researcher, Mahasen specializes in reconstructing and scripting historical narratives using audio and visual archives. Her research interest focuses on the use of film in the writing of historical narratives. She is currently conducting research for a film about early modern Palestinian women in 1920 Palestine.
Mahasen holds a master's degree in Arab Studies from Georgetown University, Washington, D.C., and a master's degree in filmmaking from Goldsmith's College, London. She currently teaches film production and film studies at Bethlehem's Dar al-Kalima University College of Arts and Culture.
Animator, video director and musician / Norway
Lasse Gjertsen is a Norwegian animator, video director and musician. He is best known for his videos and cartoons from Youtube's early days, and is considered to be one of the first Youtube-personalities. Lasse has directed short films, music videos, infomercials, commissioned work for TV, web and oddly enough even for the Norwegian royal family.
Sami Al-Haw (Gaza-mentor)
Filmmaker / Gaza, Palestine
Sami has 10 years of experience as an artist, filmmaker, and communications and media specialist with the Gazan private sector, Italian and British non-governmental organizations and the United Nations. With the UN in Gaza Sami designed and implemented large scale children’s programs including a flagship summer recreational program for 250,000 children, giving children a rare opportunity to simply play and learn in a non-politicised environment. With UNRWA TV, Sami produced and directed Gaza’s first ever child drama series, called “The Neighbourhood” where children in refugee camps were confronted with difficult choices and learned how to make the best one. His desire to help children in refugee camps through art and media stems from his own childhood as a refugee in Jabalyia camp in northern Gaza. From the age of 16 he participated in art and film exhibitions and drama, eventually teaching these same art forms to other kids in the camp. For the last 10 years, Sami and the other 2 million people in Gaza have lived under a blockade, which restricts the movement of people and goods. Despite the complexities of life under blockade, Sami’s hope for better days is growing. Sami has a BA in Art Education from Al-Aqsa University in Gaza. He lives in Gaza with his wife and daughter Lynn (6), and sons Abood (3) and Zain (1).
Alexander Aarøen Pedersen
Musician, Composer / Norway
Barents Sound design
Alexander is a passionate and versatile composer, arranger and pianist. Despite his young age, his fiery love for musical storytelling has pushed him around the world, and acquired him a vast artistic experience. His recent projects include: Recorded and conducting his own music with the Hollywood Studio Orchestra, at Warner Brothers, Los Angeles. “The Wrath of The Music God” – A 18 minute animated short, where Alexander wrote both the music and the script. “The Blue Note” – A theatrical piece in which he wrote the script and a jazz score. “The Thief and the Kaleidoscope” – A concept album for big band and actor, where he composed music and played piano himself.
In 2017, Alexander graduated with first class honors from the prestigious Pulse College, where he took his master in film scoring. His studies were supported by a large-scale scholarship from Norway.
Sound Engeneer / Norway
Sivert har studert på Musikkonservatoriet i Tromsø hvor han har tatt en bachelorgrad i pedagogikk og rytmisk gitar. Etter fem år på konservatoriet dro Sivert til Sydney for å studere lydteknikk ved Australian Institute of Music. Sivert har lang erfaring både innen undervisning og som lydtekniker for mange av byens artister og band.
Sivert has studied at the Conservatory of Music in Tromsø, where he has taken a bachelor's degree in pedagogy and rhythmic guitar. After five years at the conservatory, Sivert went to Sydney to study audio technology at the Australian Institute of Music. Sivert has extensive experience in teaching as well as sound technician for many of the city's artists and bands.
ISMET BACHTIAR NORWAY
Workshop leader, NUFF Special Project
Ismet began his career as a filmmaker first before pursuing his love for interactive entertainment. He has since worked as an Editor of game and pop culture magazine, designed games and viral marketing campaigns for Funcom and EA/Playfish. In 2013, he co-founded Plus Point, an interactive studio based in Tromsø. Since then, he divides his time by working as a new media consultant at Filmvekshuset Tvibit, nurturing young creative talents.