Tonia is a Cypriot director, screenwriter and producer. She was born in Famagusta Cyprus. She graduated from The English School, Nicosia, a private English speaking high school in Cyprus, and then moved to Oxford, UK to study Hotel & Catering Management, only to find out that her true passion was film; she therefore proceeded to achieve a BA(Hons) in Media Production. After her graduation she moved back to Cyprus to start working as a director and producer, at the same time creating her own production company Zipcode production&design.
Tonia loves change- she has directed and produced for theatre, film and television in Cyprus and abroad, dealing with a variety of subjects, but focusing mostly on social and women’s issues. She has exhibited her work and participated in a big number of national and international film and performance festivals. She is a member of the European Film Academy and the European Women’s Audiovisual Network, Berlinale Talents alumna and co-artistic director of Cyprus Film Days International Festival, having also served as vice president of the Board of the Directors Guild of Cyprus.
Her short films DEAD END and LULLABY OF THE BUTTERFLY competed in more than 60 International Film Festivals together, including Locarno, Palm Springs, Cork, Busan, Dresden, Sarajevo, Encounters, Drama, also winning several awards for Best Director and Best Film. DEAD END is represented by SND Films (Amsterdam) and has been sold to Japan, China, USA, Belgium, Russia, France, Greece and Cyprus. Her directorial feature debut PAUSE (2018), a Cyprus/Greece co-production, represented by Film Republic (UK) participated in Connecting Cottbus and Mannheim Meeting Place co-production markets, as well as Karlovy Vary Works-in-Progress. It had its world premiere at the 53rd Karlovy Vary International Festival and has been officially selected in more than 35 international film festivals, including Cairo, Leeds, Stockholm, Thessaloniki, Santa Barbara, Seattle, Glasgow, Sofia and Transilvania. The film was also selected in the EFP programme “Europe! voices of women in film” at the Sydney Film Festival 2019, where ten films by Europe’s most outstanding women directors are presented. PAUSE also received multiple awards including the FIPRESCI Prize for Best film by the International Federation of Film Critics at the Thessaloniki International Film Festival and it was also nominated for Best First-time Director and Best Actress at the Hellenic Film Academy Iris Awards 2019. It will be released theatrically in the US, Greece and Cyprus in 2019.
Tonia is now developing her second and third feature films NALA AND STELLA and MOONSTRUCK, the latter of which won a special mention at the Scriptwriters Guild of Greece 2018 awards and was developed through Sources2 scriptwriting workshop with funding from the Cyprus Ministry of Education and Culture.
As producer, she is now developing a European TV series through Midpoint Feature TV Launch programme and two feature films THE ISLANDER by director Stelana Kliris (developed through EAVE Producers Workshop), and IMAN by directors Corinna Avraamidou and Kyriacos Tofarides (winner of best script at the 2018 Screenwriters of Greece competition), both funded by the Cyprus Ministry of Education and Culture. She has also produced and co-produced several short and feature films and has worked on numerous film productions as 1st Assistant Director and Production Manager. She has also exhibited her photography work many times over the years and won numerous awards in national and international photography competitions.
You can view a selection of her work on VIMEO.