Samantha Nell is a South African writer, director, and producer. She completed her MFA at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts Asia in Singapore in 2014. She has directed and produced short films on four continents and worked in countries including Singapore, South Korea, Hong Kong, Japan, India, South Africa, Finland and the United States.
In 2012 her short film script “Stiff” was selected for the Focus Features’ Africa First Program. The film premiered at the 2014 Palm Springs International Shortsfest. It won Best Short Film at the 2014 Africa International Film Festival in Nigeria and played at the 2015 Durban International Film Festival.
In 2014 Samantha produced “Tortoise”, starring David Arquette and shot in Los Angeles, for writer and director Jean Lee as part of the AFI Directing Workshop for Women. Upon returning to South Africa she participated in the NFVF’s Female-Only Filmmaker programme by directing “Evelyn” by writer Tiny Mungwe. The film premiered at the 2015 Durban International Film Festival.
In 2015 Samantha co-founded Yellow Box Bioscope, a boutique production company, with Mark Middlewick. She is currently completing “Love Motel”, a short film shot on location in South Korea. Samantha participated in the Durban Talents programme at the 2015 Durban Film Festival. She participated in the Cannes South Africa Film Factory with Michael Wahrmann from Brazil to produce “The Beast” which premiered at the Director’s Fortnight in the 2016 Cannes Film Festival and has gone on to play festivals around the world.
In 2016 her feature film “Miles From Nowhere” received development funding from the National Film and Video Foundation. The film will be produced by Elias Ribeiro (Urucu Media) and Bongiwe Selane (Blingola Media).
In 2017 she participated in the Berlinale Talents.