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Tonia Mishiali | Τώνια Μισιαλή

Film Director | Σκηνοθέτις κινηματογράφου

Tonia is a writer, director and producer. She is a member of the Hellenic and European Film Academies 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 Directors Guild of Cyprus.


After many years of directing for television and theatre, Tonia dared fulfil her dream, by pursuing her passion for cinema, and become a filmmaker. Her first short film, DEAD END (2013), had its world premiere at the prestigious A-list Locarno Film Festival, and then travelled to numerous international film festivals, like Palm Springs, Encounters, Busan, Curta Cinema, Drama and Cork, winning several awards for Best Director and Best Film. DEAD END is represented by the SND Films and has been sold to Asia, USA and Europe. Her second short film, LULLABY OF THE BUTTERFLY (2014), was awarded Best National Film at the International Short Film Festival of Cyprus and was selected at numerous film festivals including Sarajevo, Dresden, Drama and Encounters. Her documentary short I DON’T LIKE THE WIND, I LIKE THE SUN (2020) premiered at Oscar qualifying Tirana International Film Festival and won Best Director at The International Short Film Festival of Cyprus.


Her debut feature PAUSE (2018), represented by Film Republic (UK), participated in cocoPITCH 2015 and in Karlovy Vary Works-in-Progress 2017. It has been officially selected in more than seventy international film festivals, including Santa Barbara, Seattle as well as many FIAPF accredited 'A' list festivals, like Karlovy Vary, Cairo, Stockholm, Sofia, Kitzbuhel and Transilvania. At the 2019 Sydney Film Festival, PAUSE was selected for the European Film Promotion’s "Europe! voices of women in film" section where films by Europe's ten most outstanding women directors were presented. PAUSE received rave reviews internationally from established media, including the Hollywood Reporter and LA times, and was listed one of "twenty most daring films of 2019” by Rotten Tomatoes. PAUSE received twelve awards including the FIPRESCI Prize for Best film by the International Federation of Film Critics at the Thessaloniki International Film Festival and it was received nominations for “Best First-time Director” and “Best Actress” at the Hellenic Film Academy Iris Awards 2019. Its screenplay is listed in the core collection of the Margaret Herrick Library of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. It has been released theatrically in USA and Europe, sold to many territories in Asia, while also streaming on Amazon Prime USA and UK, HBO Europe, FILMIN Spain and RTV Croatia.


Tonia is now developing several projects under her own production company, Bark Like A Cat Films, which she setup with the aim to support her own directing projects as well as daring films by fellow filmmakers. She is developing her second and third feature films, MAYA and NALA AND STELLA. MAYA won a special mention at the Scriptwriters Guild of Greece 2018 awards and was developed through Sources2, MFI Script2Film and Torino Film Lab Next, with script development funding from the Cyprus Ministry of Culture, while it has also been shortlisted for the second-round of Sundance Screenwriters Lab 2021. NALA AND STELLA has been selected for the Agora Crossroads Co-production Forum of the Thessaloniki International Film Festival 2020. At the same time she is developing the short film BOYS OF SUMMER by director Emilios Avraam, developed through Midpoint Shorts 2020.


Filmography (as director and producer)

“Maya” | fiction/feature | drama/fantasy | (in development)

“Nala and Stella” | fiction/feature | drama | (in development)

"I don't like the wind, I like the sun" (2020) | 24min | Cyprus | documentary

“I can hear my footsteps” (2020) | 3 min. | Cyprus | experimental

“Perhaps I am already dead” (2020) | 3 min. | Cyprus | experimental

“Pause” (2018) | 96min | Cyprus/Greece | drama

“Lullaby of the Butterfly” (2014) | 20min | Cyprus | drama

“Dead End” (2013) | 15min | Cyprus | drama


Filmography (as producer)

“Boys of Summer” | fiction/short | drama | dir. Emilios Avraam | (in development)

"The Islander" | feature | romantic comedy | dir. Stelana Kliris | prod. co. Meraki Films | (in development)

“Iman” | feature | drama | dir. Kyriakos Tofarides & Corinna Avraamidou | as development producer | prod. co. A.B. Seahorse Film Productions | (in development)

“Life Unexpected” | mini TV series | comedy | written by Stelana Kliris | as development producer | prod. co. Meraki Films | (in development)

“Senior Citizen“ (2020) | feature | drama | dir. Marinos Kartikkis

“To the moon and back” (2018) | 10min. | Cyprus | romance | dir. Stelana Kliris | prod. co. Meraki Films

“Magic beans” (2015) | 101min. | Cyprus |  comedy | dir. Theodoros Panayides

“Family member” (2015) | 100min. | Cyprus | drama | dir. Marinos Kartikkis

“Aishe is going on vacation” (2013) | 20 min. | Cyprus | drama | dir. Haris Therapis