Maya Sanbar Bulbula (800x533) (650x433)

Film Director & Producer

“My experience is that everyone has a story to tell, and if that story is told with naked emotional truth, then it can touch others anywhere in the world and contribute to a better understanding of one another.” Maya Sanbar

Maya is both a director and a producer specialising in independent films, most of which have premiered at the Cannes, Sundance, Toronto or Berlin International Film Festivals before making their way  around the world.

She is seen as an expert in stimulating cross-cultural understanding through film, and is currently writing a chapter of a new book on Middle East Cinema that will be published in 2015. She has been interviewed on a number of radio and television channels including BBC World, MBC, CNN and Al Jazeera International.

Maya’s work history has been remarkably diverse. After an initial career in law, Maya became the Head of Worldwide Advertising for HSBC Global before joining Three, a UK based video telecommunications giant, as their Director of Partnership Development.

In 2004, she was appointed Director of Mobile Marketing to Tony Blair’s Cabinet Office for a year before embarking on a full-time film career.

Maya has always specialised in start-ups, be it setting up a new company, or a new section within a larger group, and is always enthusiastic about being a motor for positive change.

Her work with UNESCO and Mother Theresa has enabled her to experience firsthand people’s ability to make the most of their lives with a little help. Her current work with the Madrinha Trust helps educate underprivileged bright children  around the world, from Africa to Nepal, and also in the Middle East, a region she is passionate about.

Maya was born in Beirut and is of Palestinian-Lebanese descent. She has spent most of her life living between France, Brazil and the UK, where she currently resides. She has spent much time in Gaza, the West Bank and other conflict zones where her work focused on promoting  cross-cultural understanding and innovative ways of dealing with challenges.

BASED IN: London, UK

LANGUAGES: French, Arabic, English, Spanish and Portuguese.

The Narrow Frame of Midnight (2014)
The Muslims are Coming! (2013)
When I Saw You (2012)
Mapping Beirut (2010)
The Time that Remains (2009)
Trouble the Water (2008)
Salt of this Sea (2008)
Goal Dreams (2006)
Frontline Football (2005)
Hope (2004)

BBC The Strand Archive, September 2011 starts at 10:50