February 21, 1978 |
Buffalo, NY, U.S.
Suzi Yoonessi (born February 21, 1978) is an Iranian-American filmmaker living in Los Angeles, CA. She wrote and directed the award-winning feature film Dear Lemon Lima, and The Spring of Sorrow for the Independent Television Service (ITVS) online FutureStates series. Yoonessi's short films No Shoulder and Dear Lemon Lima are distributed by Shorts International and Vanguard Cinema and her documentary film Vern is distributed by National Film Network and is in the permanent collection of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.
Suzi Yoonessi was born in Buffalo, New York, where she attended Nichols School. Yoonessi was a member of Buffalo's first all-girl band Bertha Mason during the Riot Grrrl movement in the early 90s. Yoonessi studied photography and film at the San Francisco Art Institute. Upon graduation, she worked for Surface Magazine in the editorial department and moved to New York to pursue filmmaking after being awarded a Jerome Foundation grant for her documentary film Vern. Yoonessi received her MFA from Columbia University's School of the Arts where she was the recipient of the FMI Directing Fellowship. She currently resides in Los Angeles.
Suzi Yoonessi's first feature film Dear Lemon Lima premiered at the Los Angeles Film Festival where it received critical acclaim and a jury prize for Outstanding Performance. The film went on to play in over 80 film festivals, picking up audience awards and a grand jury prize at the San Francisco International Asian American Film Festival. The film was released internationally, then domestically on VOD and in theaters in Los Angeles and New York by Phase 4 Films. Yoonessi directed The Spring of Sorrow for the Independent Television Service FutureStates series.
- 2010 Camério Irvin Pelletier Humanitas - Festival International de Cinema Jeunesse de Rimouski
- 2010 Camério Hydro-Québec - Festival International de Cinema Jeunesse de Rimouski
- 2010 Miloš Macourek Award - Film Festival Zlín
- 2009 Audience Award - Woodstock Film Festival
- 2009 Audience Award - Anchorage International Film Festival
- 2009 Emerging Star Award (Savanah Wiltfong) - Anchorage International Film Festival
- 2009 Spirit of Independence - Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival
- 2009 Finalist, Bandeira Paulista - São Paulo International Film Festival
- 2009 Grand Jury Prize - San Francisco International Asian American Film Festival
- 2009 Outstanding Performance (Shayne Topp) - Los Angeles Film Festival
- 2008 Tribeca All Access On Track Grant
- 2008 Film Independent FIND Kodak Grant
- 2007 National Geographic All Roads Film Grant
- 2006 Jerome Foundation NYC Media Arts Grant
- 2002 Jerome Foundation NYC Media Arts Grant
- 2010 The Spring of Sorrow
- 2009 Dear Lemon Lima
- 2006 Dear Lemon Lima short
- 2005 No Shoulder
- 2004 Vern
- 2005 Me and You and Everyone We Know (Associate Producer)
- 2004 Vern
- 2001 3 Weeks After Paradise"