Atsuko Hirayanagi

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Atsuko Hirayanagi
ResidenceSan Francisco, California
Alma materNYU, Tisch School of the Arts
OccupationWriter, Director

Atsuko Hirayanagi (平栁 敦子, Hirayanagi Atsuko) is a Japanese-American filmmaker, born in Nagano and raised in Chiba, Japan.


She is a graduate of NYU Tisch School of the Arts with a Master of Fine Arts degree in film production.

While in graduate school, her second year project, Mo Ikkai, won the Grand Prix at the 2012 Short Shorts Film Festival in Asia.[1]

Her thesis short film, Oh Lucy!, received a Tisch's First Prize Wasserman Award at the 2014 First Run Festival,[2] and also won more than 25 awards[3] around the globe, including prizes at Cannes Film Festival (2014),[4] Sundance Film Festival (2015),[5] and the Toronto International Film Festival (2014).[6]

Her feature-length version of Oh Lucy! was a recipient of the 2016 Sundance/NHK Award.[7] She was recently named one of the ″20 Rising Women Directors You Need to Know″ by IndieWire.,[8] and was nominated at the 2018 Film Independent Spirit Awards for Best First Feature[9]

Hirayanagi was invited to join the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in 2018.[10]

Personal life[edit]

Hirayanagi is a black belt in Kyokushin Karate, and came in 3rd place in the Los Angeles Cup Women's Category.[11]

Atsuko currently resides in San Francisco, CA.


  1. ^ "Hirayanagi Earns Grand Prix Award". Tisch School of the Arts. June 6, 2012. Retrieved April 3, 2018.
  2. ^ "IMDb First Run Festival, 2014 Award Winners". IMDb.
  3. ^ "Oh Lucy! (2014 film) Awards". IMDb.
  4. ^ Ford, Rebecca (May 22, 2014). "Cannes: Cinefondation Selection Winner Announced". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved April 3, 2018.
  5. ^ "2015 Sundance Film Festival Announces Short Film Awards". The Sundance Institute. January 28, 2015. Retrieved April 3, 2018.
  6. ^ Wilner, Norman (September 14, 2014). "TIFF 2014: And the winners are". Now (newspaper). Retrieved April 3, 2018.
  7. ^ "Sundance Institute/NHK Award 2016 Announced". NHK. February 12, 2016. Retrieved April 3, 2018.
  8. ^ Sharf, Zack (June 14, 2017). "The Future is Female: 20 Rising Women Directors You Need to Know". IndieWire. Retrieved April 3, 2018.
  9. ^ "Film Independent Spirit Award, 2018 Nominees". Los Angeles Times.
  10. ^ Khatchaturian, Maane (June 25, 2018). "Academy Invites Record 928 New Members". Variety (magazine). Retrieved July 11, 2018.
  11. ^ "Kyokushin in LA, Instructor Profile". Kyokushin in LA.