Kim Longinotto

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Kim Longinotto
Born 1952
London, England
Occupation Director, producer, cinematographer

Kim Longinotto (born 1952)[1] is a British documentary film maker,[2] well known for making films that highlight the plight of female victims of oppression or discrimination.[3] Longinotto has made more than 20 films, usually featuring inspiring women and girls at their core. She’s delved into female genital mutilation in Kenya (The Day I Will Never Forget), women standing up to rapists in India (Pink Saris), and the story of Salma, an Indian Muslim woman who smuggled poetry out to the world while locked up by her family for decades.[4]

Early life[edit]

Longinotto was born to an Italian father and a Welsh mother in 1952; her father was a photographer who later went bankrupt. At the age of 10 she was sent to a draconian all-girls boarding school, where she found it hard to make friends due to the mistress forbidding anyone to talk to her for a term after she became lost during a school trip. After a period of homelessness Longinotto went on to Essex University to study English and European literature and later followed friend and future filmmaker Nick Broomfield to the National Film and Television School.[5] While studying, she made a documentary about her boarding school that was shown at the London Film Festival,[6] since then she has continued to be a prolific documentary film maker.


Longinotto is an observational filmmaker. Observational cinema, also known as direct cinema, free cinema or cinema verite, usually excludes certain documentary techniques such as advanced planning, scripting, staging, narration, lighting, re-enactment and interviewing.[7] Longinotto's unobtrusiveness, which is an important part of observational documentary, gives the women on camera a certain voice and presence that might not have emerged with another documentary genre.[8]


  • Pride of Place (1976) – Director / Camera (as Kimona Landseer)
  • Theatre Girls (1978) – Director/Cinematographer
  • Underage (1982) – Director/Cinematographer
  • Eat the Kimono (1989) – Director/Cinematographer
  • Hidden Faces (1990) – Director/Cinematographer
  • The Good Wife of Tokyo (1992) – Director
  • Dream Girls (1994) – Director/Cinematographer/Producer
  • Shinjuku Boys (1995) – Director/Cinematographer/Producer
  • Rock Wives (1996) (TV) – Director / Camera
  • Divorce Iranian Style (1998) – Director / Camera
  • Gaea Girls (2000) – Director/Cinematographer/Producer
  • Runaway (2001) – Director/Cinematographer
  • The Day I Will Never Forget (2002) – Director/Cinematographer
  • Sisters in Law (2005) – Director/Cinematographer/Producer
  • Hold Me Tight, Let Me Go (2007) – Director/Cinematographer/Producer
  • Rough Aunties (2008) – Director/ Cinematographer[6]
  • Pink Saris (de) (2010) – Director / Camera
  • Salma (2013) (de) – Director / Camera
  • Love Is All (2014) – Director
  • Dreamcatcher (2015) – Director / Camera



  1. ^ Lacey, Liam (6 May 2010). "Kim Longinotto: capturing women in movies". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved 29 August 2010. 
  2. ^ Jason Wood (2006). Talking movies: contemporary world filmmakers in interview. Wallflower Press. p. 156. ISBN 978-1-904764-90-8. Retrieved 30 November 2010. 
  3. ^ Gwendolyn Audrey Foster (1995). Women film directors: an international bio-critical dictionary. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 196. ISBN 978-0-313-28972-9. Retrieved 30 November 2010. 
  4. ^ Brown, Maggie (1 November 2015). "'A lot of documentary makers look down on TV'". The Guardian. Retrieved 5 March 2016. 
  5. ^ Corinn Columpar; Sophie Mayer (2009). There She Goes: feminist filmmaking and beyond. Wayne State University Press. p. 107. ISBN 978-0-8143-3390-7. 
  6. ^ a b Kira Cochrane (12 February 2010). "Kim Longinotto: 'Film-making saved my life'". The Guardian. Retrieved 23 June 2011. 
  7. ^ Aufderheide, Patricia (2007). Documentary Film A Very Short Introduction. New York: Oxford University Press Inc. p. 44. 
  8. ^ White, Patricia (3 March 2011). "Cinema Solidarity: The Documentary Practice of Kim Longinotto". Cinema Journal. 46 (1): 122. doi:10.1353/cj.2007.0008. Retrieved 28 November 2011. 

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