Athina Tsoulis

Director

Born in Greece and raised in Adelaide, Athina Tsoulis began making films after she moved to Auckland in the 1980s. Black comedy The Invisible Hand was invited to multiple festivals, including Clermont-Ferrand. Long keen to tell women's stories, Tsoulis made her feature film debut in 1998 with edgy comedy I'll Make You Happy. Her follow-up, small town drama Jinx Sister, starring Sara Wiseman, was Qantas-nominated for the Best Low-Budget Feature of 2008. Third feature Stars in Her Eyes (2016) involved both screen industry veterans, and students from Unitec — where Tsoulis has for a number of years taught directing. 

… It’s an upbeat little number, peopled with the larger-than-life characters you would expect from its K’Rd setting, and shot through with a cheerful warmth rarely seen in New Zealand movies. Helene Wong, reviewing I’ll Make You Happy in The Listener, 10 April 1999