Mounia Akl is a Lebanese director and writer living in New York. She holds a bachelor’s degree in architecture from ALBA and an MFA in Directing from Columbia University. Apart from directing, Mounia has taught film directing at the NHSI film summer institute at Northwestern University, Chicago and was a preceptor in Screenwriting at Columbia University, New York where she was also Richard Peña's teaching assistant. Her previous work includes fiction films, web series, fashion films and recently a chapter from an omnibus feature film made with Breaking Wave Pictures, the collective she co-founded in New York.
Her last short film, Submarine, was in the official selection of the 69th Cannes Film Festival in the Cinefondation category. It also had its North American premiere at the Toronto international Film Festival and its MENA premiere at the Dubai International Film Festival where it won the Muhr Jury Prize. Submarine was awarded the James Bridges production grant, the Kodak Motion Picture Product Grant, the IFP Audience award, the Liberty Global Best Film Award at the Denver Film Festival and an honorable mention at the Atlanta Film Festival.
Just recently, Mounia was chosen by the Directors' Fortnight to represent Lebanon at the 70th Cannes Film Festival as part of Lebanon Factory. She co-wrote and co-directed with Costa Rican director Neto Villalobos and their film "El Gran Libano" opened the Directors' Fortnight on May 18, 2017 then went on to screen at the BFI and the Sarajevo Film Festival.
In October 2017, Mounia directed the episode “Forbidden Love” in London from the “Do Not Disturb” Series, produced by Pulse Films and Jude Law, and for content production house BlackPills. Just a little after that, she completed “11 minutes, 11 dreams”, a Fashion Film in collaboration with Fashion designer Sandra Mansour which was initially released exclusively on Vogue with an article describing the project.
Mounia is currently developing her feature film script, Costa Brava, in the Cannes Film Festival’s residency where she was chosen to be a resident this year. She is co-writing with Spanish Screenwriter Clara Roquet and it will be produced by Abbout Productions.