Finnish director, born in Orimattila in 1957.
After working as a postman and factory worker while writing film reviews, Aki Kaurismäki co-directed his first film The Saimaa Gesture (1981), a feature-length documentary, with his brother Mika. He later adapted Crime and Punishment by Dostoyevsky in 1983 before directing his “working-class trilogy” comprising Shadows in Paradise (1986), Ariel (1988), and The Match Factory Girl (1990). In all of his works, he has focused on filming fringe groups because, as he says, “I don’t see the difference between relating the lives of ‘cursed’ artists and those of a dustman or factory girl.” In 1966, Drifting Clouds obtained the Ecumenical Jury Prize at Cannes. He returned in competition in 2002 with The Man Without a Past, which won the Grand Prix and the award for Best Actress. Le Havre (2011) and The Other Side of Hope (2017) were to follow, after which he declared he was taking his retirement.
The Saimaa Gesture, codirected with Mika Kaurismäki (1981) – Crime and Punishment (1983) – Calamari Union (1985) – Shadows in paradise (1986) – Hamlet Goes Business (1987) – Ariel (1988) – Dirty Hands (1989) - Leningrad Cowboys Go America (1989) – The Match Factory Girl (1990) – I Hired a Contract a Killer (1990) – La Vie de bohème (1992) – Take Care of your Scarf, Tatiana (1994) – Les Leningrad Cowboys Meet Moses (1994) – Total Balalaika Show (1994) – Drifting Clouds (1996) – Juha (1999) – The Man Without a Past (2002) – Lights in the Dusk (2006) – Le Havre (2011) – The Other Side of Hope (2017)