Anna Maria Cianciulli: Award winning Director, Actor & Producer

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Anna Maria Cianciulli is an award winning Director, Actor and Producer in New York. Most recently she has produced, co-written, and coached the actors on set of "Life After Her," a 30 minutes film shot in New York, winner of the Platinum Award at the NYC Indie Film Awards 2017. The film has been selected by the Short Corner of the Cannes Film Festival (May 2017) and has also received an Honorable Mention from the Rochester International Film Festival. It has screened at the Grove Film Festival, at the New Hope Film Festival, and in July 2017, at the Madrid International Film Festival where it received a nomination for Best Original Screenplay and Best Actress in a Lead Role. Anna Maria’s film, "Stay" has been included in the Official Selections of the Manhattan Film Festival, the Central Florida Film Festival, The NewFilmmakers New York, and has received a Special Mention from the Ouchy Film Awards Winter 2016. She has received a Nomination for Best Actress from the International Festival of Cinema and Technology, and in 2015 she played a principal role in Stealing Chanel, a feature distributed by Lifetime Network. She was honored by Sanford Meisner with the exclusive rights to edit the Italian edition of "Sanford Meisner On Acting" - "La recitazione" – first edition published in 2007.

Her work as Director and Actor has been seen at: The Kitchen - for a BAM Event; Vanderbilt Hall of Grand Central Station; Joyce Soho; St. Peter's Church; American Museum of Natural History; Theater for the New City; Access Theater; The Players Club. Collaborations staged with Domenica Cameron-Scorsese; Kevin Bacon and Michael Bacon; Susan Batson, Brian Dennehy, and Roberto Benigni. As a Theater Director, her work has been daring and experimental.She has Co-Produced "Tribeca in Rome" - a cultural partnership between the Tribeca Film Festival and the Rome Film Festival’s first edition- including the Steps and Stars Award received by Robert De Niro. She has also produced Discovering the New Italian Cinema - a film festival presented at the Quad Cinema. As an Acting Coach, Anna Maria consulted with Domenica Cameron-Scorsese, Alessandra Mastronardi, Kick Kennedy, and Santigold. She was the on-set Acting Coach of "Yelo," a short film directed by Adrien Boublil (Cannes 2013.) She is a member of the senior faculty of The Acting Studio New York, Inc. and of the New York Film Academy.

What do I do best?

I am sensitive to people’s pain, and I do well with understanding emotions and behavior. This is crucial to my work as a whole, of course. I am a good observer, I see minor details, and I have been told many times that I can dig thru the layers of circumstances, contradictions, conflicts, and vulnerabilities, but humbly. I am interested in getting to a place where differences can be reconciled, and the best of human spirit- possibly, celebrated. I am a hard worker, I keep my promises, I can focus, organize, and I never compromise on giving my best. Being honorable is also very important to me, and making sure there is always love in the path…

What makes me the best version of myself?

When I know that my actions result from ethics and choices that are true to myself as much as they take into account the needs of all involved. When I don’t make assumptions or judgments. When I live in the present moment. When I am able to have an open heart, and preserve a level of innocence regardless of what others feel or think. When I am aware that I don’t have to prove anything to anyone.

What are my aspirations?

Thru art… serving humanity, fostering introspection, transformations, equality, intimate connection, and trying to capture a reflection of our world today. Making art that gives joy to many, and elevates human consciousness. Honoring what gives meaning to my life, and my vision of a better world for all of us. Provide documents for our future generations to understand what lived inside many of us. Have an opportunity to keep exploring the fundamental themes of my work… Truth, peace, existence, death, but also irony…  Sense of humor is crucial indeed!

My Biggest Success?

Success to me is about how connected I feel with life. Professionally, editing the Italian edition of legendary acting teacher Sanford Meisner’s classic book On Acting was amazing. As an actor, playing a principal role in the feature Stealing Chanel was a dream come thru. As a Director, I cherish every single project I have brought to life: they are my children.

My Most Challenging Moment?

Coming back to New York in my late twenties after a long break and loosing my father. Moving seven times in two years, building myself from scratch, and learning how to be there for myself, no matter what.

My Motto?

I tend to have more than one… Right now I love “A bird doesn’t sing because it has answers it sings because it has a song” by Maya Angelou.

My Favorite People/Role Model?

Animal Rescuers, planet and peacekeepers. All the great prophets. The meek and unprivileged. Thich Nhat Hanh, Gandhi, Einstein, Leonardo Da Vinci, to name a few.

My Favorite Places/Destinations?

I love nature, the ocean, the sun, nature sounds, beautiful music, and conscious people. Wherever there is little pretentiousness and more humanity.

My favorite Products/Objects?

I have a passion for all sorts of containers, silky materials, and genuine stones in general. I love antiques. They make me wonder about the time passing, and the stories behind them. I lean towards minimalism, lots of veggies, and good products for skin.

My current passions?

My new film project called “A Child Dream of Peace,” where I combine narrative and poetry. I have had this idea in mind for years, and I need to bring it to life. I am passionate about empowering and moving people's heart, whether I am directing, acting, or in a class… Namaste!