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Chris Di Staulo

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Name  Chris Staulo

Chris Di Staulo Chris Di Staulo Director

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Chris Di Staulo (born November 9, 1990) is an award-winning Canadian film director. He is known for his focused and intricate work with actors, beautiful cinematography and original narrative work. Di Staulo’s films are known for elements of magic realism (Sleepwalk) dreams (Somnolence), aberrant sexuality (Dirty Talk), and characters that deal with mental health issues. Common genres of his films are: drama, thriller, dark comedy, and fantasy. His unique vision and innovative style have won him awards at the Cannes International Film Festival, Canada International Film Festival, Las Vegas Film Festival, National Screen Institute, and many more. Di Staulo’s latest films, Dirty Talk and Somnolence were acquired and broadcast by CBC Television and ShortsTV (USA, Europe). He has established himself as one of the most exciting directors in the industry, and is currently developing two feature films in Los Angeles and Toronto.


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Early life

Chris was born in Toronto, Ontario to a make-up artist and a musician. His sister, Vanessa Di Staulo, is an international model. He fell in love with film at a young age, making short films with his family’s home video camera at 7-years old. He would often direct short films and one-act plays, in hopes of becoming a director like Sam Mendes, Charlie Kaufman or David Fincher. He attended the Drama program at Etobicoke School of the Arts, one of the top art high schools in Canada. Di Staulo later graduated from York University with a Bachelor of Arts degree (Specialized Honors) in Directing. At York University, he trained with some of North America’s top filmmakers. While working on his thesis production, Di Staulo’s professors allowed him creative freedom and space to grow and hone his skills in filmmaking. He has also studied directing at the Tarragon Theatre, and comedy at The Second City Training Center.


Chris Di Staulo directed and wrote the short fantasy/science fiction film Somnolence, which was selected out of thousands to be shown at the 2014 Cannes International Film Festival for the Cannes Court Métrage lineup. Di Staulo’s internationally acclaimed film talks about the future of the human race that have evolved to the point where sleep is no longer necessary. The film is a mixture between dreams, the haunted memories of grief, and how George Porter (played by Nick Smyth) copes in this world.

Di Staulo was one of the few Canadians who was selected to showcase their work at the Cannes International Film Festival in 2014. This was the year in which CBC notably commented on how Canadian filmmakers showcasing their work in 2014 is "an incredible vindication of our film culture".

Upon its premiere at the Cannes International Film Festival, Somnolence won many awards, and was picked up by distributors in less than 24 hours. Di Staulo’s film won Best Cinematography and Best Special Effects in a Short Film at the Hollywood & Vine Film Festival in LA, Award of Excellence at the Best Shorts Competition in San Diego; and a nomination for Best Original Score at the Hollywood Music in the Media Festival.

Other work

Prior to Somnolence’s release, Di Staulo worked on a variety of short films, including his most popular short film Dirty Talk. The film starred Jeremy Ferdman and Katie Strain. On February 14, 2015, Dirty Talk aired on CBC to celebrate Canadian filmmaker successes for the Canadian Reflections program on CBC Television.


  • 2015 – Budweiser: "Milk" – Director
  • 2015 – Lysol: "Terminator" – Director
  • 2015 – Starburst: "Magician" - Director
  • 2014 – Red Light Winter – Director
  • 2014 – Somnolence – Director
  • 2013 – Dirty Talk – Director
  • 2013 – Purina: "Furry Child" – Director
  • 2013 – Western Union: "Like Magic" – Director
  • 2012 – Sleepwalk – Director and Writer
  • References

    Chris Di Staulo Wikipedia