Born and raised in North Carolina, Ramin Bahrani is a writer and director whose first feature film, Man Push Cart (2005) won over 10 international prizes and was nominated for three Independent Spirit Awards, including best first film. In 2007 his film Chop Shop premiered at the Cannes Film Festival and then screened at Toronto and Berlin. The film won the Acura "Someone to Watch" Independent Spirit Award in 2008, and in 2009 was nominated for two Independent Spirit Awards, including best director. Roger Ebert listed Chop Shop on his best 10 of the decade list and proclaimed Bahrani as “the director of the decade.”
In 2008, Bahrani’s third film, Goodbye Solo, was an official selection of the Venice Film Festival and won the FIPRESCI international critics prize for best film. Called a “near-masterpiece” by A.O. Scott of The New York Times, the film was on countless top 10 lists in 2009 and was nominated for a Gotham Award and an Independent Spirit Award in 2010.
Bahrani’s latest film, a short subject titled Plastic Bag (2009), premiered at the Venice Film Festival, where Bahrani was also on the jury for best first films. The film features the voice of legendary filmmaker Werner Herzog and an original score from Kjartan Sveinsson of Sigur Rós. In early 2009, Bahrani received a Guggenheim Fellowship and was the subject of several international retrospectives, at the MoMA in New York City, Harvard University, and the La Rochelle Film Festival in France. Bahrani is currently preparing his new film, a period Western to be shot in late 2010.