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FERNANDO MEIRELLES was born in São Paulo, Brazil, and graduated with a degree in Architecture from São Paulo University. He began to achieve recognition in the film industry when he began to make experimental videos whilst still a student.

In the beginning of the 1980's, he and Paulo Morelli formed the production company Olhar Eletrônico (Electronic Look) with some friends, which creatively went on to provide a much needed breath of fresh air to Brazilian television during the rest of the decade. The group spent 10 years producing a series of TV programs for various networks, including Antenas, 23a Hora, Crig Rá!, and O Mundo No Ar amongst others, but principally for TV Mix, which launched a new generation of TV presenters and directors in Brazil. From television they moved to advertising and with the departure of several partners, the independent production company turned into O2 Filmes under the command of partners Fernando Meirelles, Paulo Morelli and Andrea Barata Ribeiro. O2 Filmes is considered today to be one of the most creative and important Brazilian production companies in the world market, making independent productions and co-productions with large international studios and television networks.

In 1997, Meirelles had his first feature film experience co-directing the children's project The Wacky Wacky Boy with Fabrizia Pinto. In 2000 he shot the feature Maids, co-directed with Nando Olival. After that came City of God, a film which won more than 52 awards around the world and received four Academy Award® nominations including for Best Director. He followed this with the critically acclaimed and multi-award winning, The Constant Gardener, an adaptation of John le Carré's novel starring Ralph Fiennes and Rachel Weisz, which received four Academy Award® nominations, and for which Weisz received the Academy Award® for Best Supporting Actress as well as a Screen Actors Guild and Golden Globe awards, plus numerous other plaudits, and for which Meirelles was awarded a Golden Globe for Best Director. The film went on to receive a BAFTA for Best Editing, in addition to nine other BAFTA nominations, plus London Critics Film Circle Awards, British Independent Film Awards, Evening Standard Film Awards and European Film Award nominations.

Meirelles then directed Blindness, a film based on the novel by José Saramago, starring Julianne Moore and Mark Ruffalo, which premiered at the Toronto Film Festival.


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