Film director, composer, singer, actress, scriptwriter, camerawoman, and performer...
Leila is born in Auvergne in France from a French mother and an Iraqi father. She studied violin alto and opera at the conservatory of Bordeaux, 3 years of architecture and has a DEUG cinema from Paris 8. She moved to Belgium to study at the film school IAD. She stopped her studies and became autodidact. She's working between Belgium, France, Germany and Egypt.
She plays in her own films and composes the music of them.
Her first short film Vu (2009), 25', received a Special Mention of the Jury at the Berlinale 2009 and went at around 15 international film festivals.
Her first feature, Berlin Telegram (2012), 80', appeared at world premiere at Indielisboa, Arab premiere at the Dubai Festival, and then at around 20 international film festivals: Mar del Plata, Cinemania ... It received the TV5 Award for Best Francophone Film in Geneva Tous Ecrans and the best cinematography at Achtung Berlin.
Her latest film Face B (2015), 40 ', a documentary-fiction, had its world premiere at the 2015 Berlinale Forum Expanded.
She's working on a new film "My father's name is Abdul", a feature documentary.
This new film was selected in Dubai Connexion as best Arabic talent and in Cinelink work in progress in Sarajevo august 2019.
"My father’s name is Abdul" portrays an encounter between Western and Arab cultures via the story of a French-Iraqi family. The film witnesses the fractures of an exiled family who, in spite of everything, still believes in hope and freedom.
She has recorded two albums, "Dans le soleil" and "Berlin Telegram Record". In the intimacy of her bedroom, then she started to compose and create delicate melodies. Her voice is filled with emotions and expresses her “lunatic, enigmatic, and fantastic” personality.
As a musician, she has been performing shows around Europe and Middle East and has recording films’ soundtracks.
She plays different instruments, composes and sings in French, English and German. She recently learned Arabic and now composes her new music with Arabic lyrics and sonorities. She is interested in a fusion of sound between different cultures and identities and plays with different artists between Brussels, Berlin and Cairo.
Leila Albayaty presents From a Palm Tree to the Stars as a multimedia performance. She is developing a multi-faceted story of migration and its influence on cultural identity, while at the same time portraying her own journey between Arab and Western culture.
« Leila Albayaty is the kind of deeply personal filmmaker that wears its Gallic sensibility with the cool nonchalance of a gamine sporting a beret. She writes, plays, composes and directs her films, the kind of deeply personal cinema that carries her sensibility into a reality that is so closely tied to fiction that it's impossible to distinguish re-creation from invention, because the multi-hyphen shows its emotional trajectory » VARIETY January 2013 / By Jay Weissberg