As a member of the second generation of New Romanian Cinema, he is one of the country’s most prolific and important directors who is known for often pushing the conventions of cinema, and engaging in experimentation, innovation and black humour in his films.

Described by Film Comment’s Jonathan Romney as “one of the most intriguing stylistic experimenters in contemporary Euro-fiction,” he was born in Bucharest, Romania in 1977. He graduated from the film department of the Media University in Bucharest. He began his career as an assistant director. He made his first short, Lampa cu caciula / The Tube with the Hat in 2006, which went on to win more than 50 international awards including best short film in Sundance. His feature debut, The Happiest Girl in the World (2009) was screened at numerous international film festivals and garnered worldwide attention. He won the Silver Bear for Best Director at the 2015 Berlin Film Festival with Aferim! In 2016, he made his debut as a theatre director with a stage adaptation of Ingmar Bergman’s Scenes from a Marriage. In 2016 Inimi cicatrizate / Scarred Hearts received two awards at the Locarno International Film Festival and brought him the best director award at the Mar del Plata Film Festival. In 2018, he received the Crystal Globe Award at the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival with Δmi este indiferent dacă în istorie vom intra ca barbari / I Do Not Care If We Go Down in History as Barbarians which was the first Romanian feature to receive this prize. In 2020, he had two films premiering at the Forum section of the Berlin Film Festival: Tipografic majuscul / Uppercase Print and Ieșirea trenurilor din gară / The Exit of the Trains. His ninth feature, Babardeală cu bucluc sau porno balamuc / Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn won the Golden Bear at the 2021 Berlin Film Festival.