One of the Netherlands's best-known filmmakers and an important, often provocative voice in world cinema, writer and director Marleen Gorris is renowned -- and, in some circles, reviled -- for making unapologetically feminist films that assert the rights of women as they question the patriarchy that often represses them. Gorris earned particular international recognition for Antonia's Line, a portrait of several generations of Dutch women that won a 1995 Academy Award for Best Foreign Film.
Born in Holland's Limburg region in 1948, Gorris studied drama at home and abroad. She began working as a filmmaker with almost no previous experience in the cinema and made an auspicious writing and directorial debut in 1982 with De Stilte Rond Christine M (A Question of Silence). A story about three unacquainted women who murder a randomly chosen man, the film was hailed by some as a logical case study of what happens when women are driven to the brink by a male-dominated society, while others decried it as a juvenile revenge fantasy. Gorris was honored in her homeland with the Netherlands' Golden Calf Award and earned a reputation as a subversive new filmmaker.