2023 Chicken & Egg Award Recipient



Ilinca Calugareanu looking directly at the camera, smiling. She is wearing glasses and her hands cover her mouth. Black and white portraitIlinca Calugareanu (she/her) is a UK-based Romanian filmmaker with a background in Anthropology. Blending absurd and playful tones, her films are a mix of fiction and documentary. Her debut documentary feature, Chuck Norris vs Communism, premiered at Sundance Film Festival 2015 and went on to play in cinemas and festivals around the world. Other of her titles include the feature documentary A Cops and Robbers Story (Doc NYC 2020, Hulu) and short documentaries, VHS vs. Communism (2014 Op-Docs- The New York Times), Erica: Man Made (Sheffield DocFest 2017, Guardian Documentaries) and The Joys and Sorrows of Young Yuguo (Sheffield DocFest 2022, Netflix).

She is a Berlinale Talents Alumna (2017), Chicken & Egg Pictures (Egg)celerator Lab Grantee (2018),  Sundance Institute’s National Geographic Fellow (2108), Sundance Institute Music and Sound Design Lab Fellow (2019), and SFFILM Rainin Screenwriting Grantee (2020).

Ilinca is one of the founders of Vernon Films, established with producer and sister Mara Adina in 2011. Vernon Films focuses on pushing the boundaries of documentary filmmaking and collaborating with creative voices who seek to devise new ways of arriving at stories.


Celluloid Dreams is a 5 episode anthology series that reveals the power of movies beyond the multiplexes of the Western world, illustrating how across different cultures, political regimes, and historical contexts, films are our common denominator. Films help us dream, escape and understand the world differently, they affect us, transform us and sometimes make us change the world.