Jenni Toivoniemi

“I love drama and comedy in many forms, but my biggest love is film. I want to work with inspiring people to make distinctive, original films for international audiences. I believe in the collaborative nature of filmmaking and I flourish in working-partnerships.“

Jenni Toivoniemi is an award-winning writer-director based in Helsinki. She is one of the four founders of the film production company Tuffi Films Lts., member of the Finnish Film Directors Association, and Vice President of the Finnish Playwrights and Screenwriters Guild.

After attending Screenwriting and film production courses in Lapland, Film Studies in Ireland, Common literature and Theater Studies in Helsinki, Jenni attended a one-year scriptwriting course organised by the National Broadcasting Company YLE. Since 2009, Jenni is enrolled in a MA programme in Film- and TV scriptwriting and directing in Helsinki.

Her latest short film THE COMMITTEE premiered at this year’s Locarno Film Festival. It is both a hilarious and thoughtful satire (or is it just very true-to-life?) about three delegates from Sweden, Norway, and Finland, who are gathered in Lapland to decide which piece of art should be placed at the border of their countries.

Jenni’s short film THE DATE, a marvellous comedy about 16-year old Tino who has to host a date for Diablo, the family’s stud cat, won several awards including International Short Film Jury Award in Sundance Film Festival in 2013 and a Special Mention at the Berlinale Generation. The same year, Jenni was named Screenwriter of the Year by the Finnish Screenwriters Guild.

In 2014, KORSO, a feature film she has co-written with Kirsikka Saari (directed by Akseli Tuomivaara) premiered in Finnland.

Jenni is currently writing her first feature SOCIAL GAME (as a writer-director) which received a MEDIA Slate funding for development. It’s a bittersweet ensemble comedy about a group of 30-something friends who gather in a summer villa to celebrate an unwanted surprise birthday party. Trapped in nostalgia, things take a more paranoid turn rather quickly.

Jenni strives for the combination of strong characters (often on the edge), painfully raw humor with a heart and an element of danger. But the most important aspect for her is the urgency: the feeling that THIS had to be expressed.

THE DATE will participate in this year's ZFF MASTER CLASS screenings.

Writer, Director (FI)

2016 THE COMMITTEE (Short Fiction)
2014 KORSO (Writer, Feature Fiction)
2013 BOYFRIEND (Short Fiction)
2012 THE DATE (Short Fiction)