Michael Lew



  • Director

Program Years

  • Directing Lab 2006


Michael Lew is an award-winning new media artist and filmmaker, with backgrounds in engineering (electronics, computer, signal processing, networks, artificial intelligence, interactive narrative, live video processing) and the arts (acting, filmmaking, performance, music). He currently lives in Los Angeles where he is a Visiting Artist at the USC School of Cinema-Television. From 2001-2004, he was a Research Fellow at the MIT Media Lab Europe in Dublin, Ireland where he developed technologies, prototypes and art installations on the future of cinema. He regularly publishes, lectures and teaches workshops internationally on computational film. Michael also works as a consultant on visionary technologies for film, performance, video game and architecture. His recents clients include : actress/director Marie Brassard, Montreal; dancer/choreographer M Coquempot, Paris; theatre company Wooster Group, New York; British director Peter Greenaway, Amsterdam; Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), Los Angeles. Since 2005, Michael has been a mentor at the American Film Institute Digital Content Lab. In 2004-2005, he was an Adjunct Professor at the USC school of cinema-television interactive media division, where he inaugurated a graduate class on computational filmmaking. Michael's interactive film installation and live experimental video have been shown in electronic art festivals across Europe and the US. In 2003, he was granted the New Media Award from the Montreal Festival of New Cinema and New Media for breaking new grounds in non-linear filmmaking. Michael obtained his M.Sc. in Electrical Engineering from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (EPFL). In 1999, he was a visiting researcher at the AI Lab, Motorola Labs in Paris, France, after which he was awarded the Logitech 2000 prize for his research on software agents. In 1997, he was a visiting researcher at the Technion Institute of Technology, Haifa, Israel, working on novel architectures for MPEG-2 video streaming. Michael is also credited with co-founding the Avracavabrac theatre company in Lausanne and for starting the Dublin Cafe Philosophique, which brought together people from different backgrounds to discuss philosophical topics.

Current Project

Junkyard of Dreams (Narrative Feature)


An improvised film-performance about Hollywood, a contemporary portrait of the city seen through the eyes of a French urban anthropologist and a young immigrant from El Salvador.