Maya Newell is an award-winning Australian filmmaker. She is best known for her acclaimed documentaries, including Gayby Baby (2015), In My Blood It Runs (2019), and her feature debut, Flatland (2021).
Newell was born in Sydney, Australia in 1989. Growing up, she was surrounded by media, which sparked her interest in filmmaking. At the age of 13, she wrote and directed her first short film, which was screened at numerous film festivals. Newell attended the University of Sydney for a degree in Media and Communications, where she fine-tuned her skills and developed her signature visual style.
In 2015, Newell released her debut documentary, Gayby Baby. The film follows the lives of four children and their same-sex parents, and explores the importance of family acceptance and inclusion. The film was a critical success, and earned numerous awards. In 2019, Newell released her second documentary, In My Blood It Runs. The film follows the story of Dujuan, an Indigenous Australian boy, as he navigates his two worlds – the traditional Aboriginal culture and the modern Western society. The film earned numerous awards, including the Special Jury Prize at the Tribeca Film Festival.
In 2021, Newell made her feature debut with Flatland. The film follows two teenage girls who discover a shared history and family legacy, and explore their identity and connection to each other. The film has earned critical acclaim, and was awarded the Grand Jury Prize for Best Narrative Feature at the 2021 SXSW Film Festival.
Maya Newell’s work has been recognised for its unique visual style and powerful storytelling. Her films explore themes of identity, family, and inclusion, and she has been praised for her ability to create meaningful connections with her audience. Newell’s work is an important contribution to the Australian film industry, and she is an inspiration for many aspiring filmmakers.