Actress-writer-director Sarah Polley’s diverse career has taken her from child star in her native Canada to an acclaimed filmmaker and performer, whose refusal to conform to Hollywood conventions has allowed her a creative freedom enjoyed by few of her contemporaries. Polley began acting at an early age, but a traumatic acting experience coupled with a growing disillusionment with the industry led a teenage Polley to reconsider her chosen profession during the early 1990s. She returned to deliver an emotionally devastating performance in Atom Egoyan’s heartrending drama The Sweet Hereafter (1997) but continued to cultivate her growing interest in directing.
Her debut feature came in 2006 with Away from Her, an adaptation of Alice Munro’s short story “The Bear Came Over the Mountain” from the collection Hateship, Friendship, Courtship, Loveship, Marriage. The film garnered widespread critical acclaim along with an Oscar nomination for Best Actress for Julie Christie. Although she still continued to act in several projects, Polley continued to grow as a writer-director with her second feature Take This Waltz (2011), starring Michelle Williams and Seth Rogen, and Stories We Tell (2012), an inventive documentary about her own childhood.