Emanuele Crialese (born 1965) is of Sicilian origin. In 1991 he moved to the USA to study Film Direction at New York University. After a number of short films his feature film debut was in 1997 with the multiple award-winning “Once We Were Strangers” shot in New York and in English. His first Italian feature “Respiro”, shot on the Sicilian island of Lampedusa in 2002, starred Vincenzo Amato and Valerio Golino. In 2006, he directed “Nuovomondo”, again starring Vincenzo Amato with Charlotte Gainsbour, which won the Silver Lion at the Venice Film Festival.