The Danish director and producer Nicolas Winding Refn began his movie career at a young age with his first short film adapted into a full-length feature at the age of 26. After receiving critical acclaim for this debut feature, Pusher, he was signed on to direct the following two installments in this trilogy, which became a cult classic in the genre. A prolific filmmaker, during this time he also directed Bleeder in 1999, starring his compatriot, the cult actor Mads Mikkelsen, followed by Inside Job in 2003, his first film shot in English, which was not a commercial success despite being hailed by the critics. He returned to the limelight in 2007 with the extremely violent Bronson, which recounts the life of Britain’s most dangerous detainee and revealed the talents of the actor Tom Hardy. He then launched into his most ambitious project to date, Valhalla Rising, a historical epic set in the days of the Vikings, also starring Mads Mikkelsen. This film, structured as a rite of passage, continues to explore the filmmaker’s pet themes, such as the subject of violence. This was quickly followed by his biggest commercial hit to date, Drive. He gained wide popular recognition with this film, which was presented in the Official Competition at Cannes in 2011 and won the Best Direction award. It also brought international recognition to the actor Ryan Gosling, with whom he collaborated two years later on the highly violent Only God Forgives (also presented at Cannes), which co-stars Kristen Scott Thomas. Nicolas Winding Refn has developed a filmmaking style that stands out as singular and hypnotic, with a strong capacity to stimulate the imagination. After serving on Jane Campion’s jury at Cannes in 2014, he is set to release his latest film, The Neon Demon, in 2015, featuring Elle Fanning and Keanu Reeves.