Kalyanee Mam

Kalyanee Mam's picture

Award-winning filmmaker, lawyer and born storyteller, Kalyanee Mam is committed to combining her passion for art and advocacy to tell compelling and universal stories. Born in Battambang, Cambodia during the Khmer Rouge regime, she and her family fled to the refugee camps at the Thai-Cambodian border and eventually immigrated to the United States in 1981.

For her debut documentary feature, A River Changes Course (2013), Mam returned to her native homeland to document the struggles of three families to maintain their traditional way of life as the modern world closes in around them. The film earned several top awards, including the World Cinema Grand Jury Prize for Documentary at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival and the Golden Gate Award for Best Feature Documentary at the San Francisco International Film Festival. The New York Times considered the film, “profound enough to stand on its own,” while the Los Angeles Times described the film as, "a deeply felt portrait of Cambodia...exquisite in its immediacy and agility."

Mam has also worked as cinematographer, associate producer and researcher on the 2011 Oscar-winning documentary Inside Job, about the global financial crisis, and as co-director and co-producer of documentary short, Between Earth & Sky (2010), about three young Iraqi refugee artists living in Syria, Jordan and Egypt. A graduate of Yale University and UCLA Law School, Mam has also served as a legal consultant in Mozambique and Iraq.