Until 2018, Melissa Azizi worked closely with critically acclaimed US Producer, Gail Mutrux to help produce Academy-Award winning THE DANISH GIRL, the Golden Globe winning SHOW ME A HERO mini-series (for HBO) and iBOY (UK’s first Netflix Original).
Melissa has since formed Sparkwood Films and has several feature projects in development, including an adaptation of the PEN/Faulkner nominated book, THREATS by Amelia Gray; a road trip dramedy about grief called SCATTERING JAKE with MXN Entertainment (TULLY, YOUNG ADULT, JUNO); a documentary about the first African-American rhythmic gymnast poised for 2020 Olympics called BREAKING BOUNDARIES; and a biopic on Elise Cowen, a beat poet whose legacy has long been defined by a colleague she dated briefly, Allen Ginsberg.
Melissa produced the short films, THE DISTANCE BETWEEN through Screen NSW’s Young Filmmakers Fund and SHOPPING, in association with Metro Screen and the Australian Cultural Fund. Both films have screened in over one hundred film festivals worldwide, including major gay and lesbian film festivals. They have both been nominated for City of Sydney and City of Melbourne awards and between them, collected Best Achievement in Sound for a Short Film at the 2009 Australian Screen Sound Guild Awards, nominated for an Australian Screen Music Award and collected Best Original Song for a Short Film at Long Island.
Melissa is on the judging panel for the scriptwriting contest, WeScreenplay; the programming panel for New Filmmakers LA, Outfest Los Angeles and NewFest NY; and is a mentor for the Young Storytellers Program, a non-profit that inspires low-income students to learn how to write original stories and see them brought to life on stage and film. Melissa is also an alumni mentor for students of the UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television.
Melissa earned a Bachelor of Arts Hons I (Performance Studies and Art History & Theory) at The University of Sydney followed by a Masters in Media Arts and Production at The University of Technology, Sydney. She also graduated from UCLA’s Professional Producing Program.
In 2019, Melissa co-founded the IN DREAMS fellowship which is designed to connect unrepresented Australian screenwriters with the Hollywood industry.
Melissa is Australian and based in Los Angeles.