Ary Zara is a transgender artist and activist, excelling in the roles of writer, director, and performer. He studied Cinema at Lusófona University in Lisbon, and his academic musical short won several awards. Thanks to a FCT scholarship, Ary continued to develop his skills in Writing for Narrative Production at the University of Texas in Austin and in 2014 sold his first script for a feature film to Ukbar.
His venture as a director begins with the short film An Avocado Pit starring Ivo Canelas (cisactor) and Gaya de Medeiros (trans actress) produced by Take it Easy. The film garnered numerous awards at esteemed festivals as Clermont-Ferrand, Indie Lisboa, AFI FEST, Brest European SFF, Regard, Kashish, Festival Internacional de Cine en Guadalajara and Outfest. Ary’s work has been recognized by the Portuguese Film Academy with the nomination of An Avocado Pit for best short film at the prestigious Sophia 2023 awards. Ary was also invited as a Jury member for the International short films section at Indie Lisboa 2023. Currently, Ary is engaged in developing his feature film at Torino Film Lab, while simultaneously working on his second short film, to be filmed in 2024 with Wonder Maria Filmes.
Ary is driven to create narratives that reflect new possibilities for LGBTQI+ people, using storytelling as a tool for social intervention, infused with a heartfelt approach that shines a spotlight on authentic experiences of trans individuals. Deeply involved in the LGBTQI+ community, Ary Zara works as the Creative Director of Queer Art Lab supporting other LGBTQI+ artists and as a performer in BRABA, a trans artist’s collective.
Ary strives to inspire a more inclusive society, leaving an indelible mark on both the art world and the hearts of those who experience their work.