Markus Schleinzer was born in Vienna (Austria) in 1971. From 1994 to 2010 he worked as a casting director, and was engaged in the production of about seventy feature films, including several films of Jessica Hausner, Ulrich Seidl and Michael Haneke. In 2008 working on the cast of Haneke's "The White Ribbon" he was also given the chance to train the child-actors, to prepare the scenes with them and to work with them on set in front of the camera. Out of this experience he decided to try his own luck as a filmmaker. "Michael", his provocative feature film debut as director and scriptwriter premiered in the Competition at the Cannes Film Festival in 2011, and has been sold to numerous territories and received plenty of nominations and awards at festivals around the globe. Schleinzer is also working as an actor himself, theatre and film. Especially his performances in The Robber by Benjamin Heisenberg and One of Us by Stephan Richter were praised by the critics.