Michelle Paymar


Cairo to the Cloud was produced, directed, and filmed by award-winning filmmaker, Michelle Paymar. Her independent work has screened at festivals around the world and she has extensive credits as a director and writer of documentary and non-fiction television programs for NBC, ABC, CBS, PBS, CBC, MTV, CTV, Travel, Discovery, History, and other major broadcasters.


Her production company, D-Facto Filmstudio, makes independent documentaries and promotional films for nonprofits and NGOs. Clients include Amnesty International (Canada), Alzheimer's Services of the East Bay (California), and the Ayubowan Women's Project (Sri Lanka). Earlier films include her pioneering AIDS documentary, For Our Lives, and Sippie, a documentary about classic blues artist Sippie Wallace.

She received a Master of Fine Arts degree in Film Directing from the American Film Institute and a B.A. from the University of California, Berkeley. Paymar is a member of the International Documentary Association and Women in Film.

Selected Awards & Honours

Two CINE Golden Eagle Awards

Columbus International Film Festival, Silver Chris Award

Chicago International Film Festival, Silver Hugo

US International Film & Video Festival, Gold Camera Award

Videographer, Award of Excellence

New York Film Festivals, Silver

Aurora Awards, Best of Show for Documentary

Berkeley Film Festival, Best of Festival for Documentary

Summit Creative Award, Gold

Worldfest International Film Festival, Silver & Bronze

Telly Award, Bronze

Davey Award, Silver

National Endownment for the Humanities Grantee