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Michael Koch was born in 1982 in Lucerne/Switzerland. He studied at the Academy of Media Arts Cologne and also worked as an actor. During this time he made the following short films: WIR SIND DIR TREU (WE ARE THE FAITHFUL, 2005), BECKENRAND (2006) and POLAR (2008). All three films were very successful at international festivals and won numerous awards. POLAR received a Special Mention at the Berlin International Film Festival, the German Camera Award, as well as the German Short Film Award 2009. After his studies he worked as a director for the theater Kaserne Basel. Michael Koch celebrates the world premiere of his feature film debut MARIJA (2016) in the International Competition at the 69th Locarno Film Festival.