Jochen Alexander Freydank was born in 1967 in East Berlin. He started his career in the early 90s as an editor and assistant director for various television and film productions. In 1999, after five rejections from film schools in Berlin and Potsdam, he decided to set up his own film production company, Mephisto Film. His first short film was the macabre comedy HAPPY END, followed by the short film EMERGENCY. In 2002, he made the satiric short film DUTY, which had its world premiere at the Montreal World Film Festival and was subsequently shown at more than 40 other international festivals. Freydank then directed, co-wrote and produced the short film TOYLAND, which was screened around the world at numerous film festivals and won more than 30 international awards. In February 2009, TOYLAND won the Oscar® for Best Live-Action Short Film. Parallel to his work as a short film director, Freydank also wrote screenplays for several TV movies and series, and directed commercials, stage plays and two TV movies. KAFKA'S THE BURROW is his feature film debut.