Kutlug Ataman was born in Istanbul and studied at film schools in Paris and Los Angeles where he graduated with the short La Fuga. He then directed his first full-length feature Serpent's Tale which won prizes at several international film festivals. Ataman then returned to Istanbul again and has become one of the leading lights in the Turkish gay liberation movement. His weekly column in the newspaper Gazete Pazar is an important outlet for the gay community. At the Biennale in Istanbul, Ataman presented a documentary on Semia Berksoy, the first Turkish opera singer who trained in Berlin in the 1930s. Ataman shot Lola + Bilidikid on location in Berlin in winter 1997.