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Chris Valentien was born in Stuttgart. Growing up in an art dealer family with a strong visual background, he feeds his family by working as a director of photography on music videos, commercials and feature films. In 1992, he met his friend and partner Till Terror aka Schauder at the Munich Film School and a fruitful collaboration began. As a cameraman, Chris photographed several award winning films, among them Till Terror’s Strong Shit and City Bomber. While in film school he also directed several of his own short films, many of which earned him critical praise and awards. Santa Smokes marks his debut as a feature film director.