Age: 31
Notable films: An Oversimplification of Her Beauty (2013)

Terence Nance's debut should be simple given its title, and in the hands of a less ambitious director, surely this small boy-meets-girl-but-its-complicated romance would be. Born in Dallas, Texas, Nance is a visual artist first, and its his background in this medium that explodes An Oversimplification of Her Beauty into something breathtaking and special. Effortlessly the film blends animation and live action to tell the maybe fictional, maybe true tale of how Nance fell for a young woman named Namik Minter. They play themselves, or versions of themselves that try to unpack falling for someone, how we perceive others in the midst of love.

Heady, beautiful, and one-of-a-kind, An Oversimplification of Her Beauty won the Gotham Award for “Best Film Not Playing at a Theater Near You.” Nance's next project is a film called The Lobbyist. It can't happen fast enough. —RS