Anil Jacob Kunnel (*1984) is a German researcher, film writer and director. In his film work, he likes to address current social and political issues by using storytelling. He is interested in how humans connect and disconnect especially through technology, and how this shapes our world.

Born to South-Indian immigrants, Kunnel wrote his first screenplays when he was a teenager, but it was not until university that he shot and produced the feature-length anthology ‘Abschiede – Five Goodbyes’ ( for no real budget. It was followed by his first feature-length debut “Pixelschatten – Our Life is Online” ( ‘Pixelschatten’, a coming-of-age film about a group of friends who become occupied by their online presence, was released via ZDF in collaboration with YouTube and became an online phenomenon in Germany. Fittingly, it had its North American premiere at the Palo Alto International Filmfestival in Silicon Valley.
After developing his voice as a storyteller, Kunnel took a break from filmmaking when he was offered a fully financed PhD project by the German Science Foundation. Based on an interdisciplinary body of literature, the resulting thesis titled ‘Trust and Communication: Foundations of Interconnectivity’ offers a scientific, communication-based theory of why and how humans trust each other in digitalized environments.
Today, Kunnel has also returned to the filmmaking world. As Alumni of the Rutger Hauer Filmfactory Rotterdam and the Academy of Children’s Media Erfurt, he is staying true to the exploration of his core interests: At Jiwar, he was developing the film ‘Megalopolis’, which deals with the dark side of celebrity culture and what we perceive about public personas through the consumption of media.

In his spare time, Kunnel hosts the indie-film screening series ‘Alles Ausser Tatort’ ( together with the film club ‘Die Linse e.V.’ in Münster, Germany.