Ana Luisa Santos

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Ana Luisa Santos
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Ana Luisa Vieira dos Santos

(1985-07-03) July 3, 1985 (age 37)
Ourem, Portugal
Alma materPolytechnic Institute of Leiria
OccupationWildlife Filmmaker

Ana Luisa Santos (born 03 July 1985), is a pioneer in the wildlife film making industry as the first female Portuguese wildlife filmmaker publicly known[1][2].

She started her career working as a Civil Engineer and then worked in the Centre for Rapid and Sustainable Product Development [3][4] (CDRp) in Portugal. Santos also participated as a volunteer in the program European Voluntary Service in Turkey[5][6].

After moving to The Netherlands, Santos started her career as a wildlife filmmaker[2] working on multiple wildlife documentaries for Japan's public broadcaster NHK which included The Paternal Bond: Barbary Macaques (2015) in Morocco, [7][8]; Pyrenees Mountain (2017) in Spain[9] and the Japanese re-versioning of A Wild Fox Life (2019)[10] in The Netherlands.

In the Netherlands, Santos worked for the cinema wildlife films Holland: Natuur in de Delta (2015)[11] for which she co-filmed the closing sequences using the self built Ateles Films drone[12]; and Wild Amsterdam (2018)[13] in which she also featured in a scene with seagulls in Amsterdam.

Santos also worked on the BBC Natural World Jungle Animal Hospital (2015) and for her independent Ateles Films production, which was aired worldwide on Nat Geo WILD and Arte, called Return of the Spider Monkeys (2016) narrated by Hayley Atwell[14] that follows the life of an orphaned spider monkey called Infinity after she is released back into the jungle of Guatemala.

She directed and wrote A Wild Fox Life (2019) filmed in the Netherlands which is about the life cycle of a red fox family that lives in the Oostvaardersplassen nature reserve. It was premiered in France 5 (France Televisions)[15][16], NHK and ServusTV[17] (Terra Mater).

Santos, since 2014, works in the establishment of Ateles Films as a independent production wildlife company, which she co-owns together with her business partner, actively producing blue chip wildlife documentaries for the more diverse channels and countries around the globe.


She studied Civil Engineer (BSc) and Product Design Engineering (MsC.) in the Polytechnic Institute of Leiria (IPL) in Portugal[18].



  • (2015): The Paternal Bond: Barbary Macaques[19], Camera assistant, TV Documentary
  • (2015): Holland: Natuur in de Delta, Camera assistant, Cinema Film
  • (2016): Jungle Animal Hospital[20], Camera assistant, TV Series
  • (2016): Return of the Spider Monkeys, Co-Producer, TV Documentary
  • (2017): Mosquito, Camera assistant, TV Documentary
  • (2017): Pyrenees Mountain, Lammergeier, the bone crashers, soar up high above the mountains, Co-Producer/Cinematographer, TV Documentary
  • (2017): Darwin's amazing animals: Barbary Macaque, Camera assistant, TV Series
  • (2018): Wild Amsterdam (aka. De Wilde Stad), Herself/Camera assistant, Cinema Film
  • (2019): A Wild Fox Life, Director/Cinematographer, TV Documentary
  • (2020): Spider Monkey for Sale, Producer, Micro Movie
  • (2021): Wild Nature (in production), Director/Cinematographer, TV Documentary


  • (2017) Picture: De Kat in De Wilde Stad. Netherlands: EMS Films, Ignas van Schaick. ISBN 9789047625094
  • (2012) Conference Paper No. ESDA2012-82764: “Engineering Systems Design and Analysis”, France. ISBN 978-0-7918-4487-8
  • (2011) Book Cover: Proceedings of SIM 2011: International Conference on Sustainable Intelligent Manufacturing. Portugal: IST Press. ISBN 978-0-7918-4487-8
  • (2011) Conference Paper: “A Ecodesign Tool for Sustainable manufacturing”. Portugal: IST Press. ISBN 978-989-8481-03-0
  • (2008) Mention: Alburitel – A Terra e o Povo. Portugal. David Simoes Rodrigues. ISBN 972-95519-1-X

In the media



  1. "Het moet zo groots en episch mogelijk". De Volkskrant. 29 December 2016.
  2. 2.0 2.1 "Sanderson tussen de slingerapen". Algemeen Dagblad. 4 May 2017.
  3. "Criatividade: Na Marinha Grande, todos os dias há um novo futuro". Região de Leiria. 3 July 2012.
  4. "#284 Revista Forum Estudante - Março 2016". Issuu, Inc.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  5. "Genclik Haftasi kutlamalari basladi". Devrim Gazetesi. 16 May 2013.
  6. "20 ulkeye zeybek ogretiyorlar". Hamble. 31 May 2013.
  7. "The Paternal Bond: Barbary Macaques (2015)". Retrieved 13 April 2021.
  8. "Macaque de barbarie: La force du lien (2017)". Retrieved 13 April 2021.
  9. "El pirineo aragones y el quebrantahuesos en la television japonesa". El Periodico de Aragon. 9 August 2017.
  10. "朝日新聞デジタル". Asahi Shimbun. 1 July 2019.
  11. "Holland: the living delta (2015)". Retrieved 13 April 2021.
  12. "Feature and Planning Michael J. Sanderson The Pioneer Drone Cinematographer". Photoworld. February 2018.
  13. "fotosmulders". 26 February 2018.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  14. "Hayley Atwell". Retrieved 13 April 2021.
  15. "Une vie de renarde FRANCE 5 - 26 decembre 2019". Le Parisien.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  16. "Une vie de renarde". Le Figaro.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  17. "Terra Mater: Füchse – Eine wilde Geschichte". Kurier. 9 September 2020.
  18. "Educacao - Testemunhos". Correio da Manha. 5 March 2016.
  19. "The Paternal Bond: Barbary Macaque". NHK Enterprises. Retrieved 13 April 2021.
  20. "Jungle Animal Hospital". BBC Two. Retrieved 13 April 2021.

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