Betsy Tsai grew up mostly in Silicon Valley, California, and for some years in Brussels, Belgium. She is a directing alumna from the UCLA School of Theater, Film, & Television, and she also studied English Literature and International Conflict Resolution.
Betsy works now as a director, producer, and writer, based in Los Angeles. She is a co-producer with Walking Iris Media, and often serves as a film festival juror, panelist, and story consultant for documentary films.
She was a staff member of the Documentary Film Program at Sundance Institute from 2015-2020.
Emigration runs in her family. She speaks French adequately and Mandarin horridly. She enjoys exploring the inherent malfunctions of human communication and her own cultural dysphoria.
Betsy produced CONFUCIAN DREAM (Special Jury Prize, Karlovy Vary 2019) and her co-producing credits include Emmy nominee OUR TIME MACHINE (Best Cinematography, Tribeca 2019), HIDDEN LETTERS (Tribeca 2022) and AFTER THE RAIN (Special Jury Award, Doc NYC 2021). From 2015-2020, she was a staff member of the Documentary Film Program at Sundance Institute, where she provided managerial and curatorial support for the Sundance Labs and the Sundance Documentary Fund, which awards over $1.5 million in grants to feature documentaries globally.
Prior to Sundance, Betsy worked at The Olive Tree Initiative, an education non-profit that provides experiential learning for conflict resolution students studying the Middle East and the South Caucasus. She has directed award-winning scripted and documentary short films, and her feature screenplay, GREEN ISLAND SERENADE, was selected for the Nostos Screenwriting Workshop and is a Los Angeles Chinese Film Festival Screenwriting Competition finalist.
Betsy often travels to Belfast, Northern Ireland, where she is developing her first hybrid film.