Multi-screen storyteller and award-winning director Umut Aral was born in Istanbul.
Globally experienced and multi-lingual, Aral managed multi national teams, established partnerships and worked across Europe and Asia. Most recently, Aral worked as the leading director of the Netflix Original "The Protector" for 4 successful consecutive seasons. The Protector became the 6th of most watched 'Non- English TV shows' in UK.
Throughout his career, Aral has demonstrated an affinity for breaking new ground across multiple screens. His wide body of work includes varied films, documentaries, TV commercials, music videos, TV series, viral videos, flash mobs, interactive videos, 360 and hologram videos.
In 1999, Umut Aral directed his first short film called 'Otuzdört / Thirtyfour'. The film won awards in national film festivals and screened in numerous international film festivals receiving his first global recognition.
In 2005, Aral directed, produced and wrote his second short film 'ÇARPIŞMA / CRASH'. Internationally acclaimed "Crash", won thirteen prestigious national and international awards and screened in esteemed film festivals like Locarno International Film Festival, Raindance Film Festival, Asiana Short Film Festival, and International Short Film Festival in Drama.
Since 2001, Aral has been leading a prolific career directing over 250 national and international TV commercials. Aral, has been distinguished with his cinematic flair on branded content and working in solid partnership with high-profile celebrities. Aral established himself as one of the top talented leading directors in the commercial world, winning numerous awards and being screened throughout the world with his work for clients such as Coca-Cola, Pepsi, Mercedes Benz, McDonald's, Nivea, Vodafone, Unilever, Nestle, Henkel, Emaar, Diageo, QNB and Nutricia among many others.
In 2017, directed an episode of the anthology series, 7Yüz for Turkey's 1# streaming platform: BluTV.
In 2018, Umut Aral has been thriving in his career with two ground breaking projects: Directed the first e-Sports feature film 'İyi Oyun / Good Game: The Beginning' and directed Turkey's first Netflix Series 'The Protector' which is released globally. 'Good Game' has won 9 international awards and screened in prestigious international film festivals such as Sarajevo Film Festival, Worldfest Houston International Film Festival and Beirut International Youth Film Festival.
In 2020, Aral shot 4 eps of Netflix's popular high school drama 'Love101'. Now he's working on a spin-off version of Netflix's well-known Belgian show 'Into The Night'.
Throughout his career, he has also been a speaker and educator, invited as a guest speaker to global organizations like YPO and by universities to run workshops on filmmaking.
Umut Aral is also The Chairman of Board of Members of Mithat Alam Education Foundation and Mithat Alam Film Center - the 'cinematheque' , a prestigious cultural center in Istanbul. The Center hosts world cinema icons like Sir Ian McKellen, Sean Connery and Gus Van Sant for private seminars and screenings.