An award-winning filmmaker and writer, Zan studied at Bournemouth College of Art and Edinburgh University. Her baptism of fire in the workplace was to help launch the UK's first local terrestrial TV station (the Oxford Channel). She was trained on Tony Blair's New Deal, made films in war zones and for charities and has a strong visual sense, combined with an ability to put people at ease in front of the camera.
Zan is interested in themes of stigma and belonging, likes to share authorship with her subjects, and was one of the first filmmakers to work in a participatory way with children and vulnerable groups. She set up a multidisciplinary filmmaking project in Palestine in 2006, making the award-winning "Child of Bethlehem". She has made many films about mental health, and has worked extensively with young people, producing and directing projects in the UK, Palestine, Kosovo, Nigeria and Brazil.
Recently Zan has produced a short for the BFI queer strand "Films for Freedom", made a groundbreaking animation short with young people who have self-harmed and written and directed 2 sets of award-winning educational shorts. She has also written several short fiction scripts. She is working on a feature doc about climate change.
We live in capitalism, its power seems inescapable – but then, so did the divine right of kings. Any human power can be resisted and changed by human beings. Resistance and change often begin in art. Very often in our art, the art of words. - Ursula K. Le Guin