Diana Sanchez is the Senior Director, Film, at TIFF, overseeing the programming strategy for the Toronto International Film Festival and TIFF Cinematheque. During the Toronto International Film Festival, Sanchez is also the Lead Programmer for Special Presentations, as well as the programmer for Spain, Latin America, Portugal and the Caribbean. In the past this included co-programming the City to City programme at the 2011 Festival, which highlighted the cinema of Buenos Aires. One year after joining the Festival in 2002, Sanchez programmed the national-cinema spotlight Vida de Novo: The New Brazilian Cinema. She subsequently programmed two surveys of Argentine cinema for TIFF Cinematheque in 2004 and 2006. Also in 2006, she programmed a week of Cuban cinema at the Royal Ontario Museum.
Previously, Sanchez served as founding Artistic Director for the International Film Festival of Panama, where she created Primera Mirada, a post-production competition that awards funding to films from Central America and the Caribbean. She is a programme advisor for LALIFF (Los Angeles Latino Film Festival) and programmed Houston Latin Wave with the PROA Foundation in Argentina and the Museum of Fine Arts Houston. Sanchez previously served as a programme consultant for the Miami International Film Festival, where she co-created the Encuentros programme, an initiative that helps fund films in post-production. In 2008, she was on the first Primera Copia jury at the Havana Film Festival and was again part of the jury in 2013 and 2017. She has also been a jury member for the script development fund at the Colombian Ministry of Culture and participated as part of the jury for the Ecuadorian Ministry of Culture, allocating funds for films in development and post-production, as well as educational initiatives. In 2017 she participated in Uruguay’s National Film Fund as jury for Feature Film production. Sanchez is a sessional instructor at the University of Toronto and most recently taught an undergraduate course called Global Screen Worlds at the University. She also holds a master’s degree from the Cinema Studies Institute at University of Toronto.