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William Is one of Russian poet Valentin Papadin's eight children. He began writing at 9 years old as a way to express himself during a tumultuous, bohemian upbringing but became truly inspired when he learned the girl he was in love with liked his poems.

He started making short films when he was 21 while studying screenwriting and directing at San Francisco State University. Before his father died he told William: “We are not funny when we try to be funny, we are funny when we are dead serious.” Shortly after, William tore up his last three scripts and made sans réponse.

B.A. in Cinema at San Francisco State University 2016