After receiving his B.A. in Film Production from Loyola Marymount University, Paul Donatelli served in Bangladesh as a Peace Corps volunteer for two years. While there, he taught English and produced two documentaries for local development organizations as well as one for the Peace Corps program. One of these films, entitled Amra: Child Labor in Bangladesh, was shown in several European countries and at a worldwide Peace Corps conference in the Philippines.
He has also worked in rural Africa managing mobile camps and at a Bay Area non-profit coordinating foreign exchange student programs.
He graduated from Stanford University in 2012 with an M.F.A. in Documentary Film and Video. While there, he made five short films, two of those being collaborations with classmates. Collectively, the films have screened at many film festivals around the country, including the Ashland Independent Film Festival, Aspen ShortsFest, Silverdocs, and the Seattle International Film Festival.
He has worked as a freelance producer, shooter, and editor and is currently a Senior Video Editor at Al-Jazeera's digital channel, AJ+, in San Francisco. He edits short documentaries for them, one of which (The Execution Beat) won a Northern California Regional Emmy in 2017 for Best Topical Documentary.