Apolline Traoré was born in 1976 in Burkina Faso. She studied film at Emerson College in Boston. Her graduation film "The Price of Ignorance" won the Jury Prize at the 2001 Fespaco Pan-African Film and Television Festival. Her short film "Kounandi" screened at the Sundance and Toronto film festivals in 2004. After working for several years in the independent film scene in Hollywood, in 2008 she decided to return to Burkina Faso where she has since made several feature films.