Born near Paris, Thomas Vincent worked as a still photographer, actor, and production assistant before he made his short film Lady Bag in 1992. It was a love story between a crazy « rag woman » and a he-man in a wheel chair. The second short, Les Mickeys, was a sort of whodunit influenced by the universe of Melville. He began to work on Karnaval, his first feature film, in 1994 when he discovered the Dunkirk Carnival in the north of France. The film was completed in 1998.