Khoa arrived in Australia as a refugee from Vietnam and, since then, has specialised in working with marginalised communities, including at-risk and homeless youths, former convicted prisoners, and fellow refugees. He was the youngest film director in Australian history to be nominated for an AFI Award for Best Director for his film The Finished People, which was also nominated for 2 other AFI Awards, 3 Film Critics’ Circle Awards, 2 Australian Writers’ Guild Awards, and an Australian Screen Director’s Award. The Finished People was also shortlisted for a 2001 Academy Award.
In 2003, Khoa Do won the IF Independent Spirit Award and, three years later in 2006, he wrote and directed the film Footy Legends, which won Grand Jury Prize at the Vietnamese International Film Festival and the Phillip Parson’s Young Playwright’s Award in 2008.That same year, Khoa went on to write his next film Mother Fish, which won awards at the Sydney Film Festival, the Canada International Film Festival, the Orlando Film Festival, and the Vietnamese International Film Festival in 2011. He followed this with Falling for Sahara set in a Melbourne housing estate, and he’s currently in pre-production on the television series Better Man.
Outside of his film work, he won Young Vietnamese Australian of the Year in 2000, Young Citizen of the Year in 2001, and Young Australian of the Year in 2005. Khoa’s story of success and triumph have made him one the most inspirational public speakers in Australia, and his innate gift for storytelling is just as apparent in his presentations as it is his films.