Joel Novoa was born in New York, but grew up in Caracas, Venezuela. He holds a Law Degree and a MFA in Directing from American Film Institute. Joel Directed God's Slave at the age of twenty-four. The feature was filmed in four different countries in South America. The movie received worldwide theatrical release and then Netflix deal. Since its tour of the festival circuit, the film has won 18 international awards and has been included in more than 75 festival official selections.
Joel has directed more than 20 hours of television episodes, including mainstream shows like Cobra Kai for Netflix, Arrow for WB, Walker and Blood and Treasure for CBS. As a bilingual director and creator that works in both, the US and Global market, Joel is the Co- Executive producer for El Gato Negro, a premium show for MGM and Apple TV and co-showrunner of Kahlo. Joel recently directed in Mexico, the pilot and 10 episodes for the premium Sony show Codigo Implacable, premiering in 2022.
Joel is the recipient of the prestigious Franklin J. Schaffner Fellow Award 2012 for his contributions as a director, the Caucus Foundation Award 2012 and the Deluxe merit for best director 2011. Joel teamed up with Sally Hibbin for the film “I.D2: Shadwell Army”, sequel to the prestigious British hooligan film “I.D”, starred by Linus Roache. Premiered in 25 screens across U.K.
Joel´s short film slate include MACHSOM was selected as one of five DGA Showcase finalists. It has competed at nearly well over sixty festivals, including AFI Fest. It won the special Jury Prize at the Bermuda International Film Festival and the Special Jury Award at The Beijing Film Festival, The Audience Award at the Boston Film Festival and The Jury Prize at the Irvine International Film Festival amongst others. Joel also directed four Short Films with selections and honors in more than thirty film festivals, including Cannes Film Festival.
In 2016 Joel directed “Day of Reckoning” for Universal, being one of the year´s top gross films for Syfy Channel. The film has worldwide theatrical and tv deal with Universal.