Giorgi Shengelaia was born on May 11, 1937 in Moscow. He graduated from Moscow State Institute of Cinematography (VGIK) in 1962 where he studied film directing. In 1968, he joined the Union of Cinematographers. After 1962, he worked in Kartuli Filmi Studio (Georgian Film). He was granted the Order of the Badge of Honour in 1976. Giorgi Shengelaia was a winner of various film festivals including Transcaucasian and Ukrainian Film Festival (1966), Bergamo (Italy) 10th International Film Festival (1966), Chicago 10th International Film Festival (Golden Hugo) (1974), British Film Institute Award (1973), Asolo Art Film Festival (1974) Berlin International Film Festival (Silver Berlin Bear, 1986). He was granted awards and diplomas of Finnish Art Academy (1975), Symposium in Yerevan dedicated to the problems of aesthetic education through cinema art (1977), Bronze Medal of Exhibition of Achievements of National Economy Union Exhibition (1980), Shota Rustavei Award (1985) and etc.
Giorgi Shengelaia died on February 17, 2020 in Tbilisi.