Van Groeningen followed a training in audiovisual arts at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts of Ghent and graduated in 2000.
He became famous because of his debut movie Steve + Sky casting among others former model Delfine Bafort (who has also been his lover) and Flemish actor Titus De Voogdt. For this movie he received the Plateau Award 2004 for Best Belgian Film. In 2007 he brought out With Friends Like These. The Soundtrack was written by Jef Neve. In 2008 he started directing The Misfortunates, an adaptation for the screen of the book De helaasheid der dingen by Dimitri Verhulst. The picture, that was brought out in October 2009 in Belgium and the Netherlands, was selected in May 2009 for the Quinzaine des Réalisateurs from the International Film Festival of Cannes. There The Misfortunates won the Prix Art et Essai, a distinction of the organisation that makes a resumen of 3,000 independent cinemas worldwide. Subsequently Van Groeningen won also the Jo Röpcke Award 2009 at the Ghent Film Festival. On 9 October 2012 Felix Van Groeningen opened the Film Festival in his city of birth with his fourth movie The Broken Circle Breakdown, a country-movie starring Johan Heldenbergh and Veerle Baetens. This movie would later go on to become the Belgian entry to the Best Foreign Language Film at the 86th Academy Awards, and was on the nominated shortlist.