Gray at Berlinale 2017
|Born||April 14, 1969|
|Occupation||Film director, screenwriter|
Alexandra Dickson (m. 2005)
James Gray (born April 14, 1969) is an American film director and screenwriter. Since his feature debut Little Odessa in 1994, he has made six other features, four of which competed for the Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival.
Gray was born in New York City. He is of Ukrainian-Jewish descent, with grandparents from Ostropol, Western Ukraine. His father was once an electronics contractor. Gray attended the University of Southern California School of Cinematic Arts, where his student film, Cowboys and Angels, helped him get an agent and the attention of producer Paul Webster, who encouraged him to write a script which he could produce.
In 1994, at age 25, Gray made his first feature film Little Odessa, a film starring Tim Roth about a hit man confronted by his younger brother upon returning to his hometown, "Little Odessa," a section of Brighton Beach, Brooklyn. The film won the Silver Lion at the 51st Venice International Film Festival.
In 2000, Miramax released his second film, The Yards, a crime drama shot in 1998. His third film, We Own the Night, starring Joaquin Phoenix and Mark Wahlberg, played in competition at the 2007 Cannes Film Festival in May, receiving widely divergent reviews from international critics. We Own the Night was released theatrically in the US on October 12, 2007.
In November 2012 he was selected as a member of the main competition jury at the 2012 International Film Festival of Marrakech.
In October 2016, Gray's film The Lost City of Z premiered at the New York Film Festival. The film, based on the book by David Grann, depicts the life of explorer Percy Fawcett, played by Charlie Hunnam.
Gray married Alexandra Dickson in 2005. The couple have three children.
|1994||Little Odessa||Yes||No||Yes||Feature directorial debut|
|2000||The Yards||Yes||No||Yes||Co-written with Matt Reeves|
|2007||We Own the Night||Yes||No||Yes|
|2008||Two Lovers||Yes||Yes||Yes||Co-written with Richard Menello|
|2013||Blood Ties||No||Executive||Yes||Co-screenwriter with Guillaume Canet; based on Les liens du sang by Jacques Maillot|
|The Immigrant||Yes||Yes||Yes||Co-written with Richard Menello|
|2016||The Lost City of Z||Yes||Yes||Yes||Based on the book of the same name by David Grann|
|2019||Ad Astra||Yes||Yes||Yes||Co-written with Ethan Gross|
|Little Odessa (1994)||The Yards (2000)||We Own the Night (2007)||Two Lovers (2008)||The Immigrant (2013)||The Lost City of Z (2016)||Ad Astra (2019)|
|Jose Edwin Soto||Yes||Yes|
|51st Venice International Film Festival||Golden Lion||1994||Little Odessa||Nominated|
|11th Independent Spirit Awards||Best First Screenplay||1996||Nominated|
|Best First Feature||Nominated|
|2000 Cannes Film Festival||Palme d'Or||2000||The Yards||Nominated|
|2007 Cannes Film Festival||Palme d'Or||2007||We Own the Night||Nominated|
|2008 Cannes Film Festival||Palme d'Or||2008||Two Lovers||Nominated|
|25th Independent Spirit Awards||Best Director||2010||Nominated|
|2013 Cannes Film Festival||Palme d'Or||2013||The Immigrant||Nominated|
And he is. He's also a grade-A kibitzer, a gregarious character, whose chatty and self-effacing wit bespeaks his Queens upbringing and Eastern European-Jewish heritage.