Brian Grazer

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Brian Grazer
Grazer in 2011
Born
Brian Thomas Grazer

(1951-07-12) July 12, 1951 (age 72)
Alma materUniversity of Southern California
Occupation(s)Producer, writer
Years active1978–present
Spouses
Corki Corman
(m. 1982; div. 1992)
(m. 1997; div. 2007)
Veronica Smiley
(m. 2016)
Children4
RelativesJack Dylan Grazer (nephew)
AwardsAcademy Award for Best Picture
A Beautiful Mind (2001)

Brian Thomas Grazer (born July 12, 1951) is an American film and television producer. He founded Imagine Entertainment in 1986 with Ron Howard. The films they produced have grossed over $15 billion.[1] Grazer was personally nominated for four Academy Awards for Splash (1984), Apollo 13 (1995), A Beautiful Mind (2001), and Frost/Nixon (2008).[2][3] His films and TV series have been nominated for 47 Academy Awards and 217 Emmy Awards.

In 2002, Grazer won an Oscar for Best Picture for A Beautiful Mind (shared with Ron Howard). In 2007, he was named one of Time's "100 Most Influential People in the World".[4]

Early life[edit]

Grazer was born in Los Angeles, California, to Arlene Becker Grazer and criminal defense attorney Thomas Grazer.[5][6] He is the older brother of Nora Beth Grazer (b. 1952) and actor/director Gavin Grazer (b. 1961).[7] He was raised in Sherman Oaks and Northridge, in Los Angeles's San Fernando Valley.[6]

Grazer's father was Catholic and his mother is Jewish.[5][8][9] His parents divorced when he was in high school.[10] Grazer said "My best buddy, the most important person in my growing up, was my little 4-foot-10 [147 cm] Jewish grandmother, and she'd say, 'In order to get it, you got to do it. No one's going to get it for you, Brian.'"[5]

While in school, Grazer struggled with dyslexia. Grazer got through school by reading other students' papers and arguing his grades with his teachers.[11]

His nephew is actor Jack Dylan Grazer.[12][13]

Education[edit]

Grazer won a scholarship to the University of Southern California (USC) as a psychology major. He graduated from USC's School of Cinema-Television in 1974.[6][14] He then attended USC Law School for one year, but quit in 1975 to pursue a life in Hollywood.[5][6][10][15]

Career[edit]

Grazer began his career as a producer developing television projects. While executive-producing TV pilots at Paramount Pictures in the early 1980s, he met current long-time friend and business partner Ron Howard.[4]

He produced his first feature-film, Night Shift, in 1982, directed by Howard.[4] Grazer and Howard teamed up again for Splash in 1984, which Grazer produced and co-wrote. Splash earned him an Oscar nomination for Best Original Screenplay of 1984.[4] Grazer went on to become an independent producer, teaming up with Tri-Star Pictures to set up plans for a film to star Richard Pryor, and had a continuing relationship with The Walt Disney Studios, and has plans to develop projects for Paramount Pictures.[16]

In November 1985, Grazer and Howard co-founded Imagine Entertainment, which became one of Hollywood's most prolific and successful production companies. Over the years, Grazer's films and TV shows have been nominated for a total of 43 Academy Awards, and 198 Emmys. At the same time, his movies have generated over $15 billion in worldwide theatrical, music, and video grosses.[4]

Grazer's early film successes include Parenthood (1989) and Backdraft (1991).[4] He produced Apollo 13 (1995), for which he won the Producers Guild of America's Daryl F. Zanuck Motion Picture Producer of the Year Award, as well as an Oscar nomination for Best Picture of 1995.[4]

In 1998, he earned two major honors: he was given his own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and made a cameo appearance on the animated series The Simpsons.[17]

In 2001, Grazer won an Academy Award for Best Picture for A Beautiful Mind, which also took home Oscars for Best Supporting Actress (Jennifer Connelly), Best Director (Ron Howard), and Best Adapted Screenplay (Akiva Goldsman).

In 2002, Grazer's 8 Mile was released.[4] It proved not only to be a huge box office hit, but also the first film with a rap song to win a Best Original Song Oscar, for Eminem's "Lose Yourself".[18]

Grazer also produced the film adaptation of Peter Morgan's play Frost/Nixon (2008). Frost/Nixon was nominated for five Academy Awards, including Best Picture.[4]

Grazer's productions span over a quarter-of-a-century, and almost the full spectrum of movie genres. His comedies include Boomerang (1992), The Nutty Professor (1996), Liar Liar (1997), Life (1999), How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000), Intolerable Cruelty (2003) and The Spy Who Dumped Me (2018). He has also produced many dramatic thrillers including Inside Man (2006), The Da Vinci Code (2006), American Gangster (2007), Changeling (2008), Angels & Demons (2009), Robin Hood (2010), and Cowboys & Aliens (2011). His recently released films include J. Edgar, the Clint Eastwood-directed biopic of J. Edgar Hoover, starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Tower Heist, starring Ben Stiller and Eddie Murphy, and Restless, directed by Gus Van Sant.

Grazer's Imagine Entertainment's television series include Sports Night, Felicity, Arrested Development, 24 with Kiefer Sutherland, Friday Night Lights, Parenthood, Lie to Me, Empire, Genius: Einstein, Genius: Picasso and Wu-Tang: An American Saga.[4]

Grazer's recent productions includes Rebuilding Paradise, Dads, the 2017 Grammy awarding winning Best Music Film The Beatles: Eight Days a Week (2016), American Made (2017), Rush (2013), directed by Ron Howard, and starring Chris Hemsworth and Daniel Brühl,[19] and Made in America.

Grazer produced Get on Up, a biopic of the legendary "Godfather of Soul" James Brown, and In the Heart of the Sea, directed by Ron Howard and starring Chris Hemsworth, about the American whaleship the Essex.[20]

In 2015, Grazer published his book A Curious Mind: The Secret to a Bigger Life, a #1 NY Times Bestseller, in which he discusses conversations with interesting people, many of whom inspired his work.[21] In 2019, Grazer released his second book Face To Face: The Art of Human Connection.

In January 2024 it was announced that Scar Tissue, the autobiography of Anthony Kiedis, singer for the Red Hot Chili Peppers, will be turned into a theatrical movie with Grazer, Kiedis and Guy Oseary producing the film for Universal Pictures.[22]

Personal life[edit]

Grazer has been married three times: Corki Corman (1982–92; they have two children), and novelist and screenwriter Gigi Levangie (1997–2007; they have two sons).[6][17] In April 2014, Grazer became engaged to Veronica Smiley, chief marketing officer of SBE, a hotel management company.[23] They married on February 20, 2016.[24]

Grazer currently resides in Santa Monica, California.[25] He also has a home in Hawaii on Sunset Beach, on the Banzai Pipeline on O'ahu's North Shore.[26][27] He is a keen user of jump ropes.[28]

Filmography[edit]

Film[edit]

Producer

Executive producer

Story writer

Music department
Year Film Role Notes
1995 Apollo 13 Executive music producer
Uncredited
Thanks
Year Film Notes
2015 The Haunting of Pearson Place Inspired by

Television[edit]

Executive producer

Year Title Notes
1985−86 Shadow Chasers
1987−88 Ohara
1988 Smart Guys
Poison TV movie
Mutts TV movie
1997 Hiller and Diller
1999 Mulholland Dr. TV pilot
2000 Thirty TV movie
1998−2000 Sports Night
2000 Wonderland
Rat Bastard TV movie
1999−2001 The PJs
2001 The Beast
Silicon Follies TV movie
1998−2002 Felicity
2002 B.S. TV movie
2003 The Snobs TV movie
The Break TV movie
Miss Match
2004 The Big House
2005 Queen B TV movie
Fertile Ground TV movie
2005−06 The Inside
2006 Beyond TV pilot
2007 24: Day Six - Debrief
Nice Girls Don't Get the Corner Office TV movie
2006−08 Shark
2008 24: Redemption TV movie
2009 Maggie Hill TV movie
2001−10 24
2009−11 Lie to Me
2006−11 Friday Night Lights
2011 Friends with Benefits
The Playboy Club
2010−12 Parenthood
2012 The Great Escape
Susan 313 TV movie
2013 How to Live with Your Parents
(For the Rest of Your Life)
2014 Those Who Kill
Gang Related
24: Live Another Day
2006−2015 Curious George
2015 The Bastard Executioner
WTF America TV movie
Problem Child TV pilot
Nerd Herd TV movie
The Clan of the Cave Bear TV pilot
2016 Chance
2016−17 24: Legacy
2015−17 Breakthrough
2017 Shots Fired
2017−18 Genius
2016−18 Mars
2003−19 Arrested Development
2015−19 Empire
2019 Peanuts in Space: Secrets of Apollo 10 TV short
2019–2021 Why Women Kill
2019 Wu-Tang: An American Saga
2020 68 Whiskey
Filthy Rich
2021 Swagger
Dan Brown's The Lost Symbol
The Ms. Pat Show
Genius: Aretha
2022 Under the Banner of Heaven
2023 The Super Models
The Slumber Party TV Movie
2024 The Truth About Jim

Producer

Year Title Notes
1978 Zuma Beach TV movie
Thou Shalt Not Commit Adultery TV movie
1988 Poison
1998 From the Earth to the Moon
1999 Student Affairs TV movie
2005 The WIN Awards TV special
2006 Treasure Hunters Co-producer
Misconceptions
2007 Entourage
2012 84th Academy Awards TV special;
Co-producer
As an actor
Year Title Role Notes
1998 The Simpsons Himself Voice role
2007 Entourage
Uncredited
2013 Arrested Development
2017 This Is Us
As writer
Year Title Notes
1985-86 Shadow Chasers Co-created with Kenneth Johnson
Story with Johnson for episode "Pilot"
Thanks
Year Title Notes
2002 The Clint Howard Variety Show Special thanks

Additional awards[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Orzeck, Kurt (January 10, 2012). "Universal Extends Imagine Deal Through 2016 – But Now It's First Look". Reuters. Archived from the original on July 4, 2013. Retrieved January 1, 2013.
  2. ^ Fleming, Mike Jr. (June 21, 2011). "Q&A: Brian Grazer and Ron Howard on 25 Years Together as Imagine Partners". Deadline Hollywood. Archived from the original on August 21, 2011. Retrieved September 7, 2011.
  3. ^ "J. Edgar film and production crew". The Daily Telegraph. London. January 6, 2012. Archived from the original on January 12, 2022. Retrieved February 6, 2013.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q Imagine Entertainment Brian Grazer Biography Archived December 21, 2011, at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved January 1, 2012.
  5. ^ a b c d Michaelson, Judith (February 16, 1992). "MOVIES: Imagine That: Riddle: How can a person be in the spotlight and still be in the shadows? Answer: Check out producer Brian Grazer's career". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on December 21, 2013. Retrieved January 1, 2013.
  6. ^ a b c d e "Brian Grazer Biography". Yahoo. Archived from the original on December 20, 2013. Retrieved January 1, 2013.
  7. ^ "Slipstream and the Other Grazer Brother". Portfolio.com. October 26, 2007. Archived from the original on February 19, 2012. Retrieved January 1, 2013.
  8. ^ Hammer, Joshua (December 24, 2000). "Periscope". Newsweek. Retrieved March 25, 2019.
  9. ^ "When It Comes to Giving, Super Producer Brian Grazer Isn't Afraid to Get His Hands Dirty". December 2, 2019. Archived from the original on August 20, 2022. Retrieved August 20, 2022.
  10. ^ a b "Huyền thoại Hollywood và cuộc tình với "cô dâu Việt" – XãLuận.com Tin Nóng" (in Vietnamese). Xaluan.com. Archived from the original on April 16, 2014. Retrieved January 1, 2013.
  11. ^ Wallace, Jane. "Success Stories; Brian Grazer, Academy Award-Winning Producer". The Yale Center for Dyslexia & Creativity. Yale University. Archived from the original on February 13, 2020. Retrieved January 16, 2020.
  12. ^ Carroll, Lloyd (August 24, 2017). "What's new on traditional TV". Queens Chronicle. Archived from the original on June 11, 2021. Retrieved March 29, 2022.
  13. ^ "Jack Dylan Grazer Talks 'Shazam'". ET Canada. March 15, 2019. Archived from the original on August 20, 2020. Retrieved March 25, 2019.
  14. ^ "Brian Grazer: 5 Things to Know About Brett Ratner's Oscar Replacement". The Hollywood Reporter. November 10, 2011. Archived from the original on November 10, 2012. Retrieved August 7, 2012.
  15. ^ "Brian Grazer: The Life of Brian". Movieline. July 1, 1992. Archived from the original on December 20, 2013. Retrieved January 1, 2013.
  16. ^ "Grazer to do Par Comedy Next; Tri-Star Pic with Pryor Follows". Variety. March 21, 1984. p. 29.
  17. ^ a b "Brian Grazer". Encyclopedia of World Biography. Retrieved January 1, 2012.
  18. ^ "Brian Grazer | Biography, Photos, Movies, TV, Credits". Hollywood.com. Archived from the original on November 5, 2012. Retrieved January 4, 2013.
  19. ^ "Rush (2013)". IMDb. Archived from the original on December 5, 2017. Retrieved June 30, 2018.
  20. ^ "Chris Hemsworth to Lead IN THE HEART OF THE SEA". Collider. June 11, 2012. Archived from the original on January 5, 2020. Retrieved April 17, 2020.
  21. ^ "A Curious Mind". Goodreads. Archived from the original on April 4, 2015. Retrieved April 14, 2015.
  22. ^ "Anthony Kiedis Biopic In Works At Universal; Brian Grazer Producing Based On Red Hot Chili Peppers Frontman's Memoir 'Scar Tissue'". deadline.com. January 17, 2024. Retrieved January 20, 2024.
  23. ^ "Brian Grazer Engaged to SBE Exec Veronica Smiley". The Hollywood Reporter. April 30, 2014. Retrieved November 3, 2014.
  24. ^ "Producer Brian Grazer Marries Veronica Smiley in Star-Studded Ceremony". February 22, 2016. Archived from the original on October 18, 2021. Retrieved October 12, 2020.
  25. ^ "Holiday Surprise: Hollywood is at Work," Archived December 29, 2011, at the Wayback Machine The New York Times, December 28, 2011
  26. ^ Rotunno, Anthony & Mathews, Dana. "Brian Grazer's Tips on Hawaii's Banzai Pipeline on Oahu". Vanity Fair. Retrieved January 1, 2013.
  27. ^ "Surfing Oahu's North Shore". Travel + Leisure. Retrieved January 1, 2013.
  28. ^ Archived at Ghostarchive and the Wayback Machine: "Joe Rogan Discusses Power of Jump Rope" – via YouTube.
  29. ^ Medzerian, David (March 29, 2022). "6 distinguished figures to receive USC honorary degrees". USC Today. Retrieved May 9, 2024.

External links[edit]