PAUL HAGGIS Biography - Theater, Opera and Movie personalities


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Name: Paul Edward Haggis                                                                     
Born: 10 March 1953 London, Ontario, Canada                                                 
Paul Edward Haggis (born March 10, 1953 in London, Ontario) is an Academy Award-winning     
Canadian screenwriter, producer and film director who spent his early career in             
the television field writing, producing and directing various American and                   
Canadian television network series.                                                         
Haggis is the son of Ted and the late Mary Haggis, onetime owners of London                 
Ontario's former Gallery Theatre at 36 York Street where the younger Haggis cut             
his teeth in theater production, directing, and playwriting in the early 1970s.             
He attended St Thomas More Elementary School, St George's Public School,                     
Mitchell District High School, and Fanshawe College in London before leaving for             
Los Angeles in 1975 to follow his dream of writing television and movie scripts.             
According to his father Ted, it was 'three years two months and 10 days' before             
his son sold his first TV script (father Ted had been sending his son Paul $100             
a week during these lean years during which Paul landed odd jobs including                   
moving furniture).                                                                           
He is the father of four children and resides in Santa Monica California with               
his second wife singer/actor Deborah Rennard.                                               
As a television writer/producer, he created or co-created the series Walker,                 
Texas Ranger, Due South, Family Law, and the celebrated, if quickly cancelled EZ             
Streets. In 1989, he received two Emmy awards for his work on the show                       
thirtysomething: one as a writer; and another as a producer. He returned to                 
television in the spring of 2007, after NBC picked up a 13-episode order for his             
crime drama, The Black Donnellys. The show was canceled by NBC on May 14, 2007.             
HDNet will air the remaining six episodes and Paul is in talks with the network             
to pick up season two.                                                                       
In addition to directing multiple episodes of the above-mentioned television                 
shows, Haggis has directed several feature films and written several successful             
screenplays. Red Hot, his directorial debut, had a limited video release in 1993.           
Around the turn of the century he came into his own as both a writer and                     
director in films. As a film writer, he received an Oscar nomination for Best               
Adapted Screenplay for 2004's Million Dollar Baby, directed by Clint Eastwood,               
which won three Oscars, including Best Picture.                                             
His second directorial effort performed equally as well. Crash, which he co-wrote,           
directed and co-produced debuted in September 2004 at the Toronto Film Festival.             
Lions Gate Films purchased the distribution rights for $3 million and released               
it internationally in May of 2005 to mostly positive reviews, with film critics             
Ebert and Roeper giving it a "two thumbs way up" rating and Roger Ebert naming               
it the best film of the year.                                                               
The film was nominated for six Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best                 
Director and Best Original Screenplay categories. He won an Academy Award for               
Best Original Screenplay and the film itself received the Academy Award for Best             
Picture. Overall, he has won two Academy Awards and been nominated for four. He             
lost the directing prize to Ang Lee for Brokeback Mountain, but he became the               
only man in history to have penned two consecutive Best Picture Oscar-winners.               
Haggis' fourth film as a feature film director, which he also wrote, is entitled             
Honeymoon with Harry and is scheduled for release in 2008 although production               
has yet to commence.                                                                         
Haggis also adapted, for director Eastwood, James Bradley's book Flags of Our               
Fathers, about the Battle of Iwo Jima. The film was released on October 20, 2006.           
Haggis was hired in August 2005 to revise the screenplay for the James Bond film,           
Casino Royale, which was also released late in 2006. The original screenplay had             
been written by Neal Purvis and Robert Wade, based on the novel by Ian Fleming.             
Haggis has confirmed that he will return to polishing the script for the follow             
up, Quantum of Solace. He was asked to direct but declined.                                 
He received a fifth Academy Award nomination for his role in writing Letters                 
from Iwo Jima, alongside Japanese writer Iris Yamashita.