NEIL JORDAN Biography - Writers


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Born in 1950 in Sligo, Ireland, Neil Jordan's early career began as a writer.       
After setting up The Irish Writers' Cooperative in 1974, he went on to win The       
Guardian Fiction Prize for his book of short stories NIGHT IN TUNISIA (1976).       
Since then he has gone on to publish three novels, THE PAST (1979), THE DREAM OF     
A BEAST (1983) and most recently SUNRISE WITH SEA MONSTER (1994). Jordan's           
published fiction has been translated into several languages, including French,     
Spanish, Italian, German, Dutch, Swedish and Japanese.                               
In 1982 Neil Jordan wrote and directed his first feature film, ANGEL, for which     
he won The London Evening Standard's Most Promising Newcomer Award. THE COMPANY     
OF WOLVES (1984) was his next film and was honoured with Best Film and Best         
Director Awards by the London Critics Circle and a Golden Scroll for Outstanding     
Achievement from The Academy of Science Fiction and Horror Films.                   
MONA LISA followed in 1986, it starred Michael Caine, Cathy Tyson and Bob           
Hoskins, who won the Best Actor Award at The Cannes Film Festival, the Golden       
Globe Award for Best Actor and received an Academy Award nomination for Best         
Actor. The film itself was nominated for a Golden Globe Award, a Los Angeles         
Film Critics Award and a Best Screenplay nomination from The Writers Guild of       
America. It was also nominated in the categories of Best Film, Best Direction       
and Best Original Screenplay in the 1986 BAFTAS.                                     
MONA LISA was followed by two comedies. One, HIGH SPIRITS (1988), set in Ireland     
starring Daryl Hannah, Steve Guttenberg and Peter O'Toole, the other, WE'RE NO       
ANGELS (1989), his first all-American production, starring Robert De Niro and       
Sean Penn. He then returned to Ireland to make a much smaller film THE MIRACLE       
in 1991, which starred Beverly D'Angelo.                                             
In 1992 Jordan wrote and directed THE CRYING GAME which was nominated for six       
Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor (Stephen Rea),     
Best Supporting Actor (Jaye Davidson) and which won Jordan an Oscar for Best         
Original Screenplay.                                                                 
In addition, it was voted Best Foreign Film by the Los Angeles Film Critics         
Association and Best Screenplay by the New York Film Critics Circle and the         
Writers Guild of America. It also received the Best Foreign Film Independent         
Spirit Award and was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for Best Drama and the       
Mystery of America's Edgar Allan Poe Award for Best Film. In the UK, the film       
won the BAFTA for Best British Film and was nominated for five other BAFTA           
Awards including Best Screenplay, Best Actor, Best Supporting Actor, Best           
Supporting Actress and Best Editing. Jordan was selected Best Director by the       
Guild of Regional Film Writers and nominated for Best Screenplay by the Writers     
Guild of Great Britain. It also received Norway's award for Best Foreign Film.       
In 1994 Jordan returned to the United States to film an adaptation of Anne Rice's   
popular novel INTERVIEW WITH THE VAMPIRE, starring Tom Cruise, Brad Pitt,           
Antonio Banderas and Christian Slater. Next came the film of the Irish               
revolutionary MICHAEL COLLINS (1996), starring Liam Neeson, Aidan Quinn and         
Julia Roberts, which won a Golden Lion for best film at the Venice Film Festival.   
In 1996 Jordan was also awarded the distinction of les Arts et Lettres, as           
officer in the order, on the occasion of l'Imaginaire Irlandais in France, for       
his contribution to cinema.                                                         
He went on to collaborate with Irish novelist Pat McCabe to adapt his novel THE     
BUTCHER BOY for the screen in 1997, it won Jordan a Silver Bear award for Best       
Director at the Berlin Film Festival and newcomer Eamonn Owens received a           
special mention for his performance in the film.                                     
In 1999 Jordan made the psychological thriller IN DREAMS, starring Annette           
Bening, Robert Downey Jr, Aidan Quinn and Stephen Rea. In the same year he went     
on to direct his own adaptation of Graham Greene's novel THE END OF THE AFFAIR,     
starring Ralph Fiennes, Julianne Moore and Stephen Rea. The film was nominated       
for four Golden Globe Awards, two Academy Awards and ten BAFTA Awards, Jordan       
was honoured with the BAFTA for the Best Adapted Screenplay.                         
Jordan soon went on to direct a fourteen minute film based on Samuel Beckett's       
play, NOT I, which starred Julianne Moore and had its world premiere at the         
Cannes Film Festival in 2000.                                                       
In February 2001 Neil Jordan was the recipient of The Ireland Fund of France         
Wild Geese Award. In December of the same year he was conferred with the degree     
of Doctor of Literature (honoris causa) from the The Queen's University Belfast.     
Neil's next film which he shot entirely in the South of France, THE GOOD THIEF,     
starring Nick Nolte, Tcheky Karyo, Emir Kusturica and Nutsa Kukhianidze will         
have its premiere at the Toronto Film Festival in 2002.                             
Jordan set up the production company Company of Wolves with Stephen Woolley         
through which they have produced, THE ACTORS, directed by Conor McPherson,           
starring Michael Caine and Dylan Moran, and INTERMISSION, directed by John           
Crowley, starring Colin Farrell and Colm Meaney.