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Brian Grazer

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Title: Brian Grazer  
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Subject: Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Drama Series, A Beautiful Mind (film), Changeling (film), Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas (film), 84th Academy Awards
Collection: 1951 Births, 20Th-Century American Businesspeople, 21St-Century American Businesspeople, American Catholics, American Film Producers, American People of Jewish Descent, American Television Producers, Businesspeople from Los Angeles, California, Daytime Emmy Award Winners, Golden Globe Award Winning Producers, Living People, People from Northridge, Los Angeles, People from Oahu, People from Sherman Oaks, Los Angeles, Producers Who Won the Best Picture Academy Award, University of Southern California Alumni, University of Southern California Law School Alumni, Usc School of Cinematic Arts Alumni
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Brian Grazer

Brian Grazer
Grazer at the 2011 Tribeca Film Festival
Vanity Fair party
Born Brian Thomas Grazer
(1951-07-12) July 12, 1951
Los Angeles, California, United States
Residence Santa Monica, California, and North Shore, Oahu, Hawaii
Nationality American
Occupation Producer (film and television)
Years active 1978–present
Employer Imagine Entertainment (co-founder)
Home town Sherman Oaks and Northridge, California
Spouse(s) Theresa McKay (1972–79)
Corki Corman (1982–92)
Gigi Levangie Grazer (1997–2007)
Children 3 sons and 1 daughter
Parent(s) Arlene Becker Grazer and Thomas Grazer

Brian Thomas Grazer (born July 12, 1951) is an American film and television producer.

He co-founded Imagine Entertainment in 1986, with Ron Howard. The films they produced have grossed over $13 billion.[2] The movies include four for which Grazer was personally nominated for an Academy Award: Splash (1984), Apollo 13 (1995), A Beautiful Mind (2001), and Frost/Nixon (2008).[3][4] His films and TV series have been nominated for 43 Academy Awards, and 131 Emmys.

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".[1]


  • Early life 1
  • Education 2
  • Career 3
  • Personal life 4
  • Additional awards 5
  • References 6
  • External links 7

Early life

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 (born 1952) and actor/director Gavin Grazer (1956).[7] He was raised in Sherman Oaks and Northridge, in Los Angeles's San Fernando Valley.[6]

Grazer's mother is Jewish and his father was Catholic,[8][9] and he described himself in 2000 as "half-Jewish".[9] Subsequently, third-party reports conflicted as to whether he was Jewish or a practicing Christian.[10][11][12] His parents divorced when he was in high school.[13] Grazer said "My best buddy, the most important person in my growing up, was my little 4-foot-10 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.'"[8]


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.[6][8][13][15]


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.[1]

He produced his first feature-film, Night Shift, in 1982, directed by Howard.[1] 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.[1]

In 1986, 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 131 Emmys. At the same time, his movies have generated more than $13.5 billion in worldwide theatrical, music, and video grosses.[1]

Grazer's early film successes include Parenthood (1989) and Backdraft (1991).[16] 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.[1]

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.[16] 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 Frost/Nixon (2008). Frost/Nixon was nominated for five Academy Awards, including Best Picture.[1]

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), Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000), Intolerable Cruelty (2003) and The Dilemma (2011). He has also produced many dramatic thrillers including Inside Man (2006), The Da Vinci Code (2006), American Gangster (2007), Changeling (2008), Angels and 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, and Lie to Me.[19] Upcoming series include Those Who Kill,[20] and Gang Related.[21]

Grazer's recent productions included Rush (2013), directed by Ron Howard, and starring Chris Hemsworth and Daniel Brühl,[22] and Made in America, airing on Showtime on October 11, 2013.[23]

Grazer produced Get on Up, a biopic of the legendary "Godfather of Soul" James Brown, and the upcoming In the Heart of the Sea, directed by Ron Howard and starring Chris Hemsworth, about the true story about the American whaleship the Essex.[24]

In 2015 Grazer published his book A Curious Mind: The Secret to a Bigger Life, in which he discusses conversations with interesting people, many of whom inspired his work.[25]

Personal life

Grazer has been married and divorced three times: to Theresa McKay (1972–79), Corki Corman (1982–92; they had two children; son Riley (born 1986) and daughter Sage (1988)), and novelist and screenwriter Gigi Levangie (1997–2007; they had two sons; Thomas (1999) and Patrick (2004)).[17][26] In 2011, Grazer was engaged to Vietnamese concert pianist and artist Nguyễn Thị Châu Giang, his girlfriend of five years, who is the founder of American Friends of Vietnam.[27][28][29][30]

In April 2014, Grazer became engaged to Veronica Smiley, chief marketing officer of SBE, a hotel management company.[31][32]

Grazer currently resides in Santa Monica, California.[33] He also has a home in Hawaii on Sunset Beach, on the Banzai Pipeline on O'ahu's North Shore.[34][35]

Additional awards


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p Imagine Entertainment Brian Grazer Biography. Retrieved January 1, 2012.
  2. ^ Orzeck, Kurt (January 10, 2012). "Universal Extends Imagine Deal Through 2016 – But Now It's First Look". Reuters. Retrieved January 1, 2013. 
  3. ^ Mike Fleming Jr., "Q&A: Brian Grazer and Ron Howard on 25 Years Together as Imagine Partners" June 21, 2011. Retrieved September 7, 2011.
  4. ^ "J. Edgar film and production crew". London: Telegraph. January 6, 2012. Retrieved February 6, 2013. 
  5. ^ 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. Retrieved January 1, 2013. 
  6. ^ a b c d "Brian Grazer Biography". Yahoo. Retrieved January 1, 2013. 
  7. ^ "Slipstream and the Other Grazer Brother". October 26, 2007. Retrieved January 1, 2013. 
  8. ^ a b c 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. Retrieved January 1, 2013. 
  9. ^ a b "Periscope". Newsweek and The Daily Beast. December 24, 2000. Retrieved January 1, 2013. 
  10. ^ [5]
  11. ^ Danielle Berrin (July 2, 2009). "Cool, Hot and Jewish | Cover Story". Jewish Journal. Retrieved February 6, 2013. 
  12. ^ Nate Bloom (December 8, 2011). "Jewish Stars".   "Last week we mentioned that mega-producer Brian Grazer has taken over the job producing the Oscars telecast, but he isn't really a Jewish star. Even though he has a Jewish parent, he became a practicing Christian more than a decade ago."
  13. ^ a b "Huyền thoại Hollywood và cuộc tình với "cô dâu Việt" – XãLuậ Tin Nóng" (in Vietnamese). Retrieved January 1, 2013. 
  14. ^ "Brian Grazer: 5 Things to Know About Brett Ratner’s Oscar Replacement".  
  15. ^ Staff, Movieline (July 1, 1992). "Brian Grazer: The Life of Brian". Movieline. Retrieved January 1, 2013. 
  16. ^ a b Imagine Entertainment Film. Retrieved January 1, 2012.
  17. ^ a b Encyclopedia of World Biography Brian Grazer. Retrieved January 1, 2012.
  18. ^ "Brian Grazer | Biography, Photos, Movies, TV, Credits". Retrieved January 4, 2013. 
  19. ^ Imagine Entertainment Television. Retrieved January 1, 2012.
  20. ^ O'Connell, Michael (April 9, 2013). "'"A&E Picks Up Scripted Drama 'Those Who Kill. The Hollywood Reporter. 
  21. ^ [6]
  22. ^ [7]
  23. ^ Rose, Lacey (August 30, 2013). "Jay Z's 'Made in America' Documentary Acquired by Showtime". The Hollywood Reporter. 
  24. ^ [8].
  25. ^
  26. ^ "Brian Grazer Biography". Yahoo. Retrieved January 4, 2013. 
  27. ^ American Friends of Vietnam: About AFoV retrieved December 31, 2012
  28. ^ "Grazer and Nguyen to Wed". UPI. April 19, 2011. Retrieved January 1, 2013. 
  29. ^ The Bagger (December 21, 2012). "American Prankster". The New York Times. Retrieved January 1, 2013. 
  30. ^ "Producer Brian Grazer and Artist Chau Giang Thi Nguyen". November 5, 2007. Retrieved January 4, 2013. 
  31. ^ "Producer Brian Grazer engaged, but almost lost the ring". The New York Post. April 29, 2014. Retrieved May 1, 2014. 
  32. ^ "Brian Grazer Engaged to SBE Exec Veronica Smiley". The Hollywood Reporter. April 30, 2014. Retrieved November 3, 2014. 
  33. ^ "Holiday Surprise: Hollywood is at Work," The New York Times, December 28, 2011
  34. ^ Anthony Rotunno and Dana Mathews. "Brian Grazer’s Tips on Hawaii’s Banzai Pipeline on Oahu". Vanity Fair. Retrieved January 1, 2013. 
  35. ^ "Surfing Oahu's North Shore".  

External links

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