David Elias Callaham (born on October 24, 1977) is an American film writer.
Callaham was born in Fresno, California on October 24, 1977. Callaham studied English at the University of Michigan and graduated in 1999. He is married to Bree Tichy. They were married in 2009. Callaham is a Brown Belt in 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu under Eddie Bravo.
After reading an article in Penthouse magazine focusing on the lifestyle of Hollywood TV writers, Callaham and a friend drove to Los Angeles with plans to write comedies together. They sent query letters to multiple agencies but never received responses. Callaham worked at Creative Artists Agency for a while, sometimes submitted his material secretly for coverage.
In 2003, Callaham wrote the film adaption to the video game Doom and submitted it in the summer of 2005. Around that time, Callaham wrote Barrow for Warner Bros., a mercenary-inspired action script which later became The Expendables. Callaham was credited for story and characters after Sylvester Stallone used Callaham's Barrow script as a "starting point" for The Expendables. In 2010, Legendary Pictures hired Callaham to write the first draft for Godzilla, for which he would end up receiving a story credit for. In 2014, Callaham completed a rewrite for Marvel's Ant-Man and was hired to write the Zombieland sequel for Sony, Jackpot for Focus Features and America: The Motion Picture for Netflix.
In late 2013, Nu Image and Millennium Films filed a lawsuit against Callaham and the Writers Guild of America West for fraud, unjust enrichment and declaratory relief over a "flawed and misinformed" Guild arbitration that gave Callaham undeserved writing credit for The Expendables and The Expendables 2. The Plaintiffs have accused Callaham for intentionally withholding emails and other correspondences from the WGA screen writing credit arbitration panel in 2009 that according to the plaintiffs reveal how very little Callaham was involved with The Expendables and demand reimbursements from Callaham for any payments made to him for his fraud credit in the two films.
When Sylvester Stallone was developing the script for The Expendables, Callaham claimed that Stallone used his script, Barrow, as the source for The Expendables. A WGA arbitration was ignited in which Callaham won and additionally earned $102,250 in bonus payments. However, the plaintiffs have uncovered emails from Callaham admitting that his script is nothing like Stallone's script.
- Doom (2005)
- Horsemen (2009)
- Tell Tale (2009)
- The Expendables (2010)
- The Expendables 2 (2012) (characters)
- Godzilla (2014) (story)
- Untitled Zombieland Sequel (TBA)
- Jackpot (TBA)
- America: The Motion Picture (TBA)