Jim Sheridan (born 6 February 1949) is an Irish playwright, screenwriter, film director, and film producer. In the few years from 1989 to 1993, Sheridan directed two critically acclaimed films set in Ireland (My Left Foot and In the Name of the Father) that between them received 13 Academy Award nominations. Sheridan has personally received six Academy Award nominations. In addition to the above-mentioned films, he is also known for the films The Boxer and In America.
Life and career
Jim Sheridan was born in Dublin, Ireland to Anna and Peter Sheridan Snr and raised in the inner city. He is the brother of playwright Peter Sheridan. The family ran a lodging house, while Anna Sheridan worked at a hotel and Peter Sheridan Snr was a railway clerk with CIÉ. Sheridan's early education was at a Christian Brothers school. In 1969 he attended University College Dublin to study English and History. He became involved in student theater there, where he met Neil Jordan, who also was later to become an important Irish film director. After graduating from UCD in 1972, Sheridan and his brother began writing and staging plays, and in the late 1970s began working with the Project Theatre Company.
In 1981, Sheridan emigrated to Canada, but eventually settled in the Hell's Kitchen section of New York City. He enrolled in NYU's Tisch School of the Arts and became the artistic director of the Irish Arts Center.
Sheridan returned to Ireland in the late 1980s. In 1989, he directed My Left Foot, which became a critical and commercial success and won Daniel Day-Lewis and Brenda Fricker Academy Awards. He followed that with The Field (with Richard Harris) in 1990; then with In the Name of the Father in 1993, a fictionalized re-telling of the case of the Guildford Four. The film won the Golden Bear at the 44th Berlin International Film Festival.
In 1996 he co-wrote Some Mother's Son with Terry George. The Boxer (with Daniel Day-Lewis) was nominated for a Golden Globe for best film drama in 1997. The film was Sheridan's third collaboration with Day-Lewis after My Left Foot and In the Name of the Father, making him the only director to work with Day-Lewis on three films. In 2003, he released the semi-autobiographical In America, which tells the story of a family of Irish immigrants trying to succeed in New York. The film received positive reviews and earned Samantha Morton and Djimon Hounsou Academy Award nominations. In 2005 he released Get Rich or Die Tryin', a film starring rap star 50 Cent. He is connected with the upcoming film adaptation of Artemis Fowl and is rumoured to have written the screenplay and been asked to direct it.
Sheridan helmed the 2009 film Brothers, starring Tobey Maguire and Jake Gyllenhaal, which was shot in New Mexico. He also directed the thriller Dream House, which starred Daniel Craig, Naomi Watts, and Rachel Weisz.
Awards and nominations
- Best Original Screenplay – In America (2004), nomination (as co-writer)
- Best Adapted Screenplay – In the Name of the Father (1994), nomination (as co-writer)
- Best Director – In the Name of the Father (1994), nomination (as director)
- Best Picture – In the Name of the Father (1994), nomination (as producer)
- Best Adapted Screenplay – My Left Foot (1990), nomination (as co-writer)
- Best Director – My Left Foot (1990), nomination (as director)
Berlin Film Festival
- 1994, Golden Bear – In the Name of the Father, winner
- 1998, Golden Bear – The Boxer, nomination
British Academy Film Awards
- Best Adapted Screenplay – In the Name of the Father (1993), nomination (as co-writer)
Golden Globe Awards
- Best Screenplay – In America (2002), nomination (as co-writer)
- Best Director – The Boxer (1997), nomination
Independent Spirit Awards
- Best Director – In America (2002), nomination
- Best Director - The Secret Scripture (2016), nomination
- Best Director - Brothers (2009), winner
- Lifetime Achievement Award - (2015), Winner
National Board of Review
- Best Original Screenplay – In America (2002), winner (as co-writer)
Writers Guild of America
- Best Original Screenplay – In America (2002), nomination (as co-writer)
Gregory Peck Award
- Lifetime Achievement - Dingle International Film Festival (2009)