John Gallagher is a New York City-based filmmaker, a fixture on the New York scene for 40 years as a director, writer, producer, author, historian and educator, with a wide range of international filmmaking resources and relationships, and a highly regarded, encyclopedic knowledge of films and filmmaking. His track record is especially strong in discovering and mentoring new talent, both in front of and behind the camera. Among the actors John has worked with in debut or significant early roles are John Leguizamo, Amanda Peet, Zach Braff, Michael Imperioli, Gretchen Mol, Matthew Lillard, Vincent Pastore, Heather Matarazzo, Steve Stanulis and Denis Leary.
In October 2018 John was the first recipient of the Cutting Room Film Festival Lifetime Career Achievement Award for Directing, his third such honor. In March 2019, John received the prestigious Linda Dano Heart Award for Career Achievement, presented by Good Day New York’s Rosanna Scotto at the Ziegfeld Ballroom on behalf of HeartShare Charities.
In the past twelve years, twelve features and twenty shorts have been produced under his 305 Media Group banner. He is also well known for championing and promoting female filmmakers on two dozen films, and has been honored with seven career achievement awards to date.
In 2017, John had three features as director and/or producer – THE NETWORKER, AMERICAN FANGO, SAM – acquired by Sony companies.
John recently completed directing and producing his comedy-drama script SARAH Q starring his longtime colleagues Tony Sirico (The Sopranos’ Paulie Walnuts), Vincent Pastore (The Sopranos’ Big Pussy), Federico Castelluccio (The Sopranos’ Furio), and Oscar nominees Burt Young and Sally Kirkland. In its world premiere at the Golden Door International Film Festival in September 2018, John’s protégé Emmy James won the award for Best Actress in a Feature Film, and at the Northeast Film Festival in September 2019. SARAH Q has been acquired for international distribution by Random Media.
John is the director of the feature comedy-drama THE NETWORKER, released by The Orchard in September 2017 starring Steve Stanulis, William Forsythe, Sean Young, Alysia Reiner, Jeremy Luke, Natalie Knepp, Joe D’Onofrio, Brian Kelly, Samantha Scaffidi and Stephen Baldwin, and a writer-producer on the rom-com SAM, directed by Nick Brooks, starring Natalie Knepp, Sean Kleier, Stacy Keach, Morgan Fairchild, Joe D’Onofrio, James McCaffrey, Bryan Batt, Brian Kelly and Sarah Scott, and executive produced by comedy legend Mel Brooks. He is also the Executive Producer of the recent feature romantic comedy ENCHANTMENTS, directed by and starring Kelsey O’Brien, and the psycho-sexual thriller CLASSIFIED KILLER by Dani Barker, directed by Sylvia Caminer.
John wrote and directed the critically acclaimed feature romantic fable BLUE MOON, released theatrically through Castle Hill, starring screen legends Ben Gazzara and Rita Moreno, with Alanna Ubach, Heather Matarazzo, Vincent Pastore, Burt Young, and Zach Braff. The movie won Best American Feature at the Avignon/New York Film Festival, and Best Fantasy Film at Worldfest Houston. John also directed and co-wrote the popular cult comedy THE DELI (Castle Hill), with a cast including Mike Starr, Matt Keeslar, Gretchen Mol, Ice T, Heather Matarazzo, Brian Vincent, Judith Malina, Debi Mazar, Michael Imperioli, Iman, David Johansen, Burt Young, Chris Noth, Heavy D, Frank Vincent, Vincent Pastore and Tony Sirico. THE DELI won the Spirit of Independents Award at the Ft. Lauderdale International Film Festival, and was cited for Excellence in Filmmaking by the National Board of Review. THE DELI is available in a Special Edition DVD from Warner/Ryko, and airs frequently on national TV. John was honored at the 2012 Soho International Film Festival with a 15th anniversary celebration of THE DELI, and the 2017 Long Island International Film Expo for the 20th anniversary.
In 2018, John has directed two shorts, WANT and WINK; WANT has played in four festivals, winning Best Dramatic Short in three of them.
For Kohl Beck’s Open Factory LLC John directed WE REMEMBER; the film has been invited to 40 film festivals and has won 21 awards, including four Best Director nods for John. He produced Gabriele Altobelli’s UNCOMFORTABLE SILENCE, featuring Brian Kelly, Deborah Twiss and Samantha Scaffidi, which had its World Premiere as part of John’s tribute to the late great legend Ben Gazzara at the Soho International Film Festival at Sunshine Cinemas in New York. UNCOMFORTABLE SILENCE was also invited to the Metrage Section of the Cannes Film Festival, Internationales Filmfest Oldenburg (called by the trades the European Sundance), the Paris International Film Festival, and the Madrid Film Festival. John also produced and cast Gabriele’s feature directorial debut AMERICAN FANGO, a multiple award-winner featuring Samantha Scaffidi, Brian Kelly, Kohl Beck, and in a rare acting role, John himself, currently n DVD and all platforms from Vision Films/Sony Pictures Home Entertainment.
As an educator, John has been on the faculty of One on One NYC, the top actors’ networking facility in Manhattan, for 25 years, teaching acting for the camera; and The School of Visual Arts teaching the Advanced Directing Workshop. He taught film acting at The Neighborhood Playhouse for five years and has taught and lectured extensively at schools, seminars and international film festivals on screenwriting, filmmaking, film acting, improvisation and film history, including The Learning Annex, Actors’ Alliance, Writers Book Camp, Shetler Studios and Susan Batson Studios. He recently was a guest lecturer at the Museum of Modern Art.
John wrote and directed the acclaimed five-minute short I LOVE YOU (featuring 75 actors), which premiered at the Internationales Filmfest Oldenburg in Germany, and directed EXPATRIATE, starring Christina Gooding, awarded Best Film at the Atlantic City Short Film Festival (where he was also honored with a retrospective of his short works). John also directed the New York segments of THE ARISTOFROGS, a trailer for Internationales Filmfest Oldenburg, featuring Stacy Keach, which screened in German cinemas, and the short comedy ACT, NATURALLY.
John wrote and directed the comedy short BEAUTIFUL, starring Lauren Schacher, which world premiered at Filmfest Oldenburg, and AND THE WINNER IS … starring Christina Broccolini, named Best Short at the Chashama Film Festival with Best Actress Awards at Chashama and Picturestart Film Festival, and was an official selection of Filmfest Oldenburg and the Ft. Lauderdale International Film Festival.
John served as a producer on the feature films THE INSURGENTS, starring John Shea, Michael Moseley, Juliette Marquis, Henry Simmons and Mary Stuart Masterson, which won the German Independence Award at Filmfest Oldenburg, Best Film at the Long Island International Film Expo, Best Screenplay at the Palm Beach Film Festival, an official selection at the Montreal Film Festival, the Edmonton Film Festival, and the HD Festival in Seoul, Sydney and London, with theatrical release from Allumination/ Slamdance; and MOTHER’S DAY MASSACRE, available on Itunes, featuring Heidi Kristoffer and the stars of three Sundance award-winning films. He is also executive producer on Marianne Hettinger’s feature MANGO TANGO, filmed in New York and Germany, winner of the Jury Prize at the 2009 Ventura Film Festival, and co-exec producer on Sylvia Caminer’s TANZANIA: A FRIENDSHIP JOURNEY, filmed in Africa, currently playing in theatrical release, winner of many awards including Best Film and Best Documentary at the Soho International Film Festival.
John produced and directed the improvisational romantic comedy CUPIDITY, which won the prize for Audience Award: Best Feature Film, as well as Best Actress (Michele Coniglio) and Best Supporting Actor (Jared Miller), at the New York Independent Film Festival. CUPIDITY was awarded Best Actor (James Gilmartin) at the Queens Film Festival, and was an official selection of Internationales Filmfest Oldenburg. Other features as writer-director include the comedy MEN LIE, winner of numerous international awards, selected for two dozen film festivals, including official U.S. selection of the prestigious Karlovy Vary Film Festival, with Frank Vincent, Aida Turturro, Catherine Scorsese, Michael Imperioli, and Nicholas Turturro; and the action picture STREET HUNTER (Columbia/Tri-Star), executive produced by Menahem Golan, with Steve James, John Leguizamo, Reb Brown, Frank Vincent, Richie Havens and Vincent Pastore. John’s short films as writer-director include PENANCE (Frank Vincent, Heather Matarazzo); VINNY D (Frank Vincent, Michael Imperioli, Tony Sirico); OTHER MEN’S WIVES (Denis Leary); and Kurt Vonnegut's LONG WALK TO FOREVER (Denis Leary).
John was an Executive Producer on the feature film drama ANIMAL ROOM (Smart Egg), Amanda Peet’s first feature, starring Matthew Lillard, Neil Patrick Harris and Catherine Hicks; and the feature comedy HIGH TIMES’ POTLUCK (Allumination), starring Jason Isaacs, Dan Lauria, Sylvia Miles, and Frank Gorshin. John was also heavily involved in publicity and promotion for EVIL DEAD (as well as post-production) and EVIL DEAD 2: DEAD BY DAWN, two classic horror movies directed by and starring his former roommates/horror icons Sam Raimi and Bruce Campbell.
In the New York theatre, John directed the plays “East of Evil,” starring Frank Vincent, Tony Sirico and Vincent Pastore; “Punk City,” starring Ronald Maccone; and “Unspeakable Ways,” starring Tony Sirico, all produced at the West Bank Theatre in Manhattan; and “Screenwriters Night” and “Screenwriters Night II” at the SVA Theatre. He directed “Five Women Wearing the Same Dress” by Alan Ball (TRUE BLOOD, SIX FEET UNDER, AMERICAN BEAUTY) at the Duo Theatre.
John is the author of Film Directors on Directing (a collection of his interviews with such filmmakers as Francois Truffaut, Dennis Hopper, Ted Kotcheff, Alan Parker, and Wim Wenders), Nothing Sacred: The Cinema of William Wellman, and Hollywood’s Forgotten Master: The Life and Times of Tay Garnett, the definitive books on the legendary directors. He also co-authored the book Gregory LaCava, commissioned by the Filmoteca Espanol and the San Sebastian Film Festival for a retrospective on the veteran Hollywood filmmaker; the foreword to the book featured John’s interview with Katharine Hepburn. His articles on films and filmmaking have appeared in many magazines, including Rolling Stone, American Cinematographer, Moviemaker, Film International, Films in Review, and Millimeter. He has written dozens of articles on the horror genre for Fangoria, Cinemacabre and Videoscope.
John has appeared on-screen in the feature documentaries, WILD BILL: HOLLYWOOD MAVERICK, JOHN CASSAVETES: A CONSTANT FORGE, THE TUE ADVENTURES OF RAOUL WALSH, KATZ’S: THAT’S ALL, and THE LEGEND OF THE FOREIGN LEGION. He contributed the DVD audio commentary for William Wellman’s HEROES FOR SALE on Warner Bros. Home Video’s FORBIDDEN HOLLYWOOD Vol. 3. He is also the New York programmer for Internationales Filmfest Oldenburg, the top indie fest in Europe, and has lectured on filmmaking and film history at international festivals and universities, New York City’s Film Forum, and The Museum of Modern Art.
CRITICS COMMENT ON JOHN GALLAGHER'S FILMS
"A touching portrait of a marriage" -- Stephen Holden, New York Times
"BLUE MOON has charm and wisdom" -- Kevin Thomas, Los Angeles Times
"Sweet and intimate ... poignant and unusual ... the acting is compelling"
-- Jeffrey Lyons, WNBC-TV
"Heartfelt, passionate and touching ... shines with wit, charm and tenderness"
-- Bill Diehl, ABC Radio
"Sublime! Two great performances from Ben Gazzara and Rita Moreno"
-- Rex Reed, New York Observer
"A magnificent and beautifully crafted masterpiece ... Gallagher has shown his great talent for thoughtful and inspired human stories again and again"
-- Diabolo (Germany)
"A brilliant blend of Truffaut and Fellini, with a little Cassavetes and a sprinkling of Woody Allen, yet at the same time it is a unique and highly original film"
-- Nordwest (Germany)
"If you love THE SOPRANOS, you'll love THE DELI" -- Joe Kane, NY Daily News
"An engaging and funny romp" -- Jeffrey Lyons, WNBC-TV
"Vivid and authentic" -- Frank Scheck, Hollywood Reporter
"A charmer ... boasting not a false move, the comedy scores with its offbeat likeability and perfect pacing"
-- Lloyd Sachs, Chicago Sun-Times
"A refreshing, delightful comedy" -- Kris DeForest, Austin Chronicle
"An hilarious, original screwball comedy" -- D. Carson, St. Louis Post-Dispatch
"A comedy jewel" -- Mox (Germany)
"Magical ... delicious" -- Nordwest Zeitung (Germany)
"Gallagher proves a sure hand" -- Weiser Kurier (Germany)
"Compelling... humorously directed" -- Neues Deutschland (Germany)
"Smartly written and cleverly constructed ... informed observations on the war between the sexes"
-- Joe Leydon, Variety
"Sharp insights and caustic wit ... Both sexes will love this provocative, good-natured comedy, which makes for a perfect date movie ... It also leaves you looking for more from this obviously talented filmmaker"
-- Rene Rodriguez, Miami Herald
"Fast, funny, biting ... a sharp-edged satire of intolerance"
-- Houston Chronicle
"An hilarious, fast-paced comedy with a fresh point of view"
-- Prague Telegraf
"See this movie if you're a woman and have been lied to by men, or if you're a man who's ever lied to a woman. That should cover everyone"
-- A.J. Benza, New York Daily News
"A must for action buffs" -- Phantom of the Movies, New York Daily News
"Well-paced direction from Gallagher" -- Larry Cohn, Variety
"A relentless, high-powered thriller" -- Video Event
"Gallagher knows how to pack a movie with off-the-wall people and lends the proceedings a flair and humor that jack things up a notch or two"
-- Frank Thompson, Apprise
LONG WALK TO FOREVER
"Faithful adaptation of the Vonnegut story, beautifully filmed, stylishly directed"
-- American Classic Screen
"The least obnoxious jiggle caper of the decade" -- New York Daily News
"A classic" -- Joe Bob Briggs
“Funny and charming … Strong comedic performances” -- Tail Slate
“Comic gold …” -- Film Threat
“Quirky, loose and surprising” -- Film Crash
“Wall to wall with talented new faces … An entertaining and successful experiment in romantic comedy” -- Films in Review
“Writer/Director/Producer John Gallagher has managed to top himself. After great independent films like Men Lie, Blue Moon,
and The Deli, he's come up with Cupidity, a mockumentary on dating. Gallagher's expert casting has brought to life every nuance
of insanity one encounters while trying to find the perfect mate. Must-see great entertainment!!!” -- Comedy Matters
“John Gallagher is a well known name among independent filmmakers, a director with a big heart, a love for clever stories, and affection for good character acting. His love comedy Cupidity is a masterpiece of improvisation, an impressive piece of
indie cinema.” -- Filmfest Oldenburg, Germany
Directed by JOHN GALLAGHER – AWARDS AND FESTIVALS (partial)
Big Pride LA
Best Actor (Kohl Beck)
Hang Onto Your Shorts Film Festival
Best Director/Short (John Gallagher), Best Actor (Kohl Beck),
Best Supporting Actor (Artie Pasquale), Best LGBT Short
Best Director (John Gallagher), Best Actor (Artie Pasquale)
Brightside Tavern Film Festival
Rincon International Film Festival Puerto Rico
Award of Excellence:
Best LGBT; Best Supporting Actor (Artie Pasquale);
Best Supporting Actress (Christine Campbell)
Award of Merit:
Best Short; Best Direction (John Gallagher); Best Lead Actor (Kohl Beck)
Best Shorts Competition
Indie Spirit Award, Excellence in Producing (Katelyn Pearce, Chris Campbell, Kohl beck, Kay Van Norton), Best Screenplay/Short
(TJ Clark), Best Musical Score/Short (Jarryd Steimer) Idyllwild International Festival of Cinema
Best Short, Best Cinematography (Snyder Derival)
Brightside Tavern Film Festival
Best Short, Best Director (John Gallagher), Best Actor (Kohl Beck, Artie Pasquale),
Best Ensemble (Kohl Beck, Artie Pasquale, Chris Campbell, Katelyn Pearce, TJ Clark)
Hang Onto Your Shorts Film Festival
Best Dramatic Short, Best Director (John Gallagher)
Best Actor (Kohl Beck), Best Actress (Chris Campbell)
Los Angeles Independent Film Festival
Internationales Filmfest Oldenburg
International Film Festival for Peace, Inspiration and Equality
Northeast Film Festival
Teadance Gay and Lesbian Film Festival
Indie Street Film Festival
North Carolina Gay & Lesbian Film Festival
Orlando Film Festival
Las Vegas Lift-Off Film Festival
USA Independent Film Festival
New York Eurasian Film Festival
New Hope Film Festival
Lighthouse International Film Festival
Long Island International Film Expo
Garden State Film Festival
Soho International Film Festival
NYLA International Film Festival
Hang On To Your Shorts Film Festival
Los Angeles Independent Film Festival
Idyllwild International Festival of Cinema
Brightside Tavern Film Festival
Best Shorts Competition
Bronx International Film Festival
University of Oregon Queer Film Festival
RapidLion: The South African International Film Festival
Hollywood Sky Film Festival
US Hollywood International Film Festival
Big Pride LA Film Festival
I LOVE YOU
Official Selection, Filmfest Oldenburg September 2011, Orlando Film Festival October 2011, Atlantic City Intl. Film Festival November 2011, Soho Intl. Film Festival April 2012, Ridgewood Guild Film Festival April 2012, Long Island International Film and Video Expo July 2012.
Best Film, Atlantic City Short Film Festival, April 2010. Official Selection, Filmfest Oldenburg, September 2010.
Official Selection, Filmfest Oldenburg, September 2009, Chashama Film Festival, NYC October 2009.
AND THE WINNER IS …
Jury Award, Best Short Film - Chashama Film Festival
Audience Award, Best Actress (Christina Broccolini) – Chashama Film Festival
Audience Award, Best Actress (Christina Broccolini) – Picturestart Film Festival
Official Selection: Fimfest Oldenburg (Germany), Ft. Lauderdale Intl. Film Fest.
Audience Award Best Feature Film – New York Independent Film Festival
Best Actress (Michele Coniglio) – New York Independent Film Festival
Best Supporting Actor (Jared Miller) – New York Independent Film Festival
Best Actor (James Gilmartin) – Queens Film Festival
Festivals: Oldenburg (Germany).
Best Film & Best Actress (Natalie Howe) – NYC Home Film Festival
21st Century Filmmaker Award, Best American Feature (Audience Award), Avignon-New York Film Festival;
Gold Award, Best Feature, Fantasy Category, Worldfest Houston;
People's Choice Award/Best Actress (Rita Moreno)/Rising Star Award (Brian Vincent), Narrowsburg Independent Film Festival.
Festivals: Palm Springs (California), Sedona (Arizona), Worldfest Houston, Avignon/New York, Avignon/France, Wine Country (California), Narrowsburg (NY), Oldenburg (Germany), Ft. Lauderdale (Florida), Italian-American Film Festival (New York).
Festivals: Oldenburg (Germany), Hamptons Summer Shorts, NYC Home.
Festivals: South by Southwest (Austin), Nantucket, Denver, Mill Valley, Florida (Orlando), Hudson Valley, St. Louis, Ft. Lauderdale, Oldenburg (Germany), New York Comedy Film Festival.
Best Independent Feature, Worldfest Houston; Best Feature, Audience Award, Florida Film Festival; Special Audience Award, Ft. Lauderdale Intl. Film Festival; Best Comedy, Charleston Film Festival; Official U.S. Selection in Competition, Karlovy Vary Film Festival.
Festivals: Montreal, Hamburg, Oldenburg, Sao Paulo, Istanbul, Karlovy Vary (Czech Republic), Houston, Florida (Orlando), Ft. Lauderdale, Charleston (SC), Cleveland, Laguna Beach (California).
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