Batman & Robin: About The Filmmakers

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Director JOEL SCHUMACHER is one of America's most vigorous, talented and successful filmmakers. His last three films -- the acclaimed film versions of John Grisham's The Client and A Time to Kill and the most recent adventures of Gotham City's Dark Knight, Batman Forever -- each grossed in excess of $100 million with domestic audiences alone, and Batman Forever achieved the distinction of being the highest grossing film of 1995.

Schumacher's features have displayed the filmmaker's versatility and close attention to performance, nuance and atmosphere. St. Elmo's Fire was an ensemble drama that made stars of such young players as Emilio Estevez, Rob Lowe, Ally Sheedy, Andrew McCarthy and Demi Moore; The Lost Boys, starring Jason Patric and Kiefer Sutherland, successfully combined fantastical imagery, comedy and very contemporary horror; Cousins was a tender romantic comedy starring Ted Danson, Isabella Rossellini and Sean Young; Flatliners, toplining Kiefer Sutherland, Julia Roberts, Kevin Bacon and Oliver Platt, was a stylish, surrealistic story of science and spirituality; Dying Young reunited Schumacher and Julia Roberts in an unflinching love story; and Falling Down, starring Michael Douglas, was a gritty, controversial and timely story of social disorder.

Schumacher's two hit adaptations of John Grisham's best-sellers have been hailed as the best of the author's work to be translated to film: The Client, starring Susan Sarandon and Tommy Lee Jones, and 1996's summer smash, A Time to Kill, which introduced Matthew McConaughey in a star-making role alongside such accomplished players as Sandra Bullock, Samuel L. Jackson, Kevin Spacey, Oliver Platt, Kiefer Sutherland, Brenda Fricker, Charles S. Dutton, Ashley Judd, Patrick McGoohan and Donald Sutherland.

Schumacher was born and raised in New York City, where he studied design and display at the Parsons School of Design. He began his career in the entertainment industry as an art director for television commercials before becoming costume designer for such notable films as Woody Allen's Sleeper and Interiors, Herbert Ross' The Last of Sheila and Paul Mazursky's Blume in Love. He then wrote the screenplays for the Motown-inflected musical Sparkle and the funk-driven hit comedy Car Wash. Schumacher made his directing debut with the television movie The Virginia Hill Story, followed by his award-winning telefilm Amateur Night at the Dixie Bar and Grill. The Incredible Shrinking Woman, starring Lily Tomlin, marked his feature-film directing debut, followed by D.C. Cab, for which he also wrote the screenplay. Schumacher also wrote the script for St. Elmo's Fire with Carl Kurlander. In 1988, Schumacher directed the successful Chicago theatrical run of David Mamet's scorching Hollywood satire, Speed-the-Plow.

Producer PETER MACGREGOR-SCOTT segued into preparatory stages of Batman & Robin right on the heels of the massively successful Batman Forever, which he also produced. In 1993, he co-produced Warner Bros.' action blockbuster and Best Picture Oscar nominee The Fugitive, starring Harrison Ford and, in his Oscar-winning performance, Tommy Lee Jones.

Macgregor-Scott moved to the United States from his native England in 1970. He produced his first film, Ride the Tiger, that same year. Working his way through the ranks of the industry, Macgregor-Scott produced two hit films starring the comedy team of Cheech & Chong (Cheech & Chong Still Smokin', Cheech & Chong's The Corsican Brothers), as well as Born in East L.A. His other early credits include Cheech & Chong's Next Movie, The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas, Revenge of the Nerds, Gotcha! and Troop Beverly Hills.

He co-produced three films starring action star Steven Seagal: Marked for Death, Out for Justice and the highly successful Under Siege. Macgregor-Scott also produced Warner Bros.' critically acclaimed Black Beauty, adapted for the screen and directed by Caroline Thompson.

Screenwriter AKIVA GOLDSMAN collaborates with director Joel Schumacher for the fourth time on Batman & Robin, having previously written or co-written The Client, Batman Forever and A Time to Kill, all of them huge summer hits in consecutive years.

Goldsman has been much in demand since his first script, Silent Fall, was filmed by Bruce Beresford. Born in Brooklyn Heights, New York, and raised in New York City, Goldsman is the son of two prominent child psychologists who work with autistic children and who founded the Blueberry Treatment Centers. Goldsman graduated from Wesleyan University and earned his graduate degree in creative writing from New York University.

Next for Goldsman is his cinematic adaptation of the hit television science-fiction adventure Lost in Space, under the direction of Stephen Hopkins.

Executive producers BENJAMIN MELNIKER and MICHAEL E. USLAN served as executive producers on Batman, Batman Returns and Batman Forever and as producers on the animated feature Batman: Mask of the Phantasm.

Melniker and Uslan executive produced, with DIC Entertainment, the Fox Network cartoon show Where on Earth is Carmen Sandiego?, which was nominated for four Emmy Awards, including Best Animated Series. The team also executive produced the movie-of-the-week Robin Cook's Harmful Intent; the critically acclaimed PBS mini-series Three Sovereigns for Sarah; the animated series Dinosaucers and Fish Police; the live-action television series, animated series and two feature films based on the popular DC Comics character Swamp Thing; and Little Orphan Annie's Very Animated Christmas.

Currently, Melniker and Uslan are preparing an upcoming live-action feature film based on Carmen Sandiego with DIC Enterprises and Terry and the Pirates, a live-action weekly series.

Before he became partners with Michael Uslan, Benjamin Melniker served with MGM for 30 years in various capacities, leading to his position as executive vice president of the company and a member of its Board of Directors. He was also executive producer of the features Mitchell and Shoot.

Michael Uslan is an authority on comic-book history who taught the first accredited college course on comic books, at Indiana University in 1971. He is the author of 12 books on comic books and pop culture, including The Comic Book in America, The Comic Book Revolution and Dick Clark's The First 25 Years of Rock and Roll. Uslan also scripted stories for DC Comics' Batman and The Shadow, and wrote the internationally syndicated comic strip "Terry and the Pirates." A former member of the Youth Grants Panel of The National Endowment for the Humanities, he is currently on the Board of Trustees of The Center for Excellence in Education, Washington, D.C., The Thomas Edison Media Arts Consortium and Black Maria Film Festival.

Co-producer WILLIAM M. ELVIN previously worked with Joel Schumacher as associate producer/first assistant director of A Time to Kill and in the latter capacity on Batman Forever. Elvin was also associate producer of My Life and Sneakers and unit production manager of The Man in the Moon.

Elvin's numerous credits as first assistant director include Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls, The Santa Clause, City Slickers II: The Legend of Curly's Gold, The Sandlot, Memoirs of an Invisible Man, Joe Versus the Volcano, Field of Dreams, Midnight Run, Against All Odds, Taps and True Confessions.

Director of photography STEPHEN GOLDBLATT received an Academy Award nomination for his dazzling work on Batman Forever.

Goldblatt began his career as a still photographer and documentarian, working on a variety of documentaries in England before turning to feature films.

Also Oscar-nominated for his work on The Prince of Tides, Goldblatt includes among his credits Striptease, The Pelican Brief, Consenting Adults, For the Boys, Everybody's All-American, Lethal Weapon, Lethal Weapon 2, The Cotton Club, The Hunger and "Outland.

Production designer BARBARA LING launched into her work for Batman & Robin after completing Batman Forever.

Ling began her career in theater, designing sets and lighting for nearly 200 productions, including Women Behind Bars in Los Angeles and San Francisco and Beyond Therapy at the Los Angeles Public Theatre. Among her other stage credits are productions of Romeo and Juliet, A Winter's Tale, Bent, Extremities, James Joyce's Women and Two By Brecht.

A Los Angeles native, Ling received a degree in political science from the University of California, Los Angeles, before embarking on a career in design. She began her movie career working on various short subjects with Diane Keaton, which led to her first feature, Heaven, Keaton's directorial debut.

Ling's other motion-picture production design credits include True Stories, Making Mr. Right, Checking Out, Less Than Zero, Men Don't Leave, The Doors, V.I. Warshawski, Fried Green Tomatoes and With Honors. She previously collaborated with Joel Schumacher on Falling Down.

Along with her film and stage work, Ling did the sets and lighting for numerous concert tours, among which was David Byrne's world tour in 1990. She also designed two environments for permanent exhibition at the Children's Museum in Los Angeles.

Editor DENNIS VIRKLER reunites with director Joel Schumacher, with whom he worked on Batman Forever. Virkler received Academy Award nominations for his work on The Hunt for Red October in 1990 and The Fugitive in 1993.

His first motion-picture editing credit was the 1976 horror film Burnt Offerings. Since then, he has cut such films as Continental Divide, Gorky Park, The River Rat, Under Siege and most recently, The Devil's Own, starring Harrison Ford and Brad Pitt.

Composer ELLIOT GOLDENTHAL marks his third collaboration with Joel Schumacher on Batman & Robin, having previously scored both Batman Forever, which earned him a Grammy nomination, and A Time to Kill.

Goldenthal has created works for orchestra, theater, opera and film. His score for Interview With The Vampire won him both a Golden Globe Award and an Oscar nomination for Best Original Score. He also created innovative scores for Michael Mann's Heat, which earned him a Best Score nomination from the Chicago Film Critics, and Neil Jordan's Michael Collins, for which he received another Academy Award nomination. His other film scores include Cobb, Gus Van Sant's Drugstore Cowboy and Fool's Fire, directed by Julie Taymor for American Playhouse.

Goldenthal's symphony, Fire Water Paper, a commemorative tribute created for the 20th anniversary of the end of the Vietnam War, was released in April, 1966, and recently received its East Coast debut in critically acclaimed performances in Boston, at New York's Carnegie Hall and at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C.

He collaborated in 1988 with stage director Julie Taymor on Juan Darien -- A Carnival Mass, for which they received Obie Awards. That same year, Goldenthal was commissioned to compose a work in celebration of Leonard Bernstein's 70th birthday. The piece, Shadow Play Scherzo, was performed by the Brooklyn Philarmonic Orchestra at New York's Town Hall. His other stage credits include the musical The Transposed Heads, The King Stag and Liberty's Taken. Goldenthal recently collaborated again with Julie Taymor on The Green Bird, which opened in New York to critical acclaim and reopened at the La Jolla Playhouse to equally strong reviews.

Goldenthal has created a trumpet concerto for Wynton Marsalis, in addition to a new version of Juan Darien, opening at the Vivian Beaumont Theater in New York. He has also been commissioned by American Ballet Theater to write a full-length ballet of Othello, to be choreographed by Lar Lubovitch for their 1997 season.

Goldenthal, a student of Aaron Copeland and John Corigliano, earned both his bachelor's and master's degrees in musical composition at the Manhattan School of Music. He has written extensively for full orchestra as well as chamber and vocal compositions. He has received the Arturo Toscanini Award, the New Music for Young Ensembles composition prize, the Stephen Sondheim Award in Music Theater and a New York Foundation for the Arts fellowship.

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