Naomi Foner Gyllenhaal

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Naomi Foner Gyllenhaal
Born Naomi Achs
(1946-03-04) March 4, 1946 (age 69)
New York City, New York
Nationality American
Alma mater Barnard College
Occupation Screenwriter
Spouse(s) Eric Foner (ex-husband),
Stephen Gyllenhaal
(1977–2009; divorced)
Children Maggie Gyllenhaal,
Jake Gyllenhaal

Naomi Gyllenhaal (née Achs, previously Foner; born March 4, 1946) is an American screenwriter. She has written the screenplays for several feature films, including Running on Empty (for which she received an Academy Award nomination for Best Original Screenplay and won a Golden Globe Award for the same category), Losing Isaiah, and most recently Bee Season. She played the character Naomi in the Love of Chair segment of The Electric Company, where she was an associate producer for two seasons. In 2013, she made her directorial debut with Very Good Girls, starring Dakota Fanning and Elizabeth Olsen, which premiered at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival before attaining online and theatrical distribution in the U.S. with Tribeca Film. She is currently collaborating on a script for a American-Chinese co-production titled Moon Flower and the Flying Tigers.

Personal life[edit]

Gyllenhaal was born Naomi Achs in New York City, the daughter of doctors Ruth (born Silbowitz) and Samuel Achs. Her aunt was Freda (Silbowitz) Hertz (1915-2013), a lawyer.[1][2][3] She was raised in a family of "high-achieving New York Jews".[4] Her grandparents immigrated from Eastern Europe (Russia and Poland).[5] She attended Barnard College in New York City, graduating with a BA degree in English. She later earned an MA degree in Developmental Psychology from Columbia University.

She has been married twice; both marriages ended in divorce. Her first husband was Eric Foner, a historian and Columbia University professor. Her second husband was film director Stephen Gyllenhaal, to whom she was married for 32 years. They have collaborated professionally. The couple's two children are actors Maggie and Jake Gyllenhaal. They have two granddaughters, Ramona (b. 2006) and Gloria (b. 2012), children of Maggie and her husband Peter Sarsgaard.


  1. ^ "Paid Notice: Deaths ACHS, ROBERT". The New York Times. 2005-07-03. Retrieved 2009-12-12. 
  2. ^ "DR. RUTH ACHS, 48, PEDIATRICIAN,DIES". The New York Times. 1968-09-29. Retrieved 2009-12-12. 
  3. ^ Freda Silbowitz Obituary retrieved 3/8/2015
  4. ^ "A New York Times Sponsored Archive: Bee Season". The New York Times. 
  5. ^ Stated on Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates, Jr., PBS, April 22, 2012

External links[edit]