Sam Harper

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Sam Harper
Residence California
Nationality American
Occupation filmmaker, screenwriter
Years active 1993–present
Notable work Just Married[1]
Home town New York City
Children three boys

Sam Harper is an American filmmaker.[2]


Blue Lagoon in Port Antonio, Jamaica. Harper performed here as a youth.

Harper was born into an artistic family with a father who was a painter and a mother who was a writer. While a youth during a vacation to Port Antonio, Jamaica, he performed with his brothers and friends the Beatles song A Hard Day's Night at the Blue Lagoon. After college, he worked as a reporter and associate editor for the advertising industry trade publication Advertising Age in New York City before coming to California to work as a story analyst.[3] Harper's primary role has been a screenwriter but he has been a director and producer as well. Many of Harper's films have received mixed to neutral reviews from film critics[4][5][6] but have been highly profitable at the box office in terms of gross receipts.[3][7][8][9][10][11] He is perhaps best known for the 2003 romantic comedy film Just Married starring Ashton Kutcher and Brittany Murphy which achieved neutral to negative reviews[1][4][12] but which had substantial profitability.[7][8] Harper based the story, in part, on his own self-declared less-than-idyllic honeymoon in Italy with his wife.[1][12] Harper worked with Jamie Foxx on Rio, Martin Lawrence on Open Season, Bonnie Hunt on Cheaper by the Dozen 2, David Moscow on Just Married, and Bonnie Hunt on Cheaper by the Dozen.[2] He has loosely drawn characters in his screenplays from experiences involving his family members.[12][13]

Harper is the son of painter and advertising agency chairman of Needham Harper Worldwide Paul Harper Jr., and has five siblings including actress Jessica Harper, composer William Harper, illustrator Lindsay Harper duPont, Rev. Charles Harper and Diana Harper. He is the father of three boys.

Film projects[edit]

Sam Harper Filmography
Year Film Medium Role(s) Budget Earnings Notes
1993 Rookie of the Year Film Screenwriter $53,579,269 [2][3][10][14]
2003 Cheaper by the Dozen Film Screenwriter $40,000,000 $190,212,113 [2][11]
2003 Just Married Film Screenwriter $18,000,000 $101,564,935 [1][2][4][7][8]
2005 Cheaper by the Dozen 2 Film Screenwriter $82,569,532 [2][3][6][15]
2006 Open Season Film Screenwriter [2]
2007 The Last Day of Summer TV movie Executive producer [2]
2009 House Broken Film Screenwriter, director Earlier title No place like home[2][16][17]
2011 Rio Film Screenwriter $90,000,000 $141,932,576 [2][5][9][18][19]
Overparenting Screenwriter (in development)[2]
The Jetsons Screenwriter (in development)[2]
In Harm's Way Screenwriter (in development)[2]


  1. ^ a b c d Barbara Vancheri, Post-Gazette Staff Writer (January 10, 2003). "'Just Married,' just cute". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Retrieved July 27, 2011. The romantic comedy "Just Married" was inspired by screenwriter Sam Harper's less-than-idyllic honeymoon in Italy 15 years ago. ... 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m "Filmography – Sam Harper". The New York Times. July 27, 2011. Retrieved July 27, 2011. 
  3. ^ a b c d "The art of writing and making films: CHEAPER BY THE DOZEN 2". The Writing Studio. 2003. Retrieved July 27, 2011. SAM HARPER (Writer) co-wrote the screenplay for the 2003 "Cheaper by the Dozen" and wrote the box-office hit "Just Married"; ... writing the comedy "Rookie of the Year." A box-office hit, the film struck a cord with baseball fans everywhere, grossing $53 million domestically. Harper was previously a story analyst for a major studio and before that an associate editor for Advertising Age magazine in New York. 
  4. ^ a b c A. O. SCOTT (January 10, 2003). "Just Married (2003) – FILM REVIEW; For Better and for Worse, Worse, Worse, as the European Honeymoon Gets Hairy". The New York Times. Retrieved July 27, 2011. The director, Shawn Levy, and the screenwriter, Sam Harper, hardly overtax themselves, contriving to make these young lovers bump into as many walls and doors as possible to wring laughs from a feeble premise. ... 
  5. ^ a b BETSY SHARKEY – FILM CRITIC (2011). "Highflying family fun". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved July 27, 2011. The story...series of screenwriters including Don Rhymer, Joshua Sternin and Jeffrey Ventimilia, and Sam Harper. ... 
  6. ^ a b Roger Ebert (film critic) (December 21, 2005). "Cheaper by the Dozen 2". Chicago Sun Times (& Retrieved July 27, 2011. ... However, it is unnecessary at a higher level of warmth and humor than the recent remake "Yours, Mine and Ours." And it has more plausible parents, even though neither actor, so far as I know, has any children. ... Written by Sam Harper. 
  7. ^ a b c "Just Married (2003)". Internet Movie Database (IMDb). July 27, 2011. Retrieved July 27, 2011. Box Office Budget: $18,000,000 (estimated) Opening Weekend: $17,548,993 (USA) (12 January 2003) (2766 Screens) Gross: $101,564,935 (Worldwide) 
  8. ^ a b c "Cheaper by the Dozen 2 (2005)". Internet Movie Database (IMDb). July 27, 2011. Retrieved July 27, 2011. Opening Weekend: $15,340,679 (USA) (25 December 2005) (3175 Screens) Gross: $82,569,532 (USA) (30 April 2006) 
  9. ^ a b "Rio (2011)". Internet Movie Database (IMDb). 2011. Retrieved July 27, 2011. Budget: $90,000,000 (estimated) Opening Weekend: £1,515,853 (UK) (10 April 2011) (522 Screens) Gross: $141,932,576 (USA) (17 July 2011) 
  10. ^ a b "Rookie of the Year (1993)". Internet Movie Database (IMDb). 1993. Retrieved July 27, 2011. Gross: $53,579,269 (USA) 
  11. ^ a b "Cheaper by the Dozen (2003)". Internet Movie Database (IMDb). 2003. Retrieved July 27, 2011. Budget: $40,000,000 (estimated) Opening Weekend: $27,557,647 (USA) (28 December 2003) (3298 Screens) Gross: $190,212,113 (Worldwide) 
  12. ^ a b c Mark Deming, Rovi All Movie Guide (2007). "Just Married (overview & review)". Miami Herald. Retrieved July 27, 2011. Just Married was written by Sam Harper, who claims to have loosely based the script on his own experiences on an ill-starred European honeymoon with his wife; fortunately, the couple's marriage survived the experience. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi All Movie Guide 
  13. ^ Mitchell Fink (July 27, 1992). "The Insider". People Magazine. Retrieved July 27, 2011. vol. 38, no. 4, ... yet untitled baseball story about an 11-year-old boy who ends up pitching for the Chicago Cubs. ... (Screenwriter Sam Harper dubbed the character after his own son Henry, 4.) 
  14. ^ Mark Caro (July 7, 1993). "A Big-league Strikeout". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved July 27, 2011. As written by Sam Harper and directed by actor Daniel Stern ("Home Alone," "Diner"), "Rookie" skimps on the fun nitty-gritty that would be involved in a boy's joining a major-league team. 
  15. ^ Robert K. Elder (June 15, 2007). "Review for 'Cheaper by the Dozen 2'". Chicago Tribune (via Miami Herald). Retrieved July 27, 2011. Director Adam Shankman's "Cheaper by the Dozen 2" is a harmless, inoffensive bit of family programming during the holiday season.... Directed by Adam Shankman; screenplay by Sam Harper. 
  16. ^ Gail Schiller, AP (August 10, 2007). "Video sharer casts itself in 'Home' movie". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved July 27, 2011. The indie comedy "Home" ... was written and directed by Sam Harper, who wrote and co-wrote "Just Married" and "Cheaper by the Dozen." It's about a father (DeVito) who in order to enjoy his retirement takes drastic measures to get his twentysomething slacker sons to move out... 
  17. ^ Mike Bruno (June 18, 2007). "DeVito tapped for indie comedy". Variety. Retrieved July 27, 2011. Danny DeVito will star in the indie comedy No Place Like Home for Capactiy Pictures. The story is about a recently retired fireman whose plans for a nice, quiet life are ruined by his unemployed 20-something sons w... Sam Harper will direct from his own script. ... 
  18. ^ Richard Corliss (April 14, 2011). "Rio: Birds of a Fabulous Feather". Time Magazine. Retrieved July 27, 2011. One of the kidnapped avians is an infant blue macaw named Blu (voiced by The Social Network's Jesse Eisenberg). In the script by Don Rhymer, Sam Harper,... 
  19. ^ Michael Phillips – Movie critic (April 14, 2011). "Blame it on constant chaos: Near-perpetual peril and serial kidnappings make it difficult to enjoy movie's tropical vibe". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved July 27, 2011. Credits: Directed by Carlos Saldanha; written by Don Rhymer, Joshua Sternin, Jeffrey Ventimilia and Sam Harper; 

External links[edit]