Kinberg at the 2008 Screenwriting Expo
August 2, 1973 |
|Occupation||Screenwriter, film producer|
Simon Kinberg (born August 2, 1973) is an English-born American screenwriter and film producer. He is best known for his work in the X-Men film franchise, and wrote and/or produced several other box office successes such as Mr. & Mrs. Smith, Sherlock Holmes, This Means War, and Elysium.
He was born in London, England. He is Jewish. His family moved to the United States, and he was raised in Los Angeles, California. Kinberg attended Brentwood School in Los Angeles and graduated in 1991. He later graduated from Brown University, Phi Beta Kappa, Magna Cum Laude, and received his MFA from Columbia University Film School, where he won their highest screenwriting award.
While still in film school, Kinberg sold a pitch to Warner Brothers, then went on to write scripts for Disney, Sony, and DreamWorks, working with Steven Spielberg and Jerry Bruckheimer, among others. After finishing school, Kinberg moved to Hollywood, where his first screenwriting credit was a sequel to the hit action film xXx (2002), xXx: State of the Union. His next screenwriting venture was the screenplay for Mr. & Mrs. Smith.
Doug Liman's 2005 film Mr. & Mrs. Smith starred Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie. The script began as Kinberg's thesis project for film school. It went on to gross over $475 million worldwide, and won MTV Movie Awards and People's Choice Awards. Kinberg also wrote the pilot episode for a television adaptation of Mr. & Mrs. Smith for ABC TV. Kinberg also appears in the movie, in a scene with Brad PItt.
Kinberg's next screenwriting job was the highly anticipated sequel to X-Men (2000) and X2 (2003), X-Men: The Last Stand (2006), which he co-wrote with Zak Penn. The film made $102 million on its opening weekend, one of the biggest openings in history. Despite receiving mixed reviews, it went on to gross over $460 million worldwide, making it the most successful film in the franchise up to that point. Comic-book writer Chris Claremont wrote the novelization of the film, and made Kinberg a character in the book.
Kinberg reunited with director Doug Liman for the film Jumper (2008). Kinberg wrote and produced the movie, which stars Samuel L. Jackson, Hayden Christensen, and Diane Lane. The film opened number one at the box office on Presidents Day 2008. The film spawned a comic book and video game.
The following year, Kinberg was writer of Sherlock Holmes, directed by Guy Ritchie, starring Robert Downey, Jr. and Jude Law. The film was released by Warner Brothers on Christmas 2009 and set the record for the biggest opening weekend ($65 million) in Christmas history. Robert Downey, Jr. won a Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy for his portrayal of the famous detective. The film was nominated for several awards, including two nominations at the 82nd Academy Awards. The final worldwide gross for the film was over $520 million.
Kinberg was the producer of X-Men: First Class at 20th Century Fox, directed by Matthew Vaughn, starring James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, and Jennifer Lawrence. The film opened June 3, 2011, number one at the box office, with 87% positive reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, and grossed more than $350 million worldwide.
Kinberg was the writer and producer of the film This Means War, starring Reese Witherspoon, Chris Pine, and Tom Hardy, released February 17, 2012. He was also executive producer of the film Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter in that same year.
Most recently, Kinberg was the writer and the producer of the 2014 film X-Men: Days of Future Past, which unites the cast from all the X-Men films, including Hugh Jackman, Ian McKellen, Patrick Stewart, Halle Berry, Ellen Page, Jennifer Lawrence, Michael Fassbender, James McAvoy, Nicholas Hoult, and new members like Peter Dinklage and Omar Sy. The film was released to rave reviews, a 92% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, and an "A" Cinemascore from audiences. The film has grossed over 740 million dollars, and is widely considered the best film in the franchise. It marked Kinberg's 7th film to open number one at the box office.
That same year, he produced Let's Be Cops, which became a surprise summer hit.
Currently, Kinberg is producing the Neill Blomkamp film Chappie, starring Hugh Jackman, Sigourney Weaver, and Sharlto Copley. In addition, he is producing a live-action version of Cinderella at Disney directed by Kenneth Branagh, starring Cate Blanchett and Helena Bonham Carter. He is also working on Fantastic Four as the writer and producer, and he is writing and producing X-Men: Apocalypse, the next film in the X-Men franchise. In addition, Kinberg is producing The Martian, based on the eponymous novel, directed by Ridley Scott, starring Matt Damon, Jessica Chastain, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Kristen Wiig, Jeff Daniels, Kate Mara, among others. The film will be released on Thanksgiving 2015. Kinberg and Ridley Scott are also producing an adaptation of Agatha Christie's classic novel Murder on the Orient Express. Kinberg is also producing the live action Magic: The Gathering film.
In addition, Kinberg is very involved in the new Star Wars films. The Hollywood Reporter initially reported that Lawrence Kasdan, writer of Episode V and Episode VI, and Kinberg would write and produce Episode VIII and Episode IX of the new Star Wars films; a week later the publication stated that Kasdan and Kinberg would only be working on future Star Wars projects, but not necessarily on Episode VIII and Episode IX. In addition to working on the films, he is also the creator, writer, and executive producer of the new Star Wars Rebels animated series, which includes many of the original characters, and airs on the Disney networks.
Kinberg was an uncredited script doctor for many movies, including Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian (2009), Date Night (2010), Knight and Day (2010), Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows (2011) and Edge of Tomorrow (2014).
|2002||The Legacy||Yes||No||TV film|
|2005||XXX: State of the Union||Yes||No|
|Mr. & Mrs. Smith||Yes||No|
|2006||X-Men: The Last Stand||Yes||No|
|2007||Mr. & Mrs. Smith||Yes||No||TV adaptation of the feature film
also executive producer
|Go Next (short)||No||Yes||Short film|
|2011||X-Men: First Class||No||Yes|
|2012||This Means War||Yes||Yes|
|Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter||Yes||No||Also executive producer|
|2014||Let's Be Cops||No||Yes|
|X-Men: Days of Future Past||Yes||Yes|
|Star Wars Rebels (TV series)||Yes||No||Also executive producer|
|Big Hero 6||Yes||No||Also executive producer|
Awards and honors
In 2005, Simon received the Movieline magazine award for Screenwriter of the Year, and was named New Power Screenwriter of the Year by Premiere magazine. Kinberg's films have grossed over a billion dollars worldwide. Simon was awarded the commencement speaker for Brentwood School in Los Angeles in 2009.
- IGN Interviews Simon Kinberg - IGN. Movies.ign.com. Retrieved on 2013-08-25.
- Kit, Borys (October 1, 2013). "Simon Kinberg Tapped to Write 'Fantastic Four' (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter.
- Stern, Marlow (May 24, 2014). "Simon Kinberg on ‘X-Men: Days of Future Past,’ ‘The Fantastic Four’ Reboot, and Black Superheroes". The Daily Beast. Retrieved May 24, 2014.
- Fox to Bring 'Magic: The Gathering' to the Big Screen (Exclusive)
- Kit, Borys (November 20, 2012). "Sources: Lawrence Kasdan, Simon Kinberg Lock Deals to Write and Produce 'Star Wars' Installments". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved November 21, 2012.
- Kit, Borys (November 28, 2012). "Star Wars: How Writers Lawrence Kasdan and Simon Kinberg Will Expand the Galaxy". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved November 28, 2012.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Simon Kinberg.|
- Deadline Hollywood: Kinberg Production Deal
- The Dialogue: Learn from the Masters Interview
- Simon Kinberg at the Internet Movie Database
- Columbia University Interview
- London Standard Article