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Metcalfe's first produced screenplay was Jacknife. Based on his Off-Broadway play, Strange Snow, it starred Robert De Niro, Ed Harris and Cathy Bates and was directed by David Jones. The adaptation of French director Jean-Charles Tacchella's Cousin, cousine soon followed. Produced by Paramount Pictures, Cousins was directed by Joel Schumacher.
Metcalfe has adapted both stage plays and novels. His play Emily was done for Scott Rudin and Paramount Pictures; Time Flies, by Paul Linke, was adapted for producer Laura Ziskin; A.R. Gurney’s The Old Boy was written for Touchstone Pictures; and Peter Mayle's comic novel Anything Considered was done for producer Stanley R. Jaffe and Sony Pictures.
In 2002 Metcalfe wrote and directed the independent film Beautiful Joe.
Metcalfe's stage plays include Loves & Hours, Vikings, Strange Snow, Sorrows and Sons, Pilgrims, Half a Lifetime, Emily, White Linen, Divirtimenti, The Incredibly Famous Willy Rivers, and White man Dancing. His new play The Tragedy of the Commons will premiere in January 2011 at Cygnet Theatre Company in San Diego.