Claudia Weill

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Claudia Weill
Born1947 (age 73–74)
New York City, New York
Alma materHarvard University
OccupationFilm, television and theatre director, Film instructor
Spouse(s)Walter S. Teller

Claudia Weill is an American film director best known for her film Girlfriends (1978), starring Melanie Mayron, Christopher Guest, Bob Balaban and Eli Wallach, made independently and sold to Warner Brothers after multiple awards at Cannes, Filmex and Sundance. In 2019, Girlfriends was selected by the Library of Congress for preservation in the National Film Registry for being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant".[1]

It's My Turn (1980 for Columbia Pictures)—with Jill Clayburgh, Michael Douglas, and Charles Grodin—won her the Donatello, or International Oscar for best new director.

Earlier work includes 30 films for Sesame Street, freelancing as a camerawoman, and numerous documentaries, notably The Other Half of the Sky: A China Memoir, a documentary about the first women's delegation to China in 1973, headed by Shirley MacLaine, nominated for an Academy Award and released theatrically and on PBS.

Early life and education[edit]

In 1947, Weill was born in New York City. Weill's family was Jewish. [2] [3][4] In 1969, Weill graduated from Harvard University.[5]


Weill moved to Los Angeles in 1986. Weill began directing TV episodes of Thirtysomething, My So-Called Life, Once and Again, Chicago Hope, and numerous pilots. More recently, she directed an episode of Girls for HBO.

As a theater director (Williamstown, The O’Neill, Sundance, ACT, Empty Space and in New York at MTC, the Public, and Circle Rep), she won the Drama Desk's Best Director Award for the premiere of Donald Margulies’ Found a Peanut produced by Joe Papp at the Public Theater in 1984.

She directed The Belle of Belfast by Nate Rufus Edelman at EST and the Irish Repertory Theatre in New York, Twelfth Night for Antaeus, the West Coast Premiere of Pulitzer Prize winner Doubt by John Patrick Shanley (with Linda Hunt) at the Pasadena Playhouse, Memory House, End Days, Tape, numerous workshops of Modern Orthodox, Adam Baum and the Jew Movie (Goldfarb), The Parents' Evening by Bathsheba Doran at the Vineyard Playhouse, and Huck and Holden by Rajiv Joseph at the Black Dahlia, among others.

In 1979, the Supersisters trading card set was produced and distributed; one of the cards featured Weill's name and picture.[6]

Weill has taught directing for film, television and/or theater at Harvard, Juilliard, Cal Arts, USC Graduate School of Cinema Studies, Columbia, The New School and Sarah Lawrence College. She mentors playwrights and directors.[7]



This is a partial list of films credited as director:

Personal life[edit]

In 1985, Weill married Walter S. Teller. They have two sons, Sam Teller and Eli Teller.


  1. ^ Chow, Andrew R. (December 11, 2019). "See the 25 New Additions to the National Film Registry, From Purple Rain to Clerks". Time. New York, NY. Retrieved December 11, 2019.
  2. ^ Norwood, Stephen Harlan (2008). Encyclopedia of American Jewish History, Volume 1. ISBN 9781851096381. Retrieved February 23, 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  3. ^ Foster, Gwendolyn Audrey (1995). Women Film Directors: An International Bio-critical Dictionary. ISBN 9780313289729. Retrieved February 23, 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  4. ^ ICA: "About Girlfriends: Jemma Desai in conversation with Claudia Weill" by Jemma Desai 17 Apr 2014
  5. ^ Dooley, Megan (August 14, 2009). "From Big Screen to Small Stage, Claudia Weill Keeps it Real". The Vineyard Gazette. Retrieved February 1, 2018. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  6. ^ Wulf, Steve (March 23, 2015). "Supersisters: Original Roster". Retrieved June 4, 2015. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  7. ^ "Claudia Weill". Retrieved February 23, 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  8. ^ "Interview with Claudia Weill". October 20, 1980. Retrieved February 23, 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)

External links[edit]