David Callaham

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David Callaham
BornDavid Elias Callaham
(1977-10-24) October 24, 1977 (age 45)
Fresno, California, U.S.
  • Screenwriter
  • film producer
Alma materUniversity of Michigan
Years active2003–present
Bree Tichy
(m. 2009)

David Elias Callaham (born October 24, 1977)[1] is an American screenwriter and producer.


Callaham was born in Fresno, California on October 24, 1977 to Lee Hsu and Michael Callaham. He has a brother, Gregory.[2] He is of Chinese descent through his mother.[3][4] He studied English at the University of Michigan and graduated in 1999.[5][6]

In 2009, Callaham married Bree Tichy.[7] They have at least one child.[8] He is a Brown Belt in 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu under Eddie Bravo.[9]


After reading an article in Penthouse magazine focusing on the lifestyle of Hollywood TV writers, Callaham and a friend moved to Los Angeles with plans to write comedies together. They sent query letters to multiple agencies but never received responses. Callaham worked at Creative Artists Agency for a while, sometimes submitting his material secretly for coverage.[10]

In 2003, Callaham wrote the film adaptation to the video game Doom and submitted it in the summer of 2005. Around that time, Callaham wrote Barrow for Warner Bros., a mercenary-inspired action script which later became The Expendables. Callaham was credited for story and characters after Sylvester Stallone used Callaham's Barrow script as a "starting point" for The Expendables.[11]

In 2010, Legendary Pictures hired Callaham to write the first draft for Godzilla, for which he received a story credit.[12]

In 2014, Callaham completed a production rewrite for Ant-Man, and in 2019, he co-wrote the Zombieland sequel, Zombieland: Double Tap, for Sony. He also worked on the yet-unproduced Jackpot for Focus Features and America: The Motion Picture for Netflix.[13][14]

In October 2016, Universal Pictures hired Callaham to rewrite The Wolf Man for their Dark Universe.[15] In September 2017, Patty Jenkins hired Callaham to write the script for Wonder Woman 1984 with her and Geoff Johns.[16]

In November 2018, Sony Pictures Animation hired Callaham to write a sequel to Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse.[17] The following month, Marvel Studios hired Callaham to write the screenplay for a film based on Shang-Chi.[18] The film was released on August 16, 2021.

In April 2020, Callaham was announced as the writer of Walt Disney Pictures' live-action remake of Hercules.[19] In June 2022, it was reported that he left the project.[20]

In January 2022, Callaham was announced to written the latest draft of screenplay of the Masters of the Universe reboot for Netflix, along with Aaron and Adam Nee.[21]


In late 2013, Nu Image and Millennium Films filed a lawsuit against Callaham and the Writers Guild of America West for fraud, unjust enrichment, and declaratory relief over a "flawed and misinformed" Guild arbitration that gave Callaham undeserved writing credit for The Expendables and The Expendables 2.

The plaintiffs accused Callaham of intentionally withholding emails and other correspondences from the WGA screenwriting credit arbitration panel in 2009 that reportedly reveal how very little Callaham was involved with The Expendables. They demanded reimbursements from Callaham for any payments made to him for his fradulent credit in the two films.[22] Callaham then asserted that Sylvester Stallone used his script, Barrow, as the source for The Expendables. A WGA arbitration was ignited in which Callaham won and additionally earned $102,250 in bonus payments. Stallone offered a sworn declaration that attested he had used Barrow as inspiration for his Expendables script.[23]



Year Film Credit Notes Ref(s)
2005 Doom Screenplay by/Story by Co-wrote with Wesley Strick [24]
2009 Horsemen Written by [25]
Tell-Tale Screenplay by [26]
2010 The Expendables Screenplay by/Story by Co-wrote with Sylvester Stallone [27]
2012 The Expendables 2 Based on
2014 Godzilla Story by [28]
2015 Ant-Man Production rewrite Uncredited [13]
2019 Zombieland: Double Tap Written by Co-wrote with Rhett Reese & Paul Wernick [29]
2020 Wonder Woman 1984 Screenplay by Co-wrote with Patty Jenkins & Geoff Johns; credited as Dave Callaham [30]
2021 Mortal Kombat Screenplay by Co-wrote with Greg Russo; credited as Dave Callaham [31]
America: The Motion Picture Producer/Written by Credited as Dave Callaham
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings Screenplay by/Story by Co-wrote with Destin Daniel Cretton and Andrew Lanham; credited as Dave Callaham [32]
2023 Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse Written by Co-wrote with Phil Lord and Christopher Miller [17]
TBA Hercules Screenplay by Credited as Dave Callaham [19]
Masters of the Universe Written by Co-wrote with Aaron and Adam Nee [21]


Year Film Credit Ref(s)
2016–2017 Jean-Claude Van Johnson Created by
Written by
Executive producer


  1. ^ "David E Callaham was born on October 24, 1977 in Fresno County, California". California Birth Index. California Office of Health Information and Research. Retrieved December 4, 2018.
  2. ^ "Participant Bios". Christina and Greg's Wedding. Retrieved 2021-09-04.
  3. ^ Francisco, Eric. "Shang-Chi writer: "America can be a very different country for different people."". Inverse. Retrieved 2021-09-04.
  4. ^ McNary, Dave (4 December 2018). "Marvel Studios Developing 'Shang-Chi' Movie With Dave Callaham Writing". Variety.
  5. ^ "Dave Callaham". IMDb.
  6. ^ Voices, Fresh. "SCREENWRITER PROFILE: DAVE CALLAHAM". www.fresh-voices.com. Retrieved 2021-09-04.
  7. ^ "A Vintage Wedding in Los Angeles, CA". theknot.com. Retrieved 2021-09-04.
  8. ^ "The Irresistible Allure of Shang-Chi Villain Tony Leung". Vanity Fair. 2021-09-03. Retrieved 2021-09-04.
  9. ^ "Eddie Bravo Radio". www.stitcher.com.
  10. ^ "Screenwriter Profile: David Callaham" (Interview). Fresh Voices. Retrieved October 27, 2014.
  11. ^ "Webb vs. Stallone" (PDF). United States District Court Southern District of New York. December 27, 2012. Retrieved October 21, 2014.
  12. ^ McWeeny, Drew (October 14, 2010). "Updated! Guillermo Del Toro on 'Godzilla'? Not so fast, says director". Hit Fix.
  13. ^ a b Fleming, Mike Jr. (September 30, 2014). "After Moving Slow As Corpse, 'Zombieland 2′ Gets Writer And Urgency". Deadline Hollywood.
  14. ^ Fleming, Mike Jr. (2017-03-30). "Netflix Sets First Animated Film 'America'; Channing Tatum Voicing George Washington". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 2017-04-03.
  15. ^ Ford, Rebecca (October 13, 2016). "Universal Taps 'The Expendables' Writer to Pen 'The Wolf Man' (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved August 26, 2018.
  16. ^ Kit, Borys (September 13, 2017). "'The Expendables' Writer Joins Patty Jenkins, Geoff Johns to Write 'Wonder Woman 2' (EXCLUSIVE)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 13 September 2017.
  17. ^ a b Vejvoda, Jim (November 29, 2018). "Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse Official Credits Reveal Surprise Voice Actor Cameos". IGN. Archived from the original on November 30, 2018. Retrieved December 15, 2018.
  18. ^ Fleming, Mike Jr. (December 3, 2018). "'Shang-Chi' Marvel's First Asian Film Superhero Franchise; Dave Callaham Scripting, Search On For Director Of Asian Descent". Deadline Hollywood.
  19. ^ a b Borys Kit (April 30, 2020). "'Hercules' Live-Action Remake in the Works From Disney, 'Shang-Chi' Writer (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Archived from the original on May 6, 2020. Retrieved May 6, 2020.
  20. ^ Fleming, Mike Jr. (June 17, 2022). "'Aladdin' Director Guy Ritchie Teams With Disney & AGBO On Live-Action 'Hercules'". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved September 26, 2022.
  21. ^ a b D'Alessandro, Anthony (2022-01-28). "'Masters Of The Universe' Live-Action Mattel Movie Heads To Netflix After Being In Development At Sony; Kyle Allen To Play He-Man". Deadline. Retrieved 2022-01-28.
  22. ^ Patten, Dominic (December 24, 2013). "WGA West & Scribe Sued For Fraud By Nu Image/Millennium Over 'Expendables' Credit". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved August 26, 2018.
  23. ^ Gardner, Eriq (January 30, 2014). "Sylvester Stallone's 'Expendables' Launches Nasty Writers Battle". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved August 26, 2018.
  24. ^ "Doom". Writers Guilde of America East. Retrieved May 7, 2020.
  25. ^ "Horsemen". Writers Guilde of America East. Retrieved May 7, 2020.
  26. ^ "Tell-Tale". Writers Guilde of America East. Retrieved May 7, 2020.
  27. ^ "The Expendables". Writers Guilde of America East. Retrieved May 7, 2020.
  28. ^ "Godzilla". Writers Guilde of America East. Retrieved May 7, 2020.
  29. ^ "Zombieland: Double Tap". Writers Guilde of America East. Retrieved May 7, 2020.
  30. ^ "Wonder Woman 1984". Writers Guilde of America East. Retrieved May 7, 2020.
  31. ^ "Mortal Kombat". Writers Guild of America East. Retrieved May 6, 2020.
  32. ^ "Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings". Writers Guild of America East. Retrieved October 14, 2021.
  33. ^ "Jean Claude Van Johnson". Writers Guilde of America East. Retrieved May 7, 2020.

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