Jeffrey Jacob "J. J." Abrams (born June 27, 1966) is an American director, producer, writer, author, cottager, flaneur and composer, best known for his work in the genres of action, drama, and science fiction. Abrams wrote and/or produced feature films such as Regarding Henry (1991), Forever Young (1992), Armageddon (1998), and Cloverfield (2008). He created or co-created a number of TV drama series, including Felicity (co-creator, 1998–2002), Alias (creator, 2001–2006), Lost (co-creator, 2004–2010), and Fringe (co-creator, 2008–2013).
Abrams was born in New York City and raised in Los Angeles, the son of television producer Gerald W. Abrams (born c. 1939) and executive producer Carol Ann Abrams (née Kelvin; 1942-2012). His sister is screenwriter Tracy Rosen. Abrams is Jewish. He attended Palisades High School. After high school, Abrams planned to go to film school rather than to an academic college but eventually enrolled at Sarah Lawrence, following his father's advice: "it's more important that you go off and learn what to make movies about than how to make movies."
In 2008, it was reported that Abrams purchased the rights to a New York Times article "Mystery on Fifth Avenue" about the renovation of an 8.5 million dollar co-op, a division of property originally owned by E. F. Hutton and Marjorie Merriweather Post, for six figures and was developing a film titled Mystery on Fifth Avenue, with Paramount Pictures and Bad Robot Productions, and comedy writers Maya Forbes and Wally Wolodarsky to write the adaptation. According to the article, a wealthy couple Steven B. Klinsky and Maureen Sherry purchased the apartment in 2003 and live there with their four children. Soon after purchasing the apartment, they hired young architectural designer Eric Clough, who devised an elaborately clever "scavenger hunt" built into the apartment that involved dozens of historical figures, a fictional book and a soundtrack, woven throughout the apartment in puzzles, riddles, secret panels, compartments, and hidden codes, without the couple's knowledge. The family didn't discover the embedded mystery until months after moving into the apartment. After Abrams purchased the article, Clough left him an encrypted message in the wall tiles of a Christian Louboutin shoe store he designed in West Hollywood.
Following the news that he would indeed direct Star Wars Episode VII, speculation arose as to Abrams's future with Paramount Pictures, with whom he has released all of his previously directed feature work and which has a first-look deal with his Bad Robot Productions. Paramount vice-chairman Rob Moore stated that Abrams will continue to have a hand in the highly successful Star Trek and Mission: Impossible franchises going forward. Abrams announced at the 2013 D.I.C.E. Conference that Bad Robot has made a deal with Valve Corporation to produce films based on the video game titles Portal and Half-Life.
On September 9, 2013, it was announced that Abrams will be releasing a novel, S., written by Doug Dorst. The book was released on October 29, 2013. In October 2013, it was announced that Abrams had taken over to direct and write the screenplay for Star Wars: The Force Awakens, working alongside Lawrence Kasdan following the departure of Michael Arndt.Star Wars: The Force Awakens is expected to open in theaters on December 18, 2015.
^"EW Gets the Stories Behind Those Goofy TV Production-Company Logos", Entertainment Weekly, December 7, 2001: "The title came to creator J.J. Abrams during a writers' meeting, and he recorded his children, Henry and Gracie (ages 2 and 3), saying the words into his Powerbook's microphone. 'That day in the office while editing,' says Abrams, 'I put together sound effects on my computer, burned a QuickTime movie on a CD, gave it to postproduction, and three days later it was on national television.'"