Jeff Nathanson

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Jeff Nathanson
Jeffrey D. Nathanson

(1965-10-12) October 12, 1965 (age 55)
Alma materUniversity of California, Santa Barbara
AFI Conservatory
OccupationScreenwriter and director
Years active1993–present

Jeffrey D. Nathanson (born October 12, 1965) is an American screenwriter and director.

Early life and education[edit]

Nathanson was born on October 12, 1965, in Los Angeles County, California.[1][2][3][4] He attended the University of California, Santa Barbara as an English major from 1983 to 1985.[5][6] While at UC Santa Barbara, he worked on the school's newspaper, the Daily Nexus, and has stated that the courses he took at UC Santa Barbara led him to wanting to become a screenwriter.[5][7] He later enrolled in the screenwriting program at the AFI Conservatory for one year.[6][8]


He is best known for his work on the Rush Hour sequels Rush Hour 2 and Rush Hour 3, Catch Me If You Can, The Terminal, and The Last Shot. He co-wrote a story draft for the film Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (2008) with George Lucas; the film was directed by Steven Spielberg. He wrote the screenplay for Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales (2017), on which he also received a story by co-credit, the latter with Terry Rossio.[9][10] He wrote the script for the 2019 CGI The Lion King remake for Disney, directed by Jon Favreau.[11]

On October 3, 2017, it was reported that Nathanson would be penning a script for a biographical film directed by Brett Ratner based on the life of the Playboy founder Hugh Hefner, who will be portrayed by Academy Award winner Jared Leto,[12] but the biopic was put indefinitely on hold and was confirmed that Leto would not portray the Playboy founder following an emergence of sexual harassment allegations against Ratner on November 2, 2017.[13]

Honors and awards[edit]

Nathanson was nominated for a Best Original Screenplay British Academy of Film and Television Arts Award for his work on Catch Me If You Can.[14]



Year Title Writer Executive
Director Notes
1995 For Better or Worse Yes Yes Jason Alexander
1997 Speed 2: Cruise Control Yes No Jan de Bont Co-wrote with Randall McCormick and Jan de Bont
2001 Rush Hour 2 Yes No Brett Ratner
2002 Catch Me If You Can Yes No Steven Spielberg
2004 The Terminal Yes No Co-wrote with Sacha Gervasi and Andrew Niccol
The Last Shot Yes No Himself
2007 Rush Hour 3 Yes No Brett Ratner
2008 Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull Yes No Steven Spielberg Co-wrote with David Koepp and George Lucas
New York, I Love You Yes No Brett Ratner Segment #5
2011 Tower Heist Yes No Co-wrote with Ted Griffin, Bill Collage and Adam Cooper
2017 Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales Yes No Joachim Rønning
Espen Sandberg
Co-wrote story with Terry Rossio
2019 The Lion King Yes No Jon Favreau


  1. ^ "Jeffrey D Nathanson, 12 Oct 1965". Retrieved September 1, 2015.
  2. ^ "Gertrude Penner". Retrieved September 1, 2015.
  3. ^ " biography". Retrieved September 1, 2015.
  4. ^ "Cineplex biography". Retrieved September 1, 2015.[permanent dead link]
  5. ^ a b Quiambao, Carissa (October 31, 2011). "Former Gaucho Unveils New Film". Daily Nexus. Santa Barbara, California. Retrieved September 1, 2015.
  6. ^ a b Neumer, Chris. "Jeff Nathanson Interview". Retrieved September 1, 2015.
  7. ^ Quiambao, Carissa (October 27, 2011). "Renowned Director To Visit Campus". Daily Nexus. Santa Barbara, California. Retrieved September 1, 2015.
  8. ^ "AFI ALUMNI". Retrieved September 1, 2015.
  9. ^ Trumbore, Dave (January 11, 2013). "Disney Enlists Screenwriter Jeff Nathanson for PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN 5". Collider. Retrieved September 1, 2015.
  10. ^ Kroll, Justin (January 11, 2013). "Disney hires writer for 'Pirates of the Caribbean 5'". Variety. Los Angeles. Retrieved September 1, 2015.
  11. ^ McCabe, Adam (October 13, 2016). "Disney's Live-Action 'Lion King' hires Jeff Nathanson to pen script". Inside the Magic.
  12. ^ "Jared Leto to star in Hugh Hefner biopic". BBC News. October 3, 2017.
  13. ^ "Brett Ratner's Hugh Hefner Biopic is Dead in the Water". Screen rant. November 2, 2017.
  14. ^ "TAKING A LOOK AT CONFIRMED PANELIST JEFF NATHANSON". Retrieved September 1, 2015.[dead link]

External links[edit]