John Gray (director)

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John Gray
John Gray (director).jpg
Born Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, New York
Alma mater Bishop Ford High
Occupation Director, Writer, Producer
Years active 1989 - Present
Known for Ghost Whisperer, White Irish Drinkers
Spouse(s) Melissa Jo Peltier

John Thomas Gray (born in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, New York) is an American writer, director, producer based in New York. He is most known for being the creator, writing showrunner and director of Ghost Whisperer. He has also written and directed many movies for television, including the remake of the 1976 telefilm Helter Skelter, Martin and Lewis, The Hunley and The Day Lincoln Was Shot. Gray has written and directed feature movies as well.

He was also the producer, writer and director of the 2010 coming of age drama movie, White Irish Drinkers, which is partially based on his childhood in Brooklyn.


The son of an iron worker, Gray began making movies on the streets as a boy in working class Bay Ridge, Brooklyn. Despite lack of money and resources, he was the youngest recipient ever of an AFI grant at the time. In 1989, Gray co-wrote and directed his first television movie, When He's Not a Stranger produced by Ian Sander. Gray later wrote and directed several TV movies and miniseries including The Day Lincoln was Shot, The Hunley and Martin and Lewis. In 2001, he wrote and directed the movie, The Seventh Stream.[1]

In 2004, CBS executives learned about a woman who could talk to spirits of the dead people and the network wanted to make a show about it. They chose Gray to develop a concept, from which he created the show Ghost Whisperer and produced it with Ian Sander and Kim Moses.[2][3] In 2005, he directed the ABC original series Empire in Rome which starred Santiago Cabrera.[4]

Gray started working on White Irish Drinkers, a coming-of-age drama movie in 2009.[5] He had written the script of the movie a decade before, however, he could not find financing for the movie. After working in the television industry for several years, Gray had enough money to independently make the movie with his wife Melissa Jo Peltier and longtime AD, Paul Bernard producing. The movie was shot on location in 17 days on a budget of $650,000 and starred Nick Thurston, Karen Allen, Peter Riegert and Stephen Lang[6][7] The story of the movie is loosely based on his tough, working-class Brooklyn childhood in the '70s and was an award-winner in several festivals.[8]

After Ghost Whisperer's successful five year run, Gray moved into the executive "producing director's" role on network series - first, for CBS's Reckless (also produced by Sander-Moses) and currently, for ABC's The Family, created by Jenna Bans. During breaks between series he has directed episodic television and completed writing and directing the short film produced by Marriott Studios, "French Kiss", set in Paris and starring Tyler Ritter. Gray acquired the rights to Bryan Gruley's mystery thriller The Hanging Tree in 2011, and planned on writing a script to direct a movie based on the novel.[9]


Year Title Notes
1989 When He's Not a Stranger Director
1990 The Lost Capone Director
1992 An American Story Director
1995 Born to be Wild Director
1996 The Glimmer Man Director
1998 The Day Lincoln Was Shot Director
1999 The Hunley Director
2001 The Seventh Stream Director, writer, co-executive producer
2002 Martin and Lewis Director, writer
2004 Helter Skelter Director, writer
2005-2010 Ghost Whisperer Director, writer, producer
2010 White Irish Drinkers Director, producer, writer
2014 Reckless (TV series) Executive co-producer

Awards and honors

  • Christopher Award for A Place for Annie - 1994
  • Humanitas Award for A Place for Annie - 1994
  • Humanitas Award for Haven - 2002


  1. ^ John Gray pours it out with 'White Irish Drinkers', Los Angeles Times, Retrieved on 24 June 2015
  2. ^ Showrunner Series-Ghost Whisperer-Producer John Gray-Ian Sander-Kim Mose, Below The Line News, Retrieved on 24 June 2015
  3. ^ Tales from the trenches: John Gray pitches ‘Ghost Whisperer’, Hollywood Journal, Retrieved on 24 June 2015
  4. ^ CBS ahead of curve on 'Helter’, Los Angeles Times, Retrieved on 24 June 2015
  5. ^ Going Really Indie, With His Own Cash, The New York Times, Retrieved on 24 June 2015
  6. ^ New film 'White Irish Drinkers' inspired by childhood amidst Irish community, Irish Central, Retrieved on 24 June 2015
  7. ^ Channeling Bay Ridge Past, Wall Street Journal, Retrieved on 24 June
  8. ^ Bay Ridge eyes are smiling in Brooklyn crime drama 'White Irish Drinkers', New York Daily News, Retrieved on 24 June 2015
  9. ^ Gray Targets 'The Hanging Tree' As 'White Irish Drinkers' Followup, Deadline 24 June 2015, Retrieved on 24 June 2015

External links