John Hay (director)
John Hay (born 1959) is an English film director who was born in Kolkata in India where his mother, Elizabeth Partridge, worked as a foreign correspondent for the News Chronicle. He returned to England and was raised in Sussex where he started making films at the age of twelve.
After leaving university, he began directing for UK television, making dramas such as Looking Back and two adaptations of Heathcote Williams' epic poems, Falling for a Dolphin and Autogeddon, which starred Academy Award-winner Jeremy Irons. Autogeddon was critically revered and won the Jury Prize at Shanghai which led to Hay working with Al Pacino on Every Time I Cross the Tamar I Get into Trouble, a short about Pacino’s personally-financed feature The Local Stigmatic, which was based on a stage play by Heathcote Williams. He worked again with Pacino in 1996 on Looking for Richard, starring Kevin Spacey and Alec Baldwin.
With his writing partner, Rik Carmichael, he co-wrote and directed a critically acclaimed adaptation of a Jim Corbett story, The Man-Eating Leopard of Rudraprayag which starred Jason Flemyng and Jodhi May. He also directed an adaptation of the children’s classic, Stig of the Dump for the BBC which won a BAFTA and an EMMY.
He is perhaps best known for his film, There's Only One Jimmy Grimble starring Robert Carlyle and Ray Winstone, which won the Crystal Bear for Best Film at the Berlin Film Festival in 2001 and ten other first prizes including the Golden Griffin for best feature at Giffoni Film Festival.
He is currently writing and directing Coram Boy, an adaptation of Whitbread-Award winner Jamila Gavin's novel and a Second World War spy drama, Lives in Secret, based on Sarah Helm's book, A Life in Secrets.
Major works (as director)
- There's Only One Jimmy Grimble (2001)
- Stig of the Dump (2002)
- The Truth About Love (2004)
- The Man-Eating Leopard of Rudraprayag (2005)
- Lost Christmas (2011)