Josh Olson

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Josh Olson
Josh Olson.jpg
Josh Olson at the 2008 Screenwriting Expo
OccupationScreenwriter, film director

Josh Olson is an American screenwriter and director.


Olson began his career working as a production assistant in the art department on the 1987 film Masters of the Universe.[citation needed] In 2006, he was nominated for the British Academy Award, the Writer's Guild Award, the USC Scripter Award and the Academy Award for his adapted screenplay for A History of Violence.

In 2006, Olson was invited by author Harlan Ellison to collaborate with Ellison on an adaptation of the author's short story "The Discarded" for ABC's series, "Masters of Science Fiction." The episode stars Brian Dennehy and John Hurt, and was directed by Jonathan Frakes, and was the highest rated episode of the series. Olson is also one of the writers of a segment of the six-story "Batmanime," Gotham Knight, along with David Goyer, Brian Azzarello and others, contributing the script for "Have I Got A Story For You." He and D. B. Weiss worked on Peter Jackson's film based on the Halo video game series, but the project was later cancelled.[1]

In 2007, Olson wrote an article called "The Life And Death Of Jesse James: An internet love mystery" about the alleged dating fraud activities of a woman named Janna St. James Priggie.[2] The story is real and a civil action (still pending as of October 2011) was filed by the victim.[3]

He was the first writer on Jack Reacher, for Paramount Pictures, part of the Jack Reacher series by Lee Child.[4] The film starred Tom Cruise, Robert Duvall, and Werner Herzog. Ultimately, the film was written and directed by Christopher McQuarrie.

In 2009, he wrote an article called "I Will Not Read Your Fucking Script" on the blog of The Village Voice.[5]

Olson recently[timeframe?] wrote the script "Tabloid" for Mick Jagger. His adaptation of Dennis Lehane's short story Until Gwen was on the Black List (survey). He has also written all ten episodes of the hit audio drama, Bronzeville, which is produced by and stars Laurence Fishburne and Larenz Tate. In 2016, Thunder Road purchased "Trigger Warning," a spec script Olson wrote with John Brancato.

Olson also hosts the podcast, The Movies That Made Me, a spinoff of the website Trailers From Hell.


Year Title Notes
1998 On the Border TV Movie
1999 Hitman's Run Uncredited
2000 A Moment of Silence Short
2001 Instinct to Kill
2001 Puppy Love Short film, Also Director
2002 Infested Also Director
2005 A History of Violence
2007 The Discarded An Episode of Masters of Science Fiction
2008 Batman: Gotham Knight Anthology film segment: Have I Got a Story for You


  1. ^ Fritz, Ben (October 31, 2006). "No home for 'Halo' pic". Variety. Retrieved October 20, 2007.
  2. ^ Josh Olson, The Life & Death of Jesse James. In LA Weekly, 2001-10-11, page found 2011-10-31.
  3. ^ Piece of Fakey Blog by victim of "Jesse Jubilee James" scam, frequently updated with news about the court case.
  4. ^ Siegel, Tatiana (2008-09-25). "Josh Olson scripting 'One Shot'". Variety.
  5. ^ "I Will Not Read Your Fucking Script".

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