Josh Singer

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Josh Singer
Josh Singer in 2018.jpg
Singer in 2018
Born1972 (age 48–49)
Alma materYale University
Harvard Law School
Harvard Business School
OccupationWriter, producer
Laura Dave
(m. 2012)

Josh Singer (born 1972) is an American screenwriter and producer. He is best known for writing The Fifth Estate (2013), Spotlight (2015), The Post (2017) and First Man (2018). He won the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay for Spotlight and was nominated for the Golden Globe for Best Screenplay for Spotlight and The Post.

Early life and education[edit]

Singer was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and was raised Jewish. His father was born Jewish, and his mother converted to Judaism (she herself was born to a Jewish father and a Catholic mother).[1] Singer attended Upper Dublin High School in Fort Washington, Pennsylvania, where he appeared in musicals and was a member of math club, drama club, video club, and chorus.[2] In high school, he was elected class treasurer, wrote for the school newspaper, and played for the school's baseball team. Singer won many awards, including the Upper Dublin Medal, science competition and literary prizes, and was co-winner of the school district's highest award.[2] In his senior year, he was named class valedictorian, a Presidential Scholar and a National Merit Scholar.[2]

Singer graduated magna cum laude from Yale University, with distinction in mathematics and economics.[3] At Yale, he was a member and business manager of both The Whiffenpoofs and The Yale Alley Cats. Three to four months prior to going to graduate school, he worked for Children's Television Workshop (the name, at that time, of the production company for the TV show "Sesame Street",[4]) and then began doing internships. He did an internship for Nickelodeon in New York and an internship for Disney Channel out in L.A., working for Roy Price at Disney TV Animation for four or five weeks. As a result, he developed an interest in script writing.[5] He worked as a business analyst for McKinsey & Company[6] before obtaining a J.D. from Harvard Law School and an MBA from Harvard Business School.[7]


After Singer graduated from Harvard, he was hired by showrunner John Wells to write for The West Wing.[6]

In 2006 he was nominated for a WGA award.[8]

In 2012, Singer wrote the screenplay for The Fifth Estate.[9] In 2015, he co-wrote the screenplay for Spotlight, for which he received an Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay.[10]

Personal life[edit]

In 2012, Singer married the American novelist Laura Dave. They reside in Los Angeles, California.



Year Title Credit Notes
2013 The Fifth Estate Screenplay by Based on Inside WikiLeaks by Daniel Domscheit-Berg and WikiLeaks: Inside Julian Assange's War on Secrecy by David Leigh and Luke Harding
2015 Spotlight Written by With Tom McCarthy
Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay
BAFTA Award for Best Original Screenplay
WGA Award for Best Original Screenplay
Nominated—Golden Globe for Best Screenplay
2017 The Post Written by With Liz Hannah
Nominated—Golden Globe for Best Screenplay
2018 First Man Screenplay by Based on First Man: The Life of Neil A. Armstrong by James R. Hansen
Nominated—BAFTA Award for Best Adapted Screenplay
TBA Untitled Leonard Bernstein film Written by With Bradley Cooper


  • The West Wing (editor, writer, 2004–2006)
  • Law & Order: Special Victims Unit (producer, 2007–2008)
  • Lie to Me (supervising producer, 2009)
  • Fringe (supervising producer, 2009–2010)
  • Fringe (co-executive producer, 2010–2011)

Awards and nominations[edit]

Singer won the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay for Spotlight in 2015 and was nominated for the Golden Globe Award for Best Screenplay for the film. He also received a Golden Globe nomination for The Post in 2018.


  1. ^ Tangcay, Jazz (June 19, 2016). "Interview: Spotlight writer Josh Singer". Awards Daily.
  2. ^ a b c Holmes, Kristen (May 27, 1990). "Another Feather In Cap Of Former 'Nerd'". Philadelphia Inquirer.
  3. ^ "The Art of Adaptation The Fifth Estate". The writing studio. Archived from the original on 2014-08-01. Retrieved October 23, 2014.
  4. ^ (That production company is now called "Sesame Workshop")
  5. ^ Erbland, Kate (November 4, 2015). "How 'Spotlight' Screenwriter Josh Singer Recovered From 'The Fifth Estate' With Another Journalism Film". Indie wire. Retrieved November 7, 2015.
  6. ^ a b Thompson, Anne (October 16, 2013). "Josh Singer Talks Challenges of Tackling WikiLeaks Drama 'The Fifth Estate' --and What He Left Out". Indie Wire. Archived from the original on October 25, 2014. Retrieved October 25, 2014.
  7. ^ "Native son forges 'West Wing'-Constitution Center ties". Philadelphia Inquirer. April 26, 2005. p. D05.
  8. ^ Soares, Andre (January 20, 2006). "Writers Guild Awards 2006". Alt Film Guide. Retrieved October 4, 2010.
  9. ^ Tullis, Paul (October 21, 2013). ""Fifth Estate" Screenwriter Reveals All". Archived from the original on 2014-10-25. Retrieved October 25, 2014.
  10. ^ Erbland, Kate (November 4, 2015). ""How 'Spotlight' Screenwriter Josh Singer Recovered From 'The Fifth Estate' With Another Journalism Film"". Retrieved November 7, 2015.

External links[edit]