Julius Onah

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Julius Onah
Julius Onah.jpg
Onah in 2011
Born (1983-02-10) February 10, 1983 (age 39)
Alma materWesleyan University, New York University
Occupation(s)Film director, producer, screenwriter and occasional actor
Years active2002-present

Julius Onah (born February 10, 1983) is a Nigerian-American filmmaker and occasional actor.[1]

Early life[edit]

Onah was born in Makurdi, Benue State in Nigeria. His father Adoga Onah, was a Nigerian diplomat. He was raised in the Philippines, Nigeria, Togo and the United Kingdom before moving to Arlington County, Virginia. Onah graduated from Washington-Lee High School in Arlington, VA and received his B.A. in theater from Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut. He completed an M.F.A. from the graduate film program at the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University where he was selected as a Dean's Fellow.[1] He is also a recipient of the prestigious Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Scholarship.[2]

His twin brother, Anthony Onah, is also a director, with his first feature film The Price released in 2017.[3]


Onah's work has screened at festivals around the world including Sundance, Berlin, Tribeca, London, Dubai, Los Angeles, Melbourne and Camerimage. In the summer of 2010, he was selected as one of Filmmaker magazine's New Faces of Independent Film. In 2013, he was selected as one of Studio System's 10 Up and Up Feature Directors and Forbes Magazine's 13 African Celebrities To Watch. While at NYU's graduate film program he completed his first feature as his thesis, The Girl Is in Trouble (2015) with executive producer Spike Lee, featuring Alicja Bachleda, Wilmer Valderrama, Columbus Short, and Jesse Spencer. Onah was previously set to direct thriller film adaptation Brilliance for Legendary Pictures which David Koepp scripted with Will Smith and Noomi Rapace to star as leads.[4][5] He then directed The Cloverfield Paradox (2018)[6] with producer J. J. Abrams. His latest film, Luce featuring Naomi Watts, Octavia Spencer, Tim Roth and Kelvin Harrison Jr., premiered at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival.[7] He is set to direct thriller film Bad Genius, a remake of the 2017 Thai film of the same name.[8] He is also set to direct Captain America: New World Order, the fourth Captain America movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, with Anthony Mackie starring in the titular role.[9]


Year Film Director Writer Producer
2015 The Girl Is in Trouble Yes Yes Yes
2018 The Cloverfield Paradox Yes No No
2019 Luce Yes Yes Yes
2024 Captain America: New World Order Yes No No

Open Continents[edit]

Open Continents is a global media project comprising Onah's short, feature, music video and television work.

Continent Title Country Subject Year
EUROPE SZMOLINSKY (Berlin Film Festival, SXSW Click, Melbourne Film Festival) Germany Euro Tales 2008
NIE PATRZ WSTECZ (London Film Festival, Camerimage Grand Jury Award) Poland 2008
DRIK NU AGNES Denmark 2011
AFRICA GOODBYE CHICKEN, FAREWELL GOAT (Los Angeles Film Festival, Mill Valley Film Festival, True/False Film Festival) Nigeria African Days 2010
BIG MAN (Dubai Film Festival, New York Times, Los Angeles Film Festival) 2012
LINUS (MTVu Film of the Week, 1st Place Calvin Klein Short Film Competition) 2007
THE BOUNDARY (Amnesty International Movies That Matter, Best Director NBC Short Cuts, HBO) 2008
"BROKEN ARROWS" (Avicii) 2015
LUCE 2019


  1. ^ a b [1] Archived May 1, 2009, at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ [2] Archived July 26, 2011, at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ "Why 2017 Is The Breakout Year For Nigerian-American Directors, The Onah Brothers". www.konbini.com. Archived from the original on 2017-03-20.
  4. ^ "Legendary Sets Julius Onah To Helm 'Brilliance'". deadline.com. 5 February 2014. Retrieved 13 May 2014.
  5. ^ Anderton, Ethan (12 May 2014). "'Prometheus' Star Noomi Rapace is Joining Will Smith for 'Brilliance'". firstshowing.net. Retrieved 13 May 2014.
  6. ^ "'God Particle' believes in newbie helmer". Variety. 2012-11-30. Retrieved 2014-05-30.
  7. ^ "Sundance 2019: Alfre Woodard, Alec Baldwin + Making Of 'Alien', Satanists & Roy Cohn Docus Among U.S., World Cinema, NEXT, Midnight & Kids Slates".
  8. ^ Wiseman, Andreas (4 February 2022). "Erik Feig & Patrick Wachsberger Gear Up On College Admissions Thriller 'Bad Genius', Julius Onah To Direct — EFM Hot Pic". Deadline Hollywood.
  9. ^ Kit, Borys (July 8, 2022). "Captain America 4 Finds Its Director in Filmmaker Julius Onah (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Archived from the original on July 8, 2022. Retrieved July 8, 2022.

External links[edit]