Mike Binder

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Mike Binder
Born (1958-06-02) June 2, 1958 (age 63)
OccupationDirector, screenwriter, comedian, producer, actor
RelativesJack Binder (brother)

Mike Binder (born June 2, 1958) is an American film director, screenwriter, stand-up comic, producer, and actor.[1]

Life and career[edit]

Binder, descended from Russian-Jewish immigrants,[2] grew up in the Detroit suburb of Birmingham. During the summers of 1966 through 1975, he attended Camp Tamakwa, a summer camp in Algonquin Provincial Park in Ontario, Canada; that experience was the inspiration (and the filming location) for his 1993 film Indian Summer.[3][4][5]

Beginning his career as a screenwriter and standup comedian,[6] in March 1990 with the March 9 theatrical premiere of his first screenplay, Coupe de Ville, directed by Joe Roth and co-produced by Binder, and his own HBO stand up comedy special, broadcast the following night.

Binder's directorial debut was with his second screenplay, 1992's Crossing the Bridge.

Binder gained further prominence with his 20-episode 2001-02 HBO comedy series, The Mind of the Married Man, which he co-wrote, co-directed and starred in as the central character "Micky Barnes".[7][8] That same year, his independently produced film The Sex Monster won "Best Film" and Binder won "Best Actor" at the 2001 Comedy Arts Festival in Aspen.

Binder wrote and directed three mid-2000s films in which he also played supporting roles. The first, The Upside of Anger, starring Joan Allen and Kevin Costner, premiered at the January 2005 Sundance Film Festival; thirteen months later, Man About Town with Ben Affleck, was first seen at the February 2006 Santa Barbara International Film Festival and, after another 13 months, Reign Over Me was released; Binder directed, wrote, and appeared in the film, starring Adam Sandler and Don Cheadle. His most recent film is 2014's Black or White, starring Kevin Costner and Octavia Spencer.

As an actor, Binder has appeared in Steven Spielberg's Minority Report with Tom Cruise, Rod Lurie's The Contender with Joan Allen, and Rebecca Miller's The Private Lives of Pippa Lee with Robin Wright Penn.[9]

Binder has directed most of the screenplays he has written, and has acted in many of them as well. As a writer, he has written screenplays for Steven Spielberg, Julia Roberts, Robert Zemeckis, Jim Carrey, Adam Sandler, Tim Allen and Reese Witherspoon.[citation needed]

Binder's first novel, Keep Calm, a thriller set in the UK, was published in 2016.[10] He directed stand-up comedian Bill Burr's most recent Netflix comedy special Paper Tiger. On October 4, 2020 his five-part documentary series on The Comedy Store, based on the years he spent there and interviews with most of the major alumni of the famous nightclub, aired on Showtime.


Year Title Credited as Role Notes
Director Writer Producer Actor
1990 Coupe de Ville No Yes Yes No
1992 Crossing the Bridge Yes Yes No No
1993 Indian Summer Yes Yes No No
1994 Blankman Yes No No Yes Dr. Victor Norris
1999 The Sex Monster Yes Yes No Yes Marty Barnes Comedy Arts Festival for Best Actor
Comedy Arts Festival for Best Film
2000 The Contender No No No Yes Lewis Hollis
2001– 2002 The Mind of the Married Man Yes Yes No Yes Micky Barnes TV show, Creator
2001 Fourplay Yes Yes No Yes Ben Greene
The Search for John Gissing Yes No No Yes Matthew Barnes
2002 Minority Report No No No Yes Leo Crow
2005 The Upside of Anger Yes Yes No Yes Adam "Shep" Goodman
2006 Man About Town Yes Yes No Yes Morty
2007 Reign Over Me Yes Yes No Yes Bryan Sugarman
2009 The Private Lives of Pippa Lee No No No Yes Sam Shapiro
Two Dollar Beer No Yes executive No TV Movie
2011 Fanboy No No No Yes Acting coach
One Day No No No Yes Dexter's agent Uncredited
2014 Black or White Yes Yes Yes No
2016 Billions Yes No No No
2017–2018 Nashville Yes No No No
Ray Donavan Yes Yes Yes No
2019 Paper Tiger Yes No No No Stand-up comedy special
2020 The Comedy Store Yes Yes Yes Yes Himself TV Series; Documentary


  1. ^ "Mike Binder". Movies & TV Dept. The New York Times. Baseline & All Movie Guide. 2007. Archived from the original on 2007-11-06.
  2. ^ WTF Podcast with Marc Maron (February 2, 2016), Mike Binder - WTF Podcast with Marc Maron #677, retrieved 2017-01-09
  3. ^ Canby, Vincent (April 23, 1993). "Movie Review: Indian Summer (1993)". The New York Times. Retrieved September 6, 2015.
  4. ^ Hinson, Hal (April 24, 1993). "'Indian Summer'". The Washington Post. Retrieved September 6, 2015.
  5. ^ "Indian Summer: The Movie". Camp Tamakwa. Retrieved September 6, 2015.
  6. ^ Buck, Jerry (June 10, 1985). "Comedy from Detroit". The Lewiston Journal.
  7. ^ Tomashoff, Craig (September 22, 2002). "TELEVISION/RADIO; A Few Brave Husbands Have Sex on Their Minds". The New York Times.
  8. ^ Salamon, Julie (September 11, 2001). "TELEVISION REVIEW; Three Guys With One Thought". The New York Times.
  9. ^ "Mike Binder". Yahoo!.
  10. ^ "Keep Calm". Kirkus Reviews. 2016.

External links[edit]