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Stephen Woolley (born 3 September 1956 in London) is an English film producer and director. He is best known for his work with director Neil Jordan, which has resulted in a number of critically acclaimed films, including the Oscar-winning The Crying Game.
After programming The Screen On The Green cinema in Islington, North London, and managing The Scala Cinema near King's Cross railway station, Woolley established Palace Video in the early 1980s to distribute the types of cult cinema and international art films that had been the core of his cinema programmes. An early success was the distribution of the output of David Lynch. The company then moved into cinema distribution, becoming Palace Pictures; and then film production in 1984, with many projects being supported by Channel 4. His successes as a producer include The Company of Wolves, Mona Lisa, and The Crying Game (nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture), and Interview with the Vampire, all directed by Neil Jordan. He also helped establish the directors Michael Caton-Jones and Richard Stanley. Woolley established an association with Miramax, which distributed a number of Palace films in the United States.
Woolley had established his reputation with a series of low budget but high production value releases, but began developing more ambitious projects. In 1992, Palace Pictures became bankrupt; a year later, The Scala Cinema closed down, re-opening as a night-club in 1999. Since then, Woolley has concentrated on producing Jordan's films in association with Hollywood studios. By securing a three picture deal with Warner Brothers after the worldwide box office hit of Interview with the Vampire, Woolley was able to fund the controversial historical drama Michael Collins. His own directorial debut, the 2005 film Stoned, was a biopic of Brian Jones.
Stephen is married to fellow film producer, Elizabeth Karlsen.
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