Scott Rudin

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Scott Rudin
Born (1958-07-14) July 14, 1958 (age 62)
Years active1978–present
AwardsFull list

Scott Rudin (born July 14, 1958)[1] is an American film, television, and theater producer.

His films include the Academy Award-winning Best Picture No Country for Old Men, as well as Lady Bird, Fences, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, The Social Network, School of Rock, Zoolander, The Truman Show, The First Wives Club, Clueless, The Addams Family, and eight Wes Anderson films. On Broadway, he has won seventeen Tony Awards for shows such as The Book of Mormon, Hello, Dolly!, The Humans, A View from the Bridge, Fences, and Passion.[2]

In 2021, The Hollywood Reporter published an article accusing Rudin of abusing his employees, including physically assaulting them, and having victims sign non-disparagement agreements and having the victims' film credits increased or retroactively decreased after quitting.[3]

Early life[edit]

Rudin was born and raised in Baldwin, New York, on Long Island[1] in a Jewish family.[4][5]


At the age of 16, he started working as an assistant to theatre producer Kermit Bloomgarden. Later, he worked for producers Robert Whitehead and Emanuel Azenberg. In lieu of attending college, Rudin took a job as a casting director and ended up starting his own company. His newly minted firm cast numerous Broadway shows, including Annie (1977) for Mike Nichols. He also cast PBS's Verna: USO Girl (1978), starring Sissy Spacek and William Hurt; and the mini-series The Scarlet Letter (1979) starring Meg Foster, Kevin Conway and John Heard; also, the films King of the Gypsies (1978), The Wanderers (1979), Simon (1980) with Alan Arkin and Resurrection (1980).[6]

Film producer[edit]

In 1980, Rudin moved to Los Angeles, taking up employment at Edgar J. Scherick Associates, where he served as producer on a variety of films including I'm Dancing as Fast as I Can (1981), the NBC miniseries Little Gloria... Happy at Last (1982) and the Oscar-winning documentary He Makes Me Feel Like Dancin' (1983).[6]

Rudin then formed his own company, Scott Rudin Productions. His first film under that banner was Gillian Armstrong's Mrs. Soffel (1984). Not long after, Rudin placed his production shingle in dormancy and joined 20th Century-Fox as an executive producer. At Fox, he met Jonathan Dolgen, a higher-level executive, with whom he would be working once again at Paramount Pictures years later. Rudin rose through the ranks at Fox and became president of production in 1986 at 28 years old.[6]

His stint at the top of Fox was short lived, and he soon left and entered into a producing deal with Paramount. On August 1, 1992, Rudin signed a deal with TriStar Pictures but soon moved back to Paramount. Rudin's first-look deal with Paramount Pictures lasted nearly 15 years, producing pictures including The First Wives Club, The Addams Family, Clueless, Sabrina, and Sleepy Hollow.

After the resignation of Paramount's chairwoman Sherry Lansing in 2004 and nearly simultaneous departure of Jonathan Dolgen (then president of the company), Rudin left the studio and set a five-year first-look pact with Disney that allowed him to make movies under their labels Touchstone Pictures, Walt Disney Pictures, Hollywood Pictures, and Miramax Films, whose founders Harvey and Bob Weinstein had departed.[7] Previously, Harvey Weinstein and Rudin had public confrontations during the production of The Hours (2002), which Rudin produced for Miramax Films after it became a studio subsidiary under Disney. Rudin later said he and Weinstein "are both control freaks. We both want to run our own shows. When I'm doing a Miramax movie, I work for him. And I don't like that feeling. I chafe under that. I especially chafe under it when I feel that I'm on a leash."[8] His projects in the 2010s have included lower-budget, independent films. In 2017 and 2018, Rudin and studio A24 released three films about adolescence by first-time writer/directors: Greta Gerwig's Lady Bird, Bo Burnham's Eighth Grade, and Jonah Hill's Mid90s. In 2015, he signed a television production deal with Fox.[9]

Theater producer[edit]

Typically producing between two and five productions per year,[10] Rudin is one of Broadway's most prolific commercial producers.[11]

His first Broadway play, David Henry Hwang's Face Value in 1993, was produced alongside Stuart Ostrow and Jujamcyn Theaters, and it closed after eight preview performances.[12] He started a deal with Jujamcyn to develop and produce new plays for the theater chain.[13] In 1994, Rudin won the Best Musical Tony Award for his production of Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine's Passion. The following year, he co-produced Kathleen Turner's Broadway comeback, Indiscretions, and Ralph Fiennes' New York stage debut in Hamlet. In 1996, Rudin produced the revival of the Stephen Sondheim and Larry Gelbart musical A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, for which Nathan Lane won his first Tony Award. His subsequent productions and co-productions have included Skylight, The Goat or Who Is Sylvia?, Seven Guitars, The Ride Down Mt. Morgan, Copenhagen, Deuce, The History Boys, Beckett/Albee, Closer, The Blue Room, Doubt, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, The Year of Magical Thinking, A Behanding in Spokane, God of Carnage, The House of Blue Leaves, and Exit the King.[14]

In 2010, Rudin and Carole Shorenstein Hays produced the first Broadway revival of August Wilson's Pulitzer Prize-winning play Fences, directed by Kenny Leon and starring Denzel Washington and Viola Davis. Fences garnered ten Tony Award nominations and three wins, including Best Revival of a Play, Best Actor for Washington, and Best Actress for Davis. He would later produce the 2016 film adaptation of Fences.

The following year, Rudin was a producer for the Broadway musical The Book of Mormon, which opened in March 2011 at the Eugene O'Neill Theatre.[15] The show won nine Tony Awards including Best Musical[15] and the Grammy Award for Best Musical Theatre Album.[16] The production has played more than 3,740 Broadway performances as of March 15, 2020.[15] The show has also played in London, Australia, Europe, Asia, and on tour across the United States.[17]

Since 2011, Rudin has won Tony Awards for producing Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman (directed by Mike Nichols and starring Philip Seymour Hoffman and Andrew Garfield), Lorraine Hansberry's A Raisin in the Sun (starring Denzel Washington), David Hare's Skylight (directed by Stephen Daldry and starring Carey Mulligan and Bill Nighy), Stephen Karam's The Humans, Ivo van Hove's staging of Arthur Miller's A View From The Bridge, and the record-breaking revival of Hello, Dolly! starring Bette Midler. Other notable productions include Larry David's Fish in the Dark, a hit comedy that took in "more than $13.5 million in advance sales at the box office [which] beats the previous record for a play, $13.05 million for the 2013 revival of Harold Pinter's Betrayal," which Rudin produced starring Daniel Craig and Rachel Weisz.[18]

To Kill a Mockingbird legal disputes[edit]

Rudin produced the first Broadway production of Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird, newly adapted for the stage by Aaron Sorkin, directed by Bartlett Sher, and starring Jeff Daniels.[19] The production opened to critical acclaim at the Shubert Theatre on December 13, 2018.[20] During the week ending on December 23, 2018, the production grossed over $1.5 million, breaking the record for box office grosses for a non-musical play in a theater owned by The Shubert Organization.[21]

In March 2018, prior to the play's opening, the Harper Lee estate filed a lawsuit against the play's production company based on allegations that the play deviates too much from the novel.[22] Sorkin had previously admitted that, "As far as Atticus and his virtue goes, this is a different take on Mockingbird than Harper Lee's or Horton Foote's. He becomes Atticus Finch by the end of the play, and while he’s going along, he has a kind of running argument with Calpurnia, the housekeeper, which is a much bigger role in the play I just wrote. He is in denial about his neighbors and his friends and the world around him, that it is as racist as it is, that a Maycomb County jury could possibly put Tom Robinson in jail when it’s so obvious what happened here. He becomes an apologist for these people."[23] The following month, producer Rudin countersued for breach of contract. The legal dispute was settled by May 2018.[24]

Prior to the run of Sorkin's adaptation, another version of the play by Christopher Sergel had been available for license for over 50 years. Since the opening of Sorkin's adaptation, lawyers acting for Atticus Limited Liability Company (the company formed by Rudin for the Broadway production of To Kill a Mockingbird) claimed worldwide exclusivity for professional stage rights to any adaptation of Lee's book.[25] The company has moved aggressively to shut down all other productions of To Kill a Mockingbird staged within 25 miles of any city ALLC determines to be a major metropolitan center that might eventually host the Sorkin adaptation – even though the companies had been legally granted rights by Dramatic Publishing Co. to produce the Sergel adaptation.[26] One of the amateur companies, The Grand Theatre, estimated that the cancellation of Mockingbird would cost the theatre some $20,000.[26] In the week that the New York Times story ran, it was revealed that Rudin had recently purchased a $15 million New York City home from former Vanity Fair editor Graydon Carter.[27]

Media scrutiny[edit]

Rudin has drawn attention for his choice to withdraw from at least two major Broadway productions. He left the Pulitzer Prize-winning play Clybourne Park in February 2012 ahead of an April opening, due to a feud with writer Bruce Norris that was unrelated to the play.[28] At the time, the New York Post's Michael Riedel said, "And like Merrick, he does not suffer fools, especially ones who go back on their word."[28] Jujamcyn Theaters president Jordan Roth ultimately produced Clybourne Park, and it won the 2012 Tony Award for Best Play. In 2015, it was announced that Rudin would produce Groundhog Day, a musical adaptation of the film Groundhog Day, originally starring Bill Murray. Tim Minchin, who penned the award-winning adaptation of Roald Dahl’s Matilda The Musical, wrote the music and lyrics, and screenwriter Danny Rubin wrote the book. Rudin withdrew from the production in June 2016, citing creative differences with the production team.[11] Groundhog Day opened on Broadway in 2017 and was a financial failure, closing after just five months.[29]

In 2013, after New York Times theatre reporter Patrick Healy published an interview with Colm Toibin, the author of Rudin's financially unsuccessful The Testament of Mary, Rudin ran an advertisement in the Times, saying: "Let's give a big cuddly shout-out to Pat Healy, infant provocateur and amateur journalist at The New York Times. Keep it up, Pat -- one day perhaps you'll learn something about how Broadway works, and maybe even understand it."[30][31]

In 2016, in a throwback to an earlier practice on Broadway, Rudin demanded that all critics attend the opening night performance of his production of The Front Page, which starred Nathan Lane, John Slattery, John Goodman, Holland Taylor, and Robert Morse. (Typically, critics are invited to several performances prior to Opening Night, giving them ample time to file reviews.) In a public dispute, Hollywood Reporter critic David Rooney, who had a conflict on the date of the opening, balked at the change, adding, "You know nobody works at that pace anymore, right?" Rudin shot back, "Critics reviewed shows on Broadway this way for 100 years. You can do it for one night. Get over it." Rooney's rave review eventually ran two days later than other New York critics, on October 23.[32]

Sony Pictures Entertainment hack[edit]

On December 9, 2014, a major illegal breach of Sony's computer systems by "Guardians of Peace" hackers using Shamoon malware led to disclosure of many gigabytes of stolen information, including internal company documents. In subsequent news coverage SPE Co-Chair Amy Pascal and Scott Rudin were noted to have had an email exchange about Pascal's upcoming encounter with President Barack Obama that included characterizations described as racist.[33][34][35] Both he and Pascal later apologized.[35]

The two had suggested they should mention films about African-Americans upon meeting the president, such as Django Unchained, 12 Years a Slave, The Butler, and Amistad which all discuss slavery in the United States or the pre-civil rights era.[33][34][35] In the e-mail thread, Rudin added, "I bet he likes Kevin Hart."[34][35] Rudin later said that the e-mails were "private emails between friends and colleagues written in haste and without much thought or sensitivity."[33][35] He added that he was "profoundly and deeply sorry."[33][35]

Criticism and allegations of abusive behavior[edit]

Rudin is widely considered to be one of the toughest and most abusive bosses in the entertainment industry.[36]

He has been called "Hollywood's biggest a-hole" (the New York Post's "Page Six"),[37] "the most feared man in town" (The Hollywood Reporter),[38] and notoriously hot-tempered.[39] Rudin acknowledged having a temper, but said he has grown up.[40]

In April 2021, Rudin was accused, by numerous employees speaking to The Hollywood Reporter, of a long-standing pattern of abusive behavior towards his employees, including physical abuse.[3]


Among his numerous accolades as a film and theatrical producer, Rudin has won seventeen Tony Awards, an Academy Award, an Emmy, a Grammy, four Golden Globes and sixteen Drama Desk Awards. Additionally, he has been nominated for ten BAFTA Awards. With his Grammy win for The Book of Mormon in 2012, he became one of the few people who have won an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony Award, and the first producer to do so.

In 2008, two of Rudin's productions—the Coen brothers' No Country for Old Men, which they adapted from the Cormac McCarthy book of the same name, and Paul Thomas Anderson's There Will Be Blood, which was adapted from the Upton Sinclair novel, Oil!—were nominated for eight Oscars apiece at the 2008 Academy Awards, including a Best Picture nod for each. The two films shared the distinction of being the most nominated movies at that year's Oscar ceremony. Ultimately, No Country for Old Men won the Best Picture prize, with Rudin accepting the award on stage.[41]

Rudin earned Primetime Emmy award nominations for Little Gloria... Happy at Last and School of Rock, and won both Primetime and Daytime Emmys for He Makes Me Feel Like Dancin'. He won a Grammy award for The Book of Mormon.[16]

At the 2011 Producers Guild of America (PGA) Awards, Rudin became the only person ever to be nominated twice in one year.[42] He was nominated (along with Dana Brunetti, Ceán Chaffin and Michael De Luca) for producing the Facebook biographical film The Social Network and was also nominated (along with Joel and Ethan Coen) for their remake of the classic western True Grit (2010). That same year, the PGA also awarded Rudin the David O. Selznick Achievement Award in Motion Pictures which recognizes an individual's outstanding body of work in the field of motion picture production.[43]


He was a producer in all films unless otherwise noted.



Executive producer

As casting director
Year Film
1978 King of the Gypsies
1979 Last Embrace
The Wanderers
1980 Simon
Hide in Plain Sight
As an actor
Year Film Role Notes
2014 While We're Young Party Guest
Casting department
Year Film Role
1980 Resurrection Casting: New York
Year Film Role
2009 Away We Go Special thanks
2010 Beginners
2013 Night Moves
2015 Louder Than Bombs Thanks
2016 Certain Women Special thanks
2019 Share


Executive producer


Miscellaneous crew
Year Title Role Notes
1996 Passion Stage producer TV movie
2016 The Night Of Consultant
As casting director
Year Title Notes
1979 Sanctuary of Fear TV movie
1980 The Lathe of Heaven


  1. ^ a b "Scott Rudin: Film, theater producer". The Wall Street Journal. Archived from the original on February 2, 2017. Retrieved December 11, 2014.
  2. ^ League, The Broadway. "Scott Rudin – Broadway Cast & Staff | IBDB". Retrieved November 7, 2018.
  3. ^ a b Siegel, Tatiana (April 7, 2021). ""Everyone Just Knows He's an Absolute Monster": Scott Rudin's Ex-Staffers Speak Out on Abusive Behavior". The Hollywood Reporter (website ed.). A version of the article also appeared in the April 7, 2021 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine.
  4. ^ Weiss, Philip (December 26, 1993). "Hollywood at a Fever Pitch". The New York Times.
  5. ^ Jr, Mike Fleming (January 4, 2011). "Oscar: Scott Rudin Q&A On 'The Social Network' And 'True Grit'". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved June 5, 2018. Scott Rudin: "...frankly, I was the only Jew on the creative team"
  6. ^ a b c "Scott Rudin Biography". Yahoo! Movies. Archived from the original on February 13, 2008. Retrieved February 25, 2008.
  7. ^ Holson, Laura M. (April 21, 2005). "Rudin leaving Paramount to join Disney". International Herald Tribune. Archived from the original on June 24, 2008.
  8. ^ Horn, John (March 5, 2003). "Scott Rudin: unafraid of Virginia Woolf". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on March 10, 2020.
  9. ^ Wagmeister, Elizabeth (June 8, 2015). "Scott Rudin Inks Mega Multi-Year First Look Deal with Fox Networks Group". Variety. Retrieved October 21, 2020.
  10. ^ League, The Broadway. "Scott Rudin – Broadway Cast & Staff | IBDB". Retrieved November 6, 2018.
  11. ^ a b Paulson, Michael (June 6, 2016). "No More 'Groundhog Day' for One Powerful Producer". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved March 13, 2019.
  12. ^ League, The Broadway. "Face Value – Broadway Play – Original | IBDB". Retrieved November 7, 2018.
  13. ^ Gerard, Jeremy (April 20, 1993). "Rudin, Jujamcyn tie B'way knot". Variety. Retrieved April 8, 2021.
  14. ^ "Scott Rudin Theatre Credits, News, Bio and Photos". Retrieved April 8, 2021.
  15. ^ a b c "The Book of Mormon". Internet Broadway Database. Retrieved March 10, 2020.
  16. ^ a b "Grammy Awards 2012: Winners and nominees list". Los Angeles Times. March 23, 2014. Retrieved April 8, 2021.
  17. ^ "The Book of Mormon Musical". The Book of Mormon Musical. Retrieved February 28, 2019.
  18. ^ Viagas, Robert; Marzullo, Robert (June 23, 2015). "Starring Jason Alexander, Fish In the Dark Extends to Aug. 1". Playbill. Retrieved June 6, 2016.
  19. ^ "To Kill a Mockingbird – Broadway Play – Original | IBDB". Retrieved February 28, 2019.
  20. ^ Green, Jesse (December 13, 2018). "Review: A Broadway 'Mockingbird,' Elegiac and Effective". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved February 28, 2019.
  21. ^ Hetrick, Adam (December 26, 2018). "Grosses Analysis: To Kill a Mockingbird Breaks 118-Year Broadway Box Office Record". Playbill. Retrieved February 28, 2019.
  22. ^ Alter, Alexandra; Paulson, Michael (March 14, 2018). "Harper Lee's Estate Sues Over Broadway Version of 'Mockingbird'". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved February 28, 2019.
  23. ^ "How Aaron Sorkin's To Kill a Mockingbird Will Surprise You". Retrieved March 13, 2019.
  24. ^ Disis, Jill (May 10, 2018). "Aaron Sorkin's 'To Kill A Mockingbird' adaptation cleared for Broadway after legal battle ends". CNNMoney. Retrieved February 28, 2019.
  25. ^ Evans, Greg (January 22, 2019). "British Alternate 'Mockingbird' Killed Over Stage Rights: Smash Broadway Version Plans UK Mounting". Deadline. Retrieved February 28, 2019.
  26. ^ a b Paulson, Michael; Alter, Alexandra (February 28, 2019). "Legal Threats From Broadway's 'Mockingbird' Sink Productions Around the Country". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved February 28, 2019.
  27. ^ Mohr, Ian (February 28, 2019). "Graydon Carter sells West Village pad to Broadway producer". Page Six. Retrieved February 28, 2019.
  28. ^ a b "The wrath of Rudin". New York Post. February 1, 2012. Retrieved November 7, 2018.
  29. ^ "Broadway's 'Groundhog Day' Will Close Sept. 17". Retrieved November 7, 2018.
  30. ^ "Scott Rudin Dresses Down NY Times Theater Reporter". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved February 28, 2019.
  31. ^ Healy, Patrick (May 1, 2013). "The Testament of Toibin: A Tony Nod, and a Closing Notice". ArtsBeat. Retrieved February 28, 2019.
  32. ^ Viagas, Robert (October 26, 2016). "Hollywood Reporter Critic Continues Dustup with Front Page Producer". Playbill. Retrieved February 28, 2019.
  33. ^ a b c d Mike Fleming, Jr., Scott Rudin Apologizes After Leak Of Sony’s Hacked Racially Insensitive E-Mails On Barack Obama, Deadline, December 11, 2014
  34. ^ a b c Variety Staff, Sony’s Amy Pascal Apologizes for Obama Emails, Variety, December 11, 2014
  35. ^ a b c d e f Christopher Rosen, Scott Rudin & Amy Pascal Apologize After Racially Insensitive Emails About Obama Leak, The Huffington Post, December 11, 2014
  36. ^ Siegel, Tatiana (April 17, 2014). "Harvey Weinstein and Scott Rudin's Former Underlings (and Now Power Insiders) Spill Stories". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved April 13, 2016.
  37. ^ Callahan, Maureen (December 14, 2014). "The man known as Hollywood's biggest a-hole". Page Six. Retrieved February 28, 2019.
  38. ^ "The Most Feared Man in Town". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved February 28, 2019.
  39. ^ O'Falt, Chris (October 18, 2017). "It's Time to Shatter the Harvey Myth: Weinstein Was Shitty at His Job".
  40. ^ Siegel, Robert (February 7, 2008). "On Screen and Off, Producer Scott Rudin Adapts". All Things Considered. NPR. Retrieved April 12, 2016.
  41. ^ Oscars (February 28, 2008), "No Country for Old Men" winning Best Picture, retrieved February 28, 2019
  42. ^ "The Envelope: Hollywood's Awards and Industry Insider - Los Angeles Times".

External links[edit]