Ryan at the 2011 Deauville American Film Festival
October 11, 1966 |
Rockford, Illinois, U.S.
|Alma mater||Keith Country Day School|
Shawn Ryan (born October 11, 1966, Rockford, Illinois) is an American screenwriter and television producer best known as the creator and showrunner of the television series The Shield (2002–08) and The Chicago Code (2011). Ryan also co-created the ABC series Last Resort (2012–13), and produced The Unit (2006–09), Lie to Me (2009–10) and Terriers (2010).
Shawn Ryan grew up in Rockford, Illinois. His mother is a schoolteacher and his father is a CPA. He said he had "a very good family upbringing" and was interested in 1970 sitcoms as a child. After graduating from Middlebury College, Ryan got his start in television when he entered and won the Norman Lear Playwriting award sponsored by Columbia Pictures Television (which later became Sony). The award included a $25,000 cash gift and meetings with Columbia's top television producers. Later he was a staff writer on the show Nash Bridges and served as a writer/producer on Angel before creating and acting as Head Writer on The Shield. He was partnered with David Mamet to serve as showrunner for The Unit.
Ryan was set to executive produce Confessions of a Contractor, a 2009 CBS television pilot based on Richard Murphy's book of the same name. The story centres on a successful L.A. contractor who becomes involved with two of his female clients. The production was put on hold when casting contingencies could not be met. He was the show runner for season 2 of Fox's Lie to Me. He was the show runner and executive producer of FX's Terriers. He created the crime drama The Chicago Code. In 2012, Ryan's pilot Last Resort got picked up by ABC for the fall. On November 21, 2012, it was announced that producers had been given enough notice of the network's plans not to pick the show up for a full season and that they were reworking the final episode to function as a series finale and give the fans closure.
On January 2013, CBS picked up Beverly Hills Cop, an hourlong crime procedural with comedic elements, with Ryan on board to pen the script and executive produce along with his MiddKid Productions partner Marney Hochman and Eddie Murphy. The potential series is a follow-up to the Murphy franchise and centers on Foley's son, Aaron (played by Brandon T. Jackson), a cop working in Beverly Hills as he does his part to escape his famous father's shadow. Murphy will reprise his role as the wisecracking detective in the pilot and would recur should the project go to series. Barry Sonnenfeld directed the pilot. In May 2013, the show was not picked up by CBS.
Awards and nominations
Ryan is married to actress Cathy Cahlin Ryan, who starred on The Shield and The Chicago Code. They have two children.
- "Shawn Ryan, The Shield Interview". UGO.com. Retrieved 2010-03-03.
- "Shawn Ryan of The Shield Interview". UGO.com. Retrieved 2010-03-03.
- Meyers, Lawrence (June 2, 2010). Inside the TV Writers' Room: Practical Advice for Succeeding in Television. Syracuse University Press. p. 87. ISBN 0-8156-3241-X.
- "Pilots: 'The Shield' Creator Produces 'Contractor' for CBS". Zap2it.
- "Confessions of a Contractor (News Section)". Retrieved 2010-11-27.
- Goldberg, Lesley. "Shawn Ryan: Martin Scorsese Influenced 'The Chicago Code'". The Hollywood Reporter.
- Shawn Ryan's 'Beverly Hills Cop,' Hart Hanson Crime Drama Among CBS Pilot Orders
- The Days of Yore interview with Shawn Ryan about his path to success
- Los Angeles Times profile of Shawn Ryan
- Writers Guild interview of Shawn Ryan