Steven E. de Souza
Steven E. de Souza
|Occupation||Screenwriter, director, producer|
|Known for||Die Hard|
Edgar Allan Poe Award for Best Motion Picture
Steven E. de Souza (born November 17, 1947) is an American screenwriter, producer, and director of film and television widely known for writing blockbuster action films like Commando, Die Hard, and Judge Dredd. He is among a handful of screenwriters whose films have earned over US$2 billion at the worldwide box office.
Life and career
De Souza was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the son of Evelyn (Green) and H. Walton Henriques de Souza, who owned a real estate company. He attended Pennsylvania State University, where he was a student of science fiction author Philip Klass (better known by his pseudonym William Tenn). He began his career as a story editor for primetime television series such as The Six Million Dollar Man and The Hardy Boys Mysteries, before graduating to the role of producer and writer. He produced the first season of Knight Rider, and was the creator of the short-lived sci-fi series The Powers of Matthew Star.
De Souza started his film career writing, directing, and producing the low-budget stoner comedy Arnold's Wrecking Co., which won the Special Jury Prize at the 1972 Atlanta Film Festival. Beginning in the early 1980s, he became a prolific screenwriter of feature films, specializing in blockbuster action and thriller films like Commando and Die Hard. He wrote some of the most successful films of the era, including 48 Hrs., The Running Man, The Flintstones, and Die Hard 2. He was frequently hired by studios as a script doctor in order to rewrite preexisting screenplays during production to add more action and humor. He has been nominated twice for the Edgar Allan Poe award, an award given to any piece of media for excellence in mystery writing. The first in 1984 for 48 Hrs. and again in 1989 for Die Hard. De Souza also "won" the 1991 Razzie Award for Worst Screenplay for Hudson Hawk. He wrote and directed the 1994 video game adaptation Street Fighter after being introduced to the franchise by his son. Though the film received negative critical reception and failed to spawn an intended franchise, it has since become a cult classic in some circles.
In 2000, he was honored with the Norman Lear Award for Lifetime Achievement in writing. In 2004, he received the Dr. Bird award, which is given for achievement in the arts to people of Jamaican descent. De Souza appeared in the feature-length documentary Dreams on Spec, which profiled three aspiring screenwriters and featured comments from a number of distinguished writers like James L. Brooks, Nora Ephron, Carrie Fisher, and him. His Web series Unknown Sender became a triple honoree at the 2009 Webby Awards for Best Writing, Best Dramatic Series, and Best Individual Performance.
De Souza has also written for The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times and Premiere, Empire magazine, Buzz, and Fade In. Recently, he was responsible for the critically acclaimed graphic novel re-boot of Will Eisner's classic comic character Sheena, Queen of the Jungle.
|1973||Arnold's Wrecking Co.||Also director|
Larry Gross &
|1983||The Return of Captain Invincible||with
Peter Smalley &
Jeph Loeb &
|Mark L. Lester|
|1986||Jumpin' Jack Flash||Uncredited;||Penny Marshall|
|1987||The Running Man||Paul Michael Glaser|
|Die Hard||with||John McTiernan|
|1990||Die Hard 2||with||Renny Harlin|
|1991||Hudson Hawk||with||Michael Lehmann|
Tom S. Parker &
|Beverly Hills Cop III||John Landis|
|Street Fighter||Also director|
|1995||Judge Dredd||with||Danny Cannon|
|1998||Knock Off||Tsui Hark|
|2003||Lara Croft: Tomb Raider – The Cradle of Life||with
James V. Hart &
|Jan de Bont|
|1974-77||The Six Million Dollar Man||Story editor|
Writer - 3 episodes
|1976||Gemini Man||Story editor - 9 episodes|
Writer - 3 episodes
|1977||Rosetti and Ryan||Story editor - 7 episodes|
Writer - 1 episode
|1977-79||The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries||Story editor - 18 episodes|
Writer - 2 episodes
|1978||The Bionic Woman||Writer - 2 episodes|
|Lucan||Writer - 1 episode|
|1981||Foul Play||Executive story consultant - 6 episodes|
Writer - 2 episodes
|1982||The Renegades||Television film|
|1982-83||The Powers of Matthew Star||Creator|
|Knight Rider||Producer - 20 episodes|
|1984||V||Writer - 1 episode|
Supervising producer - 2 episodes
|1987||The Spirit||Television film
|1991||Tales from the Crypt||Writer/director - 1 episode|
|1993-94||Cadillacs and Dinosaurs||Creator|
|2002-03||Adventure Inc.||Executive producer|
Writer - 7 episodes
Director - 7 episodes
Awards and nominations
- 1973 Atlanta Film Festival Gold Medal Award: Arnold's Wrecking Co.
- 1991 Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Screenplay: Hudson Hawk (with Daniel Waters, Robert Kraft, Bruce Willis)
- 2000 Norman Lear Award for Lifetime Achievement
- 1983 Edgar Allan Poe Award for Best Motion Picture: 48 Hrs. (with Roger Spottiswoode, Walter Hill, Larry Gross)
- 1989 Edgar Allan Poe Award for Best Motion Picture: Die Hard (with Jeb Stuart)
- "Steven E. de Souza on Earwolf". www.earwolf.com. Retrieved September 2, 2017.
- "Steven E. de Souza Writes the Most Explosive Hits". EW.com. July 15, 1994. Retrieved September 2, 2017.
- "Steven E. de Souza Biography (1948?-)". filmreference.com. Retrieved March 16, 2014.
- "H. Walton Henriques De Souza - tribunedigital-mcall". The Morning Call. November 19, 1996. Retrieved June 26, 2017.
- amazon (May 9, 1920). "Remembering Golden Age Science Fiction Author William Tenn". Io9.com. Retrieved June 26, 2017.
- "Arnold's Wrecking Co." Boxoffice Magazine. January 7, 1974.
- "Interview: THE RUNNING MAN Writer Steven E. de Souza on Living in the Future of 1987". ScreenAnarchy. February 28, 2017. Retrieved September 2, 2017.
- "Street Fighter: The Movie — What went wrong | Polygon". polygon.com. Retrieved March 16, 2014.
- "EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW (PART 1): Steven E. DeSouza (writer/director of STREET FIGHTER)". Bristol Bad Film Club. March 19, 2015. Retrieved September 2, 2017.
- "Tomb Raider Chronicles - DE SOUZA SCORES LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT". tombraiderchronicles.com. Retrieved March 16, 2014.
- "Best Writing | 2009 | The Webby Awards Gallery + Archive". webbyawards.com. Archived from the original on October 6, 2012. Retrieved March 16, 2014.
- "Drama: Series | 2009 | The Webby Awards Gallery + Archive". webbyawards.com. Archived from the original on October 10, 2012. Retrieved March 16, 2014.
- "Best Individual Performance | 2009 | The Webby Awards Gallery + Archive". webbyawards.com. Archived from the original on October 25, 2012. Retrieved March 16, 2014.
- Andreeva, Nellie. "Kids Series Producer Cookie Jar Expands into Primetime With Development Slate". Deadline.