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Allison Anders

About this Artist

ALLISON ANDERS is an award-­‐winning film and television writer and director. She attended UCLA film school and in 1984 and had her first professional break working for her film mentor Wim Wenders on his movie Paris, Texas. After graduation Anders had her first film debut, Border Radio, which she co-­‐wrote and co-­‐directed with Kurt Voss. The influential indie film examined the Los Angeles punk scene in the 1980s’ and went on to be nominated by the Independent Feature Project for Best First Feature, and recently had its TCM network premiere, as well as a DVD release on the prestigious Criterion Collection label.  Anders and Voss would partner again on Sugar Town, another film about the Los Angeles music industry, starring several of their friends, including the lead singer of X, John Doe.  Sugar Town was also nominated for two Independent Spirit Awards.

Anders film Gas Food Lodging premiered at Sundance Film Festival in 1992, the year that brought the New American Film Movement to the attention of critics as well as the industry.  Her fellow directors premiering their work this same year at the festival were Quentin Tarantino, Alex Rockwell, (both of whom she would go on to work with on Four Rooms), Greg Araki, Tom DiCillo, and other trailblazing filmmakers.  Anders  Mi Vida Loca (My Crazy Life) followed, set in the pre-­‐gentrified Echo Park,  a film which has become a cult classic, especially amongst Latinos, African Americans, Native Americans, and other indigenous young people and subcultures.

Music has always had a strong significant place in Anders work. Her film Grace Of My Heart set during the Brill Building era and spanning some of the many changes in music in the 1960s, put together songwriting teams, including for the first time Burt Bacharach and Elvis Costello,  to create original music inspired by the era with some of the great Wrecking Crew studio players of time period.  

In 2001, Don Cheadle was nominated for an Emmy® for Best Supporting Actor for his work on Anders’ film Things Behind the Sun and the film won the prestigious Peabody Award.   Throughout her career she has been recognized for her achievements in film and nominated for various awards and prizes, other major highlights include a New York Film Critics Circle Award, as well as the prestigious MacArthur Foundation Fellowship.  

Anders is also well known in television for directing episodes of hit-­‐shows such as Sex and the City, Gross Pointe, Cold Case, The L Word, Men in Trees, What About Brian?, Southland,  The Mentalist and this year completed episodes of Orange Is The New Black and Gang Related.

In 2003, Anders became a Professor of the Film and Media Studies Department at UC Santa Barbara.  Anders and her musician daughter Tiffany Anders together co-­‐founded the “Don’t Knock the Rock Film and Music Festival” in Los Angeles, a celebration of music on film and live performances in its 10th year.Anders recent film “Strutter” had its Los Angeles premiere April 2013 and the film she directed for Lifetime TV Ring Of Fire” on the life of country singer June Carter Cash with singer Jewel in the title role premiered in May 2013 and was nominated for 4 Emmy’s including a Best Director nomination for Anders.  Currently Anders is developing a TV pilot with partner Terry Graham for AMC, and the team is co-­‐writing a script, which Anders will direct, on legendary rockabilly singer Wanda Jackson.