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JAN DE BONT (Director/Executive Producer) was already one of the most respected cinematographers in the industry when he made his American directorial debut with the blockbuster "Speed." The action thriller catapulted Sandra Bullock to stardom, firmly established Keanu Reeves as an action star, and became one of the highest grossing films of 1994. Two years later, De Bont's second feature, "Twister," opened to a then-record $41.2 million and went on to gross in excess of $600 million worldwide.

Born in Eindhoven, Holland, De Bont studied at the National Film Academy in Amsterdam and was inspired by a new form of independent, low-budget filmmaking, which originated in Paris. He began making professional documentaries while still in film school and went on to gain experience as a director on the popular German comedy series "Express."

De Bont first gained prominence as a cinematographer in Europe, making his debut on 1961's "Paranoia," which won awards at the Berlin, Venice and Oberhausen film festivals. Years later, he lensed "The Wrestler," which marked the directing debut of Paul Verhoeven. De Bont and Verhoeven subsequently teamed on a series of Dutch films, including "Strictly Business," the Oscar-nominated "Turkish Delight," "Keetje Tippel" and "The Fourth Man."

Moving to the United States, De Bont worked with a number of noted directors on such films as John McTieman's "Die Hard," Ridley Scott's "Black Rain," Joel Schumacher's "Flatliners" and Richard Donner's "Lethal Weapon 3." He also continued to collaborate with Paul Verhoeven on the films "Flesh and Blood" and "Basic Instinct."

In 1993, De Bont was offered the opportunity to helm "Speed," which launched his directing career. He later directed the sequel "Speed 2 - Cruise Control." More recently, he served as executive producer on the independent film "SLC Punk," which opened last year's Sundance Film Festival. De Bont and his Blue Tulip Productions will next co-produce "Minority Report," which will star Tom Cruise under the direction of Steven Spielberg.


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