BRYAN SINGER (Director, Story) became the focus of considerable attention in 1995 when his second full-length feature, The Usual Suspects, was released to critical and commercial acclaim. With an impressive cast that included Gabriel Byrne, Kevin Spacey, Kevin
Stephen Baldwin and Chazz Palmenteri, the young director (28 at the time) beat a slew of odds by bringing the $6 million, 35-day shoot in on time and under budget. The Usual Suspects won two Academy Awards that year: Kevin Spacey for Best Supporting Actor and Christopher McQuarrie for Best Original Screenplay.
His third feature film was 1998's dramatic thriller Apt Pupil, which starred Ian
McKellen, Brad Renfro, Bruce Davison and David Schwimmer. The film tells the story of a sixteen year- old high school student (Renfro) who discovers that a Nazi war criminal
(MeKellen) has been quietly living in his hometown. Apt Pupil was well-received and garnered several awards and nominations for its actors and filmmakers.
Singer's lifelong fascination with the art of cinema became a reality in his early teens when he began shooting 8mm films. After attending the prestigious School of Visual Arts in New York, he moved to Los Angeles where he began undergraduate studies at the University of Southern California. It was during this period that his ambition to become a filmmaker intensified.
After graduating from USC, he wrote and directed Lion's Den, an award-winning 25- minute film chronicling the lives of five high school friends who reunite after graduation. Singer called upon his childhood friend Ethan Hawke to star in the 16mm, $15,000 project. Lion's Den opened the doors to Singer's co-writing, producing and directing Public Access, his first full- length film project, which won the Grand Jury Prize at the 1993 Sundance Film Festival.
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