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LARA CROFT TOMB RAIDER: THE CRADLE OF LIFE

JAN DE BONT (Director) is a total filmmaker in the European tradition. As a film student in Holland, he much admired the epics, westerns and war movies coming out of Hollywood and their special way of combining emotion with action that helped the audience become a full participant. He demonstrated the same technique when he made his American directing debut 20 years later, in 1994, with "Speed," which launched the film career of Sandra Bullock.

Two years later De Bont's film "Twister" opened to a record-breaking $41.2 million in its first weekend, going on to gross worldwide in excess of $600 million. De Bont followed with "Speed 2: Cruise Control" in 1997 and "The Haunting" in 1999.

De Bont's company Blue Tulip Productions was formed in 1996 and co-produced the science-fiction thriller "Minority Report" starring Tom Cruise and directed by Steven Spielberg. Blue Tulip has a wide range of projects with various studios, including Fox, Warner Bros., Paramount, Universal and MGM.

De Bont was born in Eindhoven, Holland and began making 9mm films at the age of 10. He moved onto 16mm while still in high school. At the National Film Academy in Amsterdam, he saw Stanley Kubrick's "Paths of Glory" and became an unconditional admirer of the director's visual style. De Bont became a charter member of the Dutch New Wave, traveling frequently to Paris to see movies and exchange ideas with directors, like Jean-Luc Godard, who were an inspiration to young filmmakers all over Europe.

Becoming (of necessity) the master of all aspects of the filmmaking process from camera and sound to production design and editing De Bont began making documentaries professionally while still in film school, and after graduating he founded his own production company. Later, he acquired considerable experience working with actors, directing the popular German comedy series "Express," for which he re-staged sketches from "Monty Python's Flying Circus," the cutting edge British series.

De Bont became a cinematographer of renown in Europe where he worked with Paul Verhoeven, among others. He quickly became one of the most sought-after cinematographers in America. He is known for his amazing camera work on such films as

"Black Rain" directed by Ridley Scott, "Die Hard" directed by John McTiernan, "Flatliners" directed by Joel Schumacher, "Lethal Weapon 3" directed by Richard Donner and Paul Verhoeven' s "Basic Instinct," among others.

A great supporter of women as action heroes, De Bont helped launch Helen Hunt's movie career and also Sandra Bullock's. Now he takes up the "Tomb Raider" mantle to work with another female action hero, Angelina Jolie.

De Bont lives in Los Angeles with his wife and two children.

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