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JERSEY GIRL

In the few years since his entry into the indie film community, KEVIN SMITH has seen it all - from the surprise critical and commercial success he received for his debut film Clerks, to the disappointing critical and commercial drubbing he took on his second outing Mallrats. He caught a break on his third film, the critically hailed Chasing Amy, and managed not to get killed by the religious zealots over his fourth film, the comedic meditation Dogma. With the aptly titled Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, Smith wrapped up the five film Jersey Trilogy and headed for more grown up territory with the forthcoming Jersey Girl. The Miramax film stars longtime Smith collaborators Ben Affleck and George Carlin, as well as Jennifer Lopez and Liv Tyler.

Along the way, Smith has also found time to make himself a nuisance by smearing his name all over John Pierson's Indie Film bible, Spike, Mike, Slackers and Dykes. He's published the screenplays to all five of his previously released films, written comic books featuring not only his own characters (the multiple-printed Clerks and Jay and Silent Bob), but also legendary mainstays of the superhero world (the award-winning Daredevil and Spider-Man and the Black Cat at Marvel Comics, and the award-winning Green Arrow at DC Comics), and written a monthly column for UK based Arena Magazine.

With his View Askew partner, Scott Mosier, he's also executive-produced four low budget, first film efforts (including Bryan Johnson's Lion's Gate release Vulgar) and one large budget, multiple Academy Award winner (Good Will Hunting). Besides Mallrats, however, Smith has survived other humbling "creative” experiences which he inexplicably has failed to suppress— such as his ill-fated Superman Lives screenplay for Warner Brothers, and his animated series version of Clerks for ABC primetime, which the network unceremoniously aired only twice.

Smith was one of the first filmmakers to venture into cyberspace, establishing the insanely popular View Askewniverse website (www.viewaskew.com) in the mid-nineties and more recently Movie Poop Shoot (www.moviepoopshoot.com), And if the film thing doesn't pan out, he owns a comic book store – Jay and Silent Bob's Secret Stash, in beautiful downtown Red Bank, New Jersey.

As for the hood ornaments he's collected, there's plenty of tin to go around: the Filmmaker's Trophy at Sundance for Clerks; the Prix de la Jeunesse and the International Critic's Week Award at the Cannes Film Festival, also for Clerks: The Independent Spirit Award for Best Screenplay for Chasing Amy, and a Humanitas Award for Good Will Hunting. Smith also received the Defender of Democracy Award from Norman Lear's People for the American Way organization for his production of Dogma. For his writing in the comics field, Smith has received a Harvey Award, a Wizard Fan Award, an Eagle Award, and had Green Arrow Quiver named as one of 2003's Best Books for Young Adults by the American Library Association's Young Adult Library Service. In the fall of 2002, the town of Paulsboro in NJ named a street after him: Kevin Smith Way.

Yet at the end of the day, the two titles Smith touts most proudly are "husband” and "father.” He married wife Jennifer in April '99 and celebrated the birth of their daughter, Harley Quinn, in June of that same year (you do the math).

 

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