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THE ASSASSINATION OF JESSE JAMES BY THE COWARD ROBERT FORD

SAM SHEPARD (Frank James) is an Oscar-nominated actor as well as a screenwriter, director and a Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright for his 1979 three-act play, "Buried Child.” Shepard's numerous other plays include "Angel City,” "Curse of the Starving Class,” "Killer's Head,” "Action,” "The Mad Dog Blues” "Cowboy Mouth,” "The Rock Garden,” "True West,” "The God of Hell” and "Fool for Love.”

He was one of the writers on Michelangelo Antonioni's "Zabriski Point” in 1970, and later won critical acclaim and a BAFTA nomination for his original screenplay of Wim Wenders' "Paris, Texas.”

As an actor, Shepard made his 1978 film debut in Bob Dylan's "Renaldo and Clara” and went on to impress critics that same year in a starring role, alongside Richard Gere, in Terrence Malick's "Days of Heaven.” A number of strong performances followed, including roles in "Resurrection”; "Raggedy Man”; "Frances,” opposite Jessica Lange; and, particularly, as test pilot Chuck Yeager in Philip Kaufman's "The Right Stuff,” which brought him an Academy Award nomination. He re-teamed with Lange in "Country” and "Crimes of the Heart,” and played the lead in Robert Altman's adaptation of his play "Fool for Love.” Subsequent film credits include "Baby Boom,” "Steel Magnolias,” "Defenseless,” "Thunderheart,” "Bright Angel,” "Voyager,” "The Pelican Brief,” "Snow Falling on Cedars,” "Hamlet,” "All The Pretty Horses,” "The Pledge,” "Swordfish,” "Black Hawk Down,” "The Notebook,” "Stealth,” "Bandidas,” "Don't Come Knocking” and last year's "Walker Payne” and "The Return.” He also wrote and directed the features "Far North” and "Silent Tongue.”

Shepard's notable television films and miniseries have included "Larry McMurtry's Streets of Laredo,” "Lily Dale,” "Purgatory,” "Dash and Lilly” (which earned both Golden Globe and Emmy nominations for his performance as Dashiell Hammett), "One Kill,” "Wild Geese” and the recently aired biodrama "Ruffian.”

Among his upcoming projects are the romantic comedy "The Accidental Husband,” for director Griffin Dunne, set for a 2008 release.

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