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F. GARY GRAY (Director) is recognized as one of Hollywood's most celebrated and versatile directors, known for consistently pushing the envelope, spotting new trends and delivering innovative, exciting material to a diverse audience. With dynamic visuals and storytelling flair, he continues to showcase his intensity and passion for film with each new project.

His first film, the smash hit Friday starring rapper-producer Ice Cube and Chris Tucker, launched a franchise that went on to gross more than $125 million. He next directed the award-winning heist picture Set It Off, with Jada Pinkett Smith, and then The Negotiator, with a $50 million budget that was the highest ever for a film directed by an African-American filmmaker at that time. Starring Academy Award winner Kevin Spacey and Oscar nominee Samuel L. Jackson, the drama earned Gray both Best Film and Best Director awards at the 1998 Acapulco Film Festival.

In 2003, Gray directed The Italian Job, a visually arresting, dramatically taut thriller with an all-star cast including Academy Award® winner Charlize Theron and Oscar® nominee Mark Wahlberg. His thrilling boat chase scenes along the canals of Venice, Italy, and dynamic car chases shot in downtown Los Angeles set a new standard for event filmmaking. Gray garnered the Best Director award at the 2004 Black American Film Festival for his work on the film, which grossed more than $175 million worldwide. 

Gray's other features include the action-drama A Man Apart, starring Vin Diesel, and the crime comedy Be Cool, based on Elmore Leonard's bestselling novel. But the director's repertoire extends beyond feature films to music videos, television and new media. He began directing music videos at the age of 20 and directed some of the most iconic music videos of all time, for artists such as Dr. Dre, TLC, Mary J. Blige, Outkast and Jay-Z. 

A Grammy nominee for directing Stevie Wonder and Babyface's "How Come, How Long,” Gray swept the 1995 MTV Music Video Awards, receiving four awards for TLC's "Waterfalls” including Video of the Year, as well as Best Rap Video Award for Dr. Dre's "Keep Their Heads Ringin'.” That same year, Gray earned Billboard's Best Rap Video and Best New Artist Rap Video awards. To date, he has received 16 awards and 23 nominations for his direction of various music videos, including an Image Award from the NAACP for "Waterfalls.” His video for Ice Cube's "It Was a Good Day” is listed on Rolling Stone magazine's list of "Top 100 Best Videos of All Time.” 

Gray received The Ivan Dixon Award of Achievement from the Black Hollywood Education and Resource Center and was named one of the "50 Best and Brightest African Americans under 40” by Black Enterprise magazine. He was honored by the African American Film Critics Association with their 2004 Special Achievement Award and was recognized by the Artist Empowerment Coalition with the Artist Empowerment Award that same year. 

Through his production company, Nucleus Entertainment, Inc., Gray is producing several film projects while also pursuing opportunities in both new and traditional media. 

Gray is a longstanding supporter of the Tom Bradley Youth & Family Center in Los Angeles and works with Urban Compass in Watts, where he created the F. Gary Gray Filmmaking Workshop. Its mission is to inspire underserved youth to tell their unique stories through the art of filmmaking.

An avid photographer and extensive traveler, Gray has also taught cinema for the Franco-American Cultural Fund. His journeys throughout the world have shaped his global perspective and given him an opportunity to listen, communicate and share with people from all walks of life.

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