Cast and Credits
Filmmaker Bio
Press Room

Filmmaker Bio

OREN JACOBY (Director / Producer / Co-writer)

Oren Jacoby is an Oscar® nominated filmmaker who has written, directed, and produced award-winning films for more than two decades. He has made documentaries for the BBC, ABC, HBO, PBS, National Geographic, VH-1, and NHK (Japan).

His last film, Sister Rose’s Passion, was winner of Best Documentary Short at the 2004 Tribeca Film Festival and was nominated for a 2005 Academy Award®.

Recent credits include: Downtown Stories 5 portraits/jam sessions commissioned by Nokia and the Tribeca Film Festival, featuring Rosie Perez and Ed Burns; The Topdog Diaries with the 2002 Pulitzer prize-winning playwright, Suzan-Lori Parks, and performances by Don Cheadle and Jeffrey Wright; The Shakespeare Sessions starring Kevin Kline, Cynthia Nixon, Liev Schreiber, and Charles S. Dutton; The Beatles Revolution, for ABC and VH-1, Swingin’ with Duke, starring Wynton Marsalis and Sam Shepard: Stalking Himself; Master Thief on the ‘art heist of the century’; and Success for the Emmy award-winning PBS series, The Irish in America.

Jacoby also wrote, produced and directed The Return Ticket, adapted from a short story by Anton Chekhov; Ghosts of the Bayou; Idols of the Game, featuring Michael Jordan; Benny Goodman: Adventures in the Kingdom of Swing for American Masters and The Second Russian Revolution, a behind the scenes investigation of the collapse of the USSR, called ‘the best BBC series of the decade’ by the London Independent.

He is currently producing The Italian Secretary, based on the novel my Caleb Carr and The Marquis de Lafayette (working title). His has just completed The Last Girl on Earth a romantic-comedy short commissioned by the Tribeca Film Festival based on a screenplay by Richard Dresser.

In addition to being honored by the Academy and the Tribeca Film Festival, he has won CINE Golden Eagles, the Royal Television Society (UK) journalism award, and the MacArthur Golden Owl award, as well as grants from the American Film Institute and ITVS (The Independent Television Service).

Jacoby has directed plays at Theater for the New City, the Williamstown Theater Festival, Ensemble Studio Theater, the West Bank Café and regional theaters, including new works by Richard Dresser, Quincy Long, and Franz Xavier Kroetz. He collaborated with Adrian Hall on an adaptation of Robert Penn Warren’s All the King’s Men, with songs by Randy Newman, at the Dallas Theater Center and Trinity Rep. His stage adaptation of Ralph Ellison’s Invisible Man was performed in a reading at the Tribeca Theater Festival, in a co-production with the Classical Theater of Harlem. He wrote the screenplay for Shores of a Dream (in development) and is co-author with Forrest Stone of the original screenplay Tarzan Brown for the Oxford Film Company. He attended Brown University, RISD and the Directing Program of the Yale School of Drama and is a native New Yorker.

Read the Director's Statement.

JAMES CARROLL (Writer / Producer)

James Carroll was born in Chicago in 1943, and raised in Washington where his father, an Air Force general, served as the Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency. Carroll attended Georgetown University before entering the seminary to train for the Catholic priesthood. He received BA and MA degrees from St. Paul’s College, the Paulist Fathers’ seminary in Washington, and was ordained to the Catholic priesthood in 1969. Carroll served as Catholic Chaplain at Boston University from 1969 to 1974 and then left the priesthood to become a writer.

In 1974 Carroll was Playwright-in-Residence at the Berkshire Theater Festival in Stockbridge, MA. In 1976 he published his first novel, Madonna Red, which was translated into seven languages. Since then he has published nine additional novels, including the New York Times bestsellers Mortal Friends (1978), Family Trade (1982), and Prince of Peace (1984). His novels The City Below (1994) and Secret Father (2003) were named Notable Books of the Year by the New York Times. Carroll’s essays and articles have appeared in The New Yorker, Daedalus, and other publications. His op-ed page column has run weekly in the Boston Globe since 1992.

Carroll’s memoir, An American Requiem: God, My Father, and the War that Came Between Us, received the 1996 National Book Award in nonfiction and other awards. His book Constantine’s Sword: The Church and the Jews: A History, published in 2001, was a New York Times bestseller and was honored as one of the Best Books of 2001 by the Los Angeles Times, the Christian Science Monitor, and others. It was named a Notable Book of the Year by the New York Times, and won the Melcher Book Award, the James Parks Morton Interfaith Award, and National Jewish Book Award in History.

Responding to the Catholic sex abuse crisis in 2002, Carroll published Toward A New Catholic Church: The Promise of Reform. In 2004 he published Crusade: Chronicles of an Unjust War, adapted from his Boston Globe columns since 9/11. In 2006, he published House of War: The Pentagon and the Disastrous Rise of American Power, a history of the Pentagon, which the Chicago Tribune called “the first great non-fiction book of the new millennium.” Among its honors is the PEN-Galbraith award for distinguished non-fiction published in 2005 or 2006. An HBO dramatic series based on House of War is in preparation.

Carroll is a regular participant in on-going Jewish-Christian-Muslim encounters at the Shalom Hartman Institute in Jerusalem. Carroll is a member of the Council of PEN-New England, which he chaired for four years. He has been a Shorenstein Fellow at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University and a Fellow at the Center for the Study of Values in Public Life at the Harvard Divinity School. He is a trustee of the Boston Public Library, and a member of the Dean’s Council at the Harvard Divinity School. Carroll is an elected Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and a Distinguished Scholar-in-Residence at Suffolk University.

James Carroll lives in Boston with his wife, the novelist Alexandra Marshall. They have two grown children.