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Shawn Levy (born c. 1968) is a Canadian producer, director and actor.

He is an executive producer and director of Stranger Things and appeared in a cameo role in Season 1. He is the founder and principal of production company 21 Laps Entertainment.

Biography

Early Life and Career

Levy was born to a Jewish family in Montreal, Quebec. As a teenager, he attended St. George's High School and Stagedoor Manor Performing Arts Training Center in New York. Levy graduated from Yale University in 1989 majoring in Performing Arts. He received a MFA from the USC School of Cinematic Arts in 1994.

Levy has a production deal with 20th Century Fox. He produced the 2012 Ben Stiller, Vince Vaughn, Jonah Hill comedy The Watch, which was directed by Akiva Schaffer. His television company 21 Laps produces the ABC/Fox comedy series Last Man Standing and the science fiction Netflix series Stranger Things.

Levy's acting debut was in Zombie Nightmare (1986), a low-budget horror film in which he portrayed the character Jim Bratten, the leader of a group of teenagers. The film is best known for being featured in an episode of Mystery Science Theater 3000. He appeared in the 1988 Liberace: Behind the Music, as a post-Scott Thorson acquaintance of Liberace. His television acting resume consists of a guest spot on 21 Jump Street, a recurring role on Beverly Hills, 90210, and a role on 30 Rock as TV producer Scottie Shofar.

In December 2017, Netflix announced a 4-year contract with Levy. Due to the successful seasons of Stranger Things, he will create TV projects exclusively for the streaming entertainment company.

Levy was initially announced as the director of the film version of Minecraft, but has since left the project. He is the latest director attached to the film adaptation of the Uncharted video game series, following David O. Russell and Neil Burger. Joe Carnahan worked with Levy to produce the script for the film, but Levy left the project on December 19, 2018.  Levy will also direct a film based on long-running children's series Sesame Street, which will be the show's third motion picture following Sesame Street Presents: Follow that Bird and The Adventures of Elmo in Grouchland, and its first in nearly two decades.

In March 2018, it was announced that Levy will produce the film adaptation of the slasher novel There's Someone Inside Your House by Stephanie Perkins under his 21 Laps Entertainment label, alongside James Wan's Atomic Monster studio for Netflix.

Filmography

Film

Year Title Director Producer
1997 Address Unknown Yes No
Just in Time Yes No
2002 Big Fat Liar Yes No
2003 Just Married Yes No
Cheaper by the Dozen Yes No
2006 The Pink Panther Yes No
Night at the Museum Yes Yes
2009 Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian Yes Yes
2010 Date Night Yes Yes
2011 Real Steel Yes Yes
2013 The Internship Yes Yes
2014 This Is Where I Leave You Yes Yes
Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb Yes Yes
2020 Free Guy Yes Yes
TBA Starman Yes Yes
The Fall Yes Yes
Crater Yes Yes


Producer Only

Year Title Director Notes
2001 I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus John Shepphird
2005 Cheaper by the Dozen 2 Adam Shankman
2008 What Happens in Vegas Tom Vaughan
The Rocker Peter Cattaneo
2009 The Pink Panther 2 Harald Zwart Executive producer
2012 The Watch Akiva Schaffer
2013 The Spectacular Now James Ponsoldt
2014 Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible,

No Good, Very Bad Day

Miguel Arteta
2016 Arrival Denis Villeneuve Nominated- Academy Award for Best Picture

Nominated- AACTA International Award for Best Film
Nominated- BAFTA Award for Best Film

Why Him? John Hamburg
2017 Fist Fight Richie Keen
Table 19 Jeffrey Blitz
2018 The Darkest Minds Jennifer Yuh Nelson
Kin Jonathan Baker

Josh Baker

TBA The Violent Heart Kerem Sanga Filming
Untitled third Sesame Street film Jonathan Krisel
There's Someone Inside Your House Patrick Brice Pre-production

Acting Roles (Film)

Year Title Role Notes
1986 Zombie Nightmare Jim Bratten
1987 Wild Thing Paul
1988 Liberace: Behind the Music Glenn
The Kiss Terry O'Connell
1991 Our Shining Moment J.J.
1993 Made in America Dwayne
1997 Address Unknown Cameo
Just in Time Photographer
2002 Big Fat Liar Wolf Party Guest
2003 Cheaper by the Dozen Press/Room Reporter
2005 Cheaper by the Dozen 2 Hospital Intern
2009 Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian Guy in Commercial
2013 The Internship Guy in Nap Pod

Television

Year Title Director Executive

Producer

Notes
1996–1998 The Secret World of Alex Mack Yes No 6 episodes
1997–1998 The Journey of Allen Strange Yes No 3 episodes
1998–1999 Lassie Yes No 4 episodes
1998 First Wave Yes No Episode "Marker 262"
1998–1999 Animorphs Yes No 5 episodes
1998–2003 The Famous Jett Jackson Yes No 47 episodes
1999 So Weird Yes No
2000 In a Heartbeat Yes No 2 episodes
2001 Jett Jackson: The Movie Yes Yes TV movie
2002 Do Over Yes No Episode "The Block Party"
Birds of Prey Yes No Episode "Nature of the Beast"
2006 Pepper Dennis Yes Yes Episode "Pilot"
2011–2016 Last Man Standing No Yes 79 episodes
2014 Cristela No Yes Episode "Pilot"
2016 Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Yes No Episode "Kimmy Drives a Car!"
2016–present Stranger Things Yes Yes Directed episodes "Holly, Jolly", "The Body", "The Pollywog", "Will the Wise", “The Case Of The Missing Lifeguard” and “The Sauna Test” while also doing a cameo in the episode "The Body"
2017 Imaginary Mary Yes No Episodes "Pilot" and "The Mom Seal"

Acting Roles (televison)

Year Title Role Episode(s)
1989 China Beach Lieutenant "Dear China Beach"
1989–1990 Tour of Duty SP4 Budd Sills 2 episodes
1990 21 Jump Street Lance "Awomp-Bomp-Aloobomb, Aloop Bamboom"
Lifestories Luke Conforti "Art Conforti"
1993 Beverly Hills, 90210 Howard Banchek 2 episodes
Step by Step Daniel "Way Off-Broadway"
2000 The Famous Jett Jackson Producer 3 episodes
2009 30 Rock Scottie Shofar "The Problem Solvers"
2016 Stranger Things Morgue Worker "Chapter Four: The Body"

Stranger Things

Levy got involved with Stranger Things when Dan Cohen, Vice President of 21 Laps, handed him the pilot script. He fell in love with the project and invited the Duffers to his office.[1]

Levy took a hands-on producing role on the show. When the Duffers were set to film and direct the third episode, the scripts for the second half of the season were not finished. Levy offered to direct episodes three and four so they could focus on the writing.[2]

Credits

Director

Season 1

Season 2

Season 3

External links

Trivia

  • Because of his role in the successful seasons of Stranger Things, Netflix issued a 4-year contract with Levy so that he would create TV projects exclusively for the streaming entertainment company.
  • He made a cameo appearance in The Body.

References

  1. "‘Stranger Things’: Shawn Levy on Directing Winona Ryder, Netflix’s Viral Model" Variety. July 22, 2016.
  2. "How the man behind Netflix hit 'Stranger Things' is taking over Hollywood" Business Insider. September 7, 2016.
  3. 3.0 3.1 "‘Stranger Things’ Season 2: Shawn Levy Confirms He’s Directing Again; Teases Season 3Collider. November 8, 2016.
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