March 1, 1969
With parallel careers on the screen and the stage, Jez Butterworth was one of the most prolific writers of his generation. Born in London in 1969, Butterworth fell in love with theater as a teenager watching his older brother Tom act in a Cambridge University production of Brian Friel's "Translations." Butterworth would eventually attend Cambridge himself. He spent his time there honing his craft as a writer and only a few years after graduating, he premiered his first play "Mojo" at the Royal Court Theatre. The breakout production garnered him enough buzz that he was able to adapt and direct a film version of the play in 1997. His next play "Birthday Girl" premiered at the Royal Court in 2001 and followed a similar track, this time with mega-star Nicole Kidman in the leading role. With his reputation firmly established, Butterworth continued to mount successful new plays over the coming years, earning particular praise for 2009's "Jerusalem," which moved to Broadway the following year. Meanwhile, Butterworth was also working as a screenwriter, penning the scripts for major films like 2010's political thriller "Fair Game" (2010). His 2012 play "The River" earned rave reviews and made the jump to Broadway like his previous work, just as Butterworth was contributing to the screenplays for "Edge of Tomorrow" (2014), "Black Mass" (2015), and "Spectre" (2015). His next play, "The Ferryman," a story set during "the Troubles" in Northern Ireland, premiered at the Royal Court in 2017 and proved his most highly praised work to date, successfully moving to Broadway the following year. At the same time that "The Ferryman" was proving such a success, Butterworth was creating the historical TV series "Britannia" (Amazon, 2017-), penning several episodes himself. In 2019, he collaborated with brother John-Henry as well as Jason Keller and James Mangold on the script for the film "Ford v Ferrari" (2019).