Douglas Kennedy


Jury member for the 42nd American Film Festival

Born in Manhattan in 1955, he grew up on the Upper West Side, studied at the Collegiate School (the oldest high school in New York), at Bowdoin College (Maine), before leaving for Trinity College in Dublin in 1974. Back in New York, he worked as a stage manager in second-rate Broadway theaters, before deciding, in 1977, to go back to Dublin for a few months... Forty years later, he still lives on this side of the Atlantic.

In Dublin, he co-founded a theater company and then joined the National Theatre of Ireland as administrator of the experimental branch. He spent five years there (1978-1983), during which time he began to write at night. In 1980, he sold his first play to BBC Radio 4, which commissioned two others. In 1983, he resigned to devote himself exclusively to writing. He became a freelance journalist, notably for the Irish Times where he wrote a column from 1984 to 1986, and then moved to London in 1988, when his first book - a travelogue in Egypt - was published and his career as a freelance journalist also took off. In 1994, his first novel, Cul-de-sac, was published and made into a film in 1997 by Stephan Elliott under the title Welcome to Woop Woop. His second novel, The Man Who Wanted to Live His Life, was an international success (it was also adapted to the cinema in 2010 by the director Éric Lartigau), the first of a long series of literary successes with both critics and the public.

Translated into 22 languages and living between Maine, Montreal, London, Paris and Berlin, he is today one of the favorite authors of the French, with nearly 7 million copies sold in France for all his titles, several of which have been or are being adapted for the cinema.


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