John Logan
John David Logan

(1961-09-24) September 24, 1961 (age 60)
EducationNorthwestern University
OccupationPlaywright, screenwriter, producer

John David Logan (born September 24, 1961) is an American playwright, screenwriter, film producer, and television producer.

He is known for his work as a screenwriter for such films as Ridley Scott's Gladiator (2000), Martin Scorsese's The Aviator (2004) and Hugo (2011), Tim Burton's Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (2007), and Sam Mendes' Skyfall (2012).

He is a three-time Academy Award nominee; twice for Best Original Screenplay for Gladiator (2000) and The Aviator (2004) and once for Best Adapted Screenplay for Hugo (2011). He is also a two time Tony Award nominee for Best Play for Red in 2010 and Best Book of a Musical for Moulin Rouge! in 2021. He also was nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Writing for a Limited Series or Movie for RKO 281 in 2000.

Early life

Logan was born in San Diego on September 24, 1961. His parents immigrated to the United States from Northern Ireland via Canada.[citation needed] The youngest of three children, he has an older brother and sister. Logan grew up in California and Millburn, New Jersey, where he graduated from Millburn High School in 1979.[1] He moved to Chicago to attend Northwestern University, where he graduated in 1983.[2]


Logan was a successful playwright in Chicago for many years before turning to screenwriting. His first play, Never the Sinner, tells the story of the infamous Leopold and Loeb case. Subsequent plays include Hauptmann, about the Lindbergh baby kidnapping, and Riverview, a musical melodrama set at Chicago's famed amusement park.

His play Red, about artist Mark Rothko, was produced by the Donmar Warehouse, London, in December 2009,[3] and on Broadway in 2010, where it received six Tony Awards, the most of any play, including best play, best direction of a play for Michael Grandage and best featured actor in a play for Eddie Redmayne. Redmayne and Alfred Molina had originated their roles in London and also performed on Broadway, for a limited run ending in late June.[4]

Logan wrote Any Given Sunday and the television film RKO 281, before gaining an Academy Award nomination for co-writing (with David Franzoni and William Nicholson) the Best Picture winner Gladiator in 2000. He received another nomination for writing The Aviator (2004), starring Leonardo DiCaprio and directed by Martin Scorsese. Other notable films written by Logan include Star Trek: Nemesis, The Time Machine, The Last Samurai, and the Tim Burton musical Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, for which he received a Golden Globe Award.

Logan's feature films include Rango, an animated feature starring Johnny Depp and directed by Gore Verbinski; the film adaptation of Shakespeare's Coriolanus, directed by and starring Ralph Fiennes; Hugo, an adaptation of the book The Invention of Hugo Cabret, directed by Martin Scorsese; and the James Bond film Skyfall, along with Neal Purvis and Robert Wade. He wrote the Bond film, Spectre (2015).

Two plays by Logan premiered in 2013; Peter and Alice, directed by Michael Grandage and starring Judi Dench and Ben Whishaw opened in London at the Noël Coward Theatre on March 25, 2013 and I'll Eat You Last: A Chat with Sue Mengers, directed by Joe Mantello and starring Bette Midler, opened on Broadway at the Booth Theatre on April 24, 2013.[5]

He also created the 2014 television series Penny Dreadful starring Josh Hartnett, Eva Green and Timothy Dalton, for which he served as sole writer until it concluded with its third season.

In November 2015, Logan was reported to have rewritten the script for Alien: Covenant.[6][7] During the audio commentary of Alien: Covenant, Scott mentions that Logan has already started writing Alien: Covenant 2.[8]

In November 2018, it was announced that Showtime would produce a follow-up to the 2014 television series Penny Dreadful entitled Penny Dreadful: City of Angels, which takes place in Los Angeles in 1938. Logan was the creator, executive producer, and sole writer for the show, which premiered in 2020.

Superhero, a new musical by Logan and Tom Kitt, had its world premiere production Off-Broadway at Second Stage Theatre, with an official opening night on February 28, 2019.[9]

In November 2019, it was reported that Bohemian Rhapsody producer Graham King is planning to produce a Michael Jackson biopic, with the screenplay written by Logan.[10]



Year Title Writer Producer Director Co-writer(s)
1999 Bats Yes Executive Louis Morneau
Any Given Sunday Yes No Oliver Stone Oliver Stone and Daniel Pyne
2000 Gladiator Yes No Ridley Scott
2002 The Time Machine Yes Co-producer Simon Wells
Star Trek: Nemesis Yes No Stuart Baird Rick Berman and Brent Spiner
2003 Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas Yes No Tim Johnson
Patrick Gilmore
The Last Samurai Yes No Edward Zwick Edward Zwick and Marshall Herskovitz
2004 The Aviator Yes No Martin Scorsese
2007 Sweeney Todd: The Demon
Barber of Fleet Street
Yes Yes Tim Burton
2011 Rango Yes No Gore Verbinski Gore Verbinski and James Ward Byrkit
Coriolanus Yes Yes Ralph Fiennes
Hugo Yes No Martin Scorsese
2012 Skyfall Yes No Sam Mendes Neal Purvis and Robert Wade
2014 Jamie Marks Is Dead No Executive Carter Smith
2015 Spectre Yes No Sam Mendes Jez Butterworth, Neal Purvis and Robert Wade
2016 Genius Yes Yes Michael Grandage
2017 Alien: Covenant Yes No Ridley Scott Dante Harper
TBA Untitled John Logan film Yes No John Logan Directorial debut


Year Title Writer Executive Producer Notes
1996 Tornado! Yes No Television film
1999 RKO 281 Yes No Television film
2014–2016 Penny Dreadful Yes Yes Creator
2020 Penny Dreadful: City of Angels Yes Yes



Main article: List of awards and nominations received by John Logan


  1. ^ "Millburn High Students Hear from Tony and Oscar Award-Winning Writer", TAP into Millburn, November 16, 2010. Accessed July 3, 2019. "On November 11, some Millburn High School drama and film students learned firsthand about playwriting and screenwriting from the 2010 Tony Award winner, John Logan. Logan, a 1979 graduate of Millburn High School, was invited back to his alma mater by student Ben Lippman, whose mother Janice was a college classmate of Logan’s at Northwestern University."
  2. ^ Stockwell, Anne (March 1, 2005). "Logan's run: one of Hollywood's hottest screenwriters, The Aviator's John Logan proves that you don't have to be straight to write the blockbusters". The Advocate.
  3. ^ "Red". Donmar Warehouse. February 6, 2010. Archived from the original on March 11, 2010. Retrieved March 16, 2010.
  4. ^ "Time Is Short to See Tony Winners" by Patrick Healy, The New York Times, June 14, 2010 (p. C1 2010-06-15 New York ed.). Retrieved 2010-06-14.
  5. ^ Gans, Andrew. Bette Midler Is Showbiz Agent Sue Mengers in I'll Eat You Last, Opening on Broadway April 24" Archived April 29, 2013, at the Wayback Machine Playbill, April 24, 2013
  6. ^ Schaefer, Sandy (November 11, 2015). "Alien Paradise Lost Script To Be Rewritten By John Logan". ScreenRant. Retrieved November 27, 2017.
  7. ^ Lodge, Guy (November 5, 2015). "Watch Ridley Scott Receive His Star On The Hollywood Walk Of Fame". Variety. Retrieved November 27, 2017.
  8. ^ Chitwood, Adam (September 1, 2017). "38 Thing We Learned From Ridley Scott's Alien Covenant Audio Commentary". Collider. Retrieved November 27, 2017.
  9. ^ Clement, Olivia (October 23, 2018). "Thom Sesma and More Will Join Kate Baldwin and Bryce Pinkham in Superhero Musical". Playbill. Retrieved January 10, 2019.
  10. ^ "Michael Jackson Biopic In the Works from 'Bohemian Rhapsody' Producer". Billboard. November 22, 2019.