Mark Harris
November 2014
November 2014
Born (1963-11-25) November 25, 1963 (age 60)
  • Journalist
  • author
Alma materYale University
  • Film
  • popular culture
(m. 2008)

Mark Harris (born November 25, 1963)[1] is an American journalist and author. He began his career at Entertainment Weekly as a columnist and eventually became the magazine's executive editor. His writing has also appeared in Slate and New York magazine.

Harris has written three books relating to American film history. His first book, Pictures at a Revolution: Five Movies and the Birth of the New Hollywood, about changes in Hollywood in the 1960s and the rise of the New Hollywood movement, was published in 2008.[2] His second book, Five Came Back: A Story of Hollywood and the Second World War, examined five American directors who made films for the U.S. military during World War II. It was published in 2014 and later adapted into a 2017 Netflix documentary series, Five Came Back.[3] His third book, Mike Nichols: A Life, a biography about the filmmaker, was published in 2021.[4][5]


After graduating from Yale University in 1985,[6] Harris worked at Entertainment Weekly.[7] He began as a columnist and later became executive editor of the magazine.[8]

Since 2008, he has written and released three books. The first, Pictures at a Revolution: Five Movies and the Birth of the New Hollywood, an examination of how the American film industry changed during the 1960s, was published in February 2008. Writing in The New York Times Book Review, the author Jim Shepard called it "full of pleasures ... He seems to have talked to virtually everyone who’s still around, and to great effect ... Mark Harris's legwork and intelligence transport us gratefully back to that exhilarating moment when it was all still about to occur."[2]

In February 2014, Harris published his second book, Five Came Back: A Story of Hollywood and the Second World War. It is an examination of five U.S. film directors — John Ford, William Wyler, John Huston, Frank Capra and George Stevens — and their frontline work during World War II.[9] The book was well received, with The New York Times calling it, "a tough-minded, information-packed and irresistibly readable work",[10] and The Washington Post writing that the book "has all the elements of a good movie: fascinating characters, challenges, conflicts and intense action".[9] The trade publication Booklist wrote, "It's hardly news that the movies affect and are affected by the broader canvas of popular culture and world history, but Harris – perhaps more successfully than any other writer, past or present – manages to find in that symbiotic relationship the stuff of great stories," calling the book, "narrative nonfiction that is as gloriously readable as it is unfailingly informative".[11] In 2017, the book was adapted into a three-part Netflix documentary series Five Came Back.[3]

His third book, Mike Nichols: A Life, was published in February 2021 to critical acclaim.[4][5][8]

Harris is a columnist and feature writer for New York magazine.[12]

Personal life

Harris is married to the playwright Tony Kushner. In attendance at the couple's May 2003 commitment ceremony were the director George C. Wolfe, the playwright Larry Kramer, Mike Nichols and Diane Sawyer, the actresses Linda Emond and Kathleen Chalfant and, The New York Times reported, "dozens of aunts, uncles, nieces and nephews, many of them crying".[13] Theirs was the first same-sex commitment ceremony to appear in the "Vows" column of The New York Times.[14] They live in New York City and Provincetown, Massachusetts.[15]

In summer 2008 (after Massachusetts had legalized same-sex marriage in 2004, but before New York or the U.S. Supreme Court had done so), they were legally married at the city hall in Provincetown.[16]



  1. ^ "Mark Harris". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango Media. Retrieved September 14, 2021.
  2. ^ a b Shepard, Jim (February 17, 2008). "When Mrs. Robinson Met Dr. Dolittle". The New York Times.
  3. ^ a b Rothman, Lily (February 28, 2017). "See the Trailer for Netflix's New Documentary About World War II and Hollywood". Time. Retrieved February 28, 2017.
  4. ^ a b Tallerico, Brian. "Mike Nichols: A Life is a Must-Read Memoir". Roger Ebert. Retrieved July 6, 2021.
  5. ^ a b Wolcott, James (February 2, 2021). "Mike Nichols's Brilliant Career". New York Times. Retrieved February 4, 2021.
  6. ^ Hepworth, Shelley (March 31, 2017). "Truth, art & propaganda: Lessons from Mark Harris's WWII epic for Netflix". Columbia Journalism Review. Retrieved May 13, 2019.
  7. ^ "Mark Harris". Enetrtainment Weekly. Retrieved July 6, 2021.
  8. ^ a b Lenker, Maureen Lee. "Mark Harris takes us inside his new Mike Nichols biography". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved July 6, 2021.
  9. ^ a b Matthews, Charles (March 14, 2014). "'Five Came Back: A Story of Hollywood and the Second World War' by Mark Harris". Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved July 7, 2021.
  10. ^ Doherty, Thomas (March 2, 2014). "Cameras Shooting in Battle: Five Auteurs and Their World War II Films Mark Harris's Five Came Back Covers Auteurs in Combat". The New York Times.
  11. ^ Ott, Bill (February 15, 2014). "Five Came Back: A Story of Hollywood and the Second World War". Booklist.
  12. ^ "Mark Harris". New York. Retrieved July 6, 2021.
  13. ^ Smith Brady, Lois (May 4, 2003). "Vows: Mark Harris and Tony Kushner". The New York Times'.
  14. ^ McCarter, Jeremy (May 28, 2009). "Tony Kushner's Day: The playwright at the heart of America's cultural moment". Newsweek. Retrieved May 5, 2011.
  15. ^ Sokol, Brett (August 21, 2017). "For Tony Kushner, It's Angels Over the Breakfast Nook". The New York Times. Retrieved September 14, 2021.
  16. ^ Stockwell, Anne (October 8, 2012). "Love Stories: Tony Kushner and Mark Harris". Advocate. Retrieved October 12, 2012.