Beau Willimon

Beau Willimon
('03SOA)
Beau Willimon is a screenwriter, playwright, producer.  He is the creator of Netflix’s original series House of Cards for which he serves as showrunner and executive producer.  House of Cards recently made television history, earning nine Emmy nominations, including Best Drama, the first online streaming show to ever be so honored. House of Cards earned four Golden Globe nominations, including "Best Television Series, Drama.” The Producers Guild recently nominated Willimon and his fellow producers for The Norman Felton Award for Outstanding Producer of Episodic Television, Drama.  The Writers Guild also honored House of Cards with several nominations and the show won the WGA Award for Best New Series.

Season two premiered on February 14, 2014. In the second season, Francis (Spacey) and Claire (Wright) Underwood continue their ruthless rise to power as threats mount on all fronts. Zoe Barnes (Kate Mara, American Horror Story), an up-and-coming reporter and Francis’s former paramour, is inching closer to the truth about his crimes. President Walker’s (Michel Gill,The Good Wife) billionaire confidante Raymond Tusk (Gerald McRaney, Southland) demands that Francis reciprocate political favors or face retribution. And Claire must confront the increasing glare of the spotlight as it eats away at her and Francis’s once private existence. The Underwoods must overcome these dangers -- past and present -- to avoid losing everything, regardless of collateral damage they leave in their wake.

Willimon’s play Farragut North, became the basis for the motion picture screenplay Ides of March, which he co-wrote with George Clooney and Grant Heslov. Ides of March earned Willimon Academy Award®, Golden Globe and BAFTA nominations for Best Adapted Screenplay, and it won The Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Award for Best Screenplay.

Other plays include Lower Ninth (Flea Theater, 2008; UK premiere, Donmar Warehouse, 2010), and Spirit Control (Manhattan Theatre Club, 2010).  Subsequent productions of his plays have been mounted across the U.S. and overseas.  Willimon was a recipient of the Lila Acheson Wallace Juilliard Playwriting Fellowship, named 2008 Playwright-in-Residence at the Donmar Warehouse, and he is a two-time winner of the Lincoln Center Le Comte du Nouy Award. Current theater commissions include works for the National Theatre of Great Britain, South Coast Rep, and the Flea Theater.

His most recent stage production, The Parisian Woman, premiered at South Coast Repertory last spring and starred Dana Delany, Steven Weber, Steven Culp, Linda Gehringer and Rebecca Mozo. The play was inspired by Henri Becque’s La Parisienne.
His new play Breathing Time  premiered in New York in the spring of 2014, produced by Fault Line Theatre Company. Willimon is the co-founder of Westward Productions, a film and television production company, along with co-founder Jordan Tappis.  Among Westward Production’s projects is the forthcoming Fear of Falling – a film adaption of Ibsen’s play Master Builder developed by Wallace Shawn and Andre Gregory, directed by Jonathan Demme.  Willimon is an executive producer on the film.  Other projects include a documentary about adventure traveler Karl Bushby’s quest to walk around the world on foot, and a documentary about Westerly Windina, a transgender Australian woman formerly known as legendary pro-surfer Peter Drouyn.

In addition to his career as a writer and producer, Willimon worked on a number of political campaigns, including Chuck Schumer’s 1998 senate race, Bill Bradley’s 2000 presidential race, Hillary Clinton’s 2000 senate race and Howard Dean’s 2004 presidential race.
Willimon graduated with a B.A. from Columbia University in 1999 and an M.F.A. in Playwriting from Columbia University’s School of the Arts in 2003. A St. Louis native, he now resides in Brooklyn, NY.

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Columbia University School of the Arts offers MFA degrees in Film, Theatre, Visual Arts, and Writing, an MA degree in Film Studies, a joint JD/MFA degree in Theatre Management & Producing, a PhD degree in Theatre History, Literature, and Theory, and an interdisciplinary program in Sound Arts.