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Paul Neesan

In 1993, Paul Neesan moved to Los Angeles from San Francisco, California to pursue a career in film. Later that year, Neesan was introduced to film producer John Davis, who offered Neesan the opportunity to develop film material from one of Davis's offices on the 20th Century Fox studio lot. In his first year, Neesan developed the screenplay Courage Under Fire. In 1996, Neesan co-produced that film, which starred Denzel Washington, Meg Ryan and Matt Damon. Directed by Edward Zwick, Courage Under Fire centered on a female helicopter pilot whose bravery in the Gulf War earned her a medal of honor. The pilot's actions are confirmed by an Army Lieutenant (Washington), whose personal journey also gets redeemed in this emotional war drama.

Neesan also developed and executive produced the Sylvester Stallone action thriller Daylight with Davis, which was produced for Universal Pictures in 1996.

In 1997, Neesan was named director of development of Universal Pictures and was promoted to vice president of production that same year. Neesan supervised many films as a studio executive during his tenure there, from 1997 to 1999.

In 1998, Neesan co-produced a film he developed in 1996, the Universal Pictures thriller Mercury Rising starring Bruce Willis. The film, directed by Harold Becker, told the story of an FBI agent (Willis) who was chosen to protect a 9-year-old autistic boy who accidentally cracked an important secret government code.

In 1999, Neesan left the studio to run development and production for Mostow/Lieberman productions. Neesan supervised development of the film slate for director Jonathan Mostow and producer Hal Lieberman, resulting in the 2000 production of WWII U-Boat drama U-571 for Universal Pictures. The film was directed by Jonathan Mostow and starred Matthew McConaughey.

In 2001, Neesan was introduced to Jordan Kerner, who was in the process of forming The Kerner Entertainment Company at Paramount Pictures. Neesan joined Kerner as executive vice president of the company and head of development and production. He currently guides development and production of over 20 projects for Kerner Entertainment.

A biochemistry graduate from the University of California at Davis, Neesan resides in Los Angeles with his wife Kelly and 3-year-old son Zachary.

Note: This profile was written in or before 2007.

Paul Neesan Facts


Selected Filmography

Mercury Rising
Courage Under Fire
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