Brian Benson

Brian Benson
Lecturer
Phone: 
(415) 420-3009
Building: Fine Arts

Biography

Brian Benson started his career as an assistant director and line producer working on music videos (Metallica, Sixpence None the Richer) and independent films (GROOVE, BARTLEBY, WILDFLOWERS). In 2000 he produced his first feature film, HAIKU TUNNEL, which was selected for the 2001 Sundance Film Festival and was picked up for distribution by Sony Pictures Classics. Due to his success with HAIKU TUNNEL and his promise as a producer, Brian received the prestigious Sundance Mark Silverman Producer's Fellowship in 2002, where he was mentored by luminaries of the independent film industry such as Ted Hope, Ron Yerxa and Scott Macaulay. In 2002, Brian attended the Sundance producer's lab attached to DOPAMINE, Mark Decena’s debut feature, which premiered in competition at the 2003 Sundance Film Festival and was awarded the Alfred P. Sloan Feature Film Prize. DOPAMINE was released theatrically in October of that year. His third film, RED DIAPER BABY starring Josh Kornbluth, was one of the few films financed by the Sundance Channel and was released in 2004. In early 2006, he spent 6 months in Dallas programming the country’s first large-scale permanent outdoor digital arts film festival. Brian’s fourth feature FULL GROWN MEN – a comedy starring Alan Cumming, Deborah Harry and Amy Sedaris – premiered at the 2007 Tribeca Film Festival before being released nationally in theaters, on cable and on DVD. By the end of 2009, Brian produced two more films: ALL ABOUT EVIL, a dark comedy born in the world of horror, and HOWL, a film about Allen Ginsberg’s poem and the subsequent obscenity trial that followed its publication. Directed by the Academy Award winning team Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman, executive produced by Gus Van Sant and starring James Franco, John Hamm and Mary-Louise Parker, HOWL opened the 2010 Sundance Film Festival. ALL ABOUT EVIL, which stars Natasha Lyonne, Casandra Peterson, Thomas Dekker and Mink Stole, also premiered in 2010. Currently, Brian is writing a musical feature film which he will direct and is in development on two other feature films as producer.

Education:

  • Coursework in film at UCLA and SFSU