PAUL DANO’s directorial debut, Wildlife, premiered at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival and opened the 2018 Cannes Film Festival’s Critics’ Week to rave reviews. He also produced the film and wrote the screenplay (with Zoe Kazan), adapted from Richard Ford’s American classic. Wildlife stars Carey Mulligan and Jake Gyllenhaal, and centers on the story of a teenage boy who witnesses the decay of his parents’ marriage after their move to Montana.
Dano will star in the upcoming Broadway production of Sam Shepard’s True West, directed by James Macdonald, alongside Ethan Hawke. He starred in the critically acclaimed Joon-ho Bong film Okja.
In 2015, Dano won the Gotham Independent Film Award for Best Actor and received Golden Globe and Independent Spirit Award nominations for his critically acclaimed portrayal of the Beach Boys’ Brian Wilson in the film Love & Mercy. He also starred in Youth, written and directed by Paolo Sorrentino (The Great Beauty), which was nominated for the Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival.
Dano appeared in Steve McQueen’s critically acclaimed and Academy Award, BAFTA and Golden Globe winning 12 Years a Slave; starred in Prisoners, directed by Denis Villeneuve; starred in Looper, directed by Rian Johnson; starred in and executive produced Ruby Sparks, directed by Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris and written by Zoe Kazan; starred in Being Flynn, directed by Paul Weitz; starred in Meek’s Cutoff, directed by Kelly Reichardt; and voiced Alexander in Spike Jonze’s critically acclaimed and Golden Globe nominated Where the Wild Things Are.
In 2007, Dano was nominated for a Best Supporting Actor BAFTA Award for his portrayal of identical twin brothers in Paul Thomas Anderson’s Academy Award nominated There Will Be Blood. He won a Critics’ Choice Award for Best Young Actor for his portrayal of Dwayne in the Academy Award nominated Little Miss Sunshine, directed by Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris.
Dano starred in the miniseries War & Peace, directed by Tom Harper, and starred in The Ballad of Jack & Rose, directed by Rebecca Miller. Other film credits include Swiss Army Man, For Ellen, Knight and Day, The Extra Man, The Good Heart, Gigantic, Cowboys & Aliens, Taking Woodstock, The Girl Next Door, Fast Food Nation, The King and Taking Lives. In 2007, Dano starred in Ethan Hawke’s off-Broadway directorial debut, Things We Want.
Dano’s first major film appearance was at 17 in the crime drama L.I.E., for which he won the Independent Spirit Award for Best Debut Performance and a Directors’ Week Award for Best Actor.