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BIOGRAPHY

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MARK OXMAN

My interest as a storyteller is in exploring the human condition.  I am fascinated with the flaws in individuals and my characters exhibit various personality disorders -- I have written about people with narcissistic personality disorder, borderline personality disorder, sociopathic tendencies, and obsessive-compulsiveness.  I also believe people are multifaceted so I like skewing the line between hero and villain with each and every role I write.  My hope is, as a filmmaker, audience members will be able to make more sense of their own flaws or be more sympathetic towards the people around them that they tend to judge.  I am an egalitarian and my films often depict the detriments that come with being judgmental towards others and the negativity that weighs down those with bullying tendencies.

 

As a director, I believe the key to every film is it should be rooted in truth, regardless of its genre.  I think an audience will only be engaged when they see semblance of everyday life in the behaviors exhibited by the characters; that relatability is essential, even if it is set in a fantastical universe or a future time period.  I also believe every good film erases the fingerprints of a film shoot by emulating reality; if the viewer has any notion of what they are watching being a fabrication, they will watch passively and no longer feel they are participating in the experience.


I have trained as an actor since I was a child so I consider myself an actor’s director, knowing what it feels like from the inside out.  I also believe in leading with love and that people work best when they feel supported.  Likewise I do not ascribe to the notion of a hierarchy on set — I consider everyone a part of the collective whole, working collaboratively to achieve one common goal.

Being prepared is my biggest asset in achieving my vision when I direct my own work.  I have storyboarded every frame for every project I have worked on.  Recently I completed my goal of boarding out the 120 pages of "Virtual Strangers."  These boards have proven beneficial in getting the crew to see my vision, helps pre-production and production meetings go smoother, minimizes the coverage we feel we need on set, and allows me to make quick adjustments when necessary since I know the story backwards and forwards by the time we begin production.  Additionally, by spending time with each scene before we shoot, I have already encountered unforeseen mishaps and continuity errors; thus having found a solution for each problem in advance, in a preliminary, no-cost setting.

I am a cinephile and watch over 200 movies every year.  I have seen every film on the IMDb's Top 250, AFI's Top 100, every Best Picture winner.  I have seen every film nominated for an Academy Award, in every category, since 2002 (sans some of the short films).  I have seen every film by Alfred Hitchcock, Paul Thomas Anderson, Stanley Kubrick, David Lynch, David Fincher, Christopher Nolan, Martin Scorsese, Steven Spielberg, Robert Zemeckis, Jason Reitman, David O. Russell, Darren Aronofsky, Michael Haneke, Guillermo del Toro, Alfonso Cuarón, Alejandro G. Iñárritu, Lars von Trier, Terrence Malick, Quentin Tarantino, the Coen brothers, Gaspar Noé, Wes Anderson, Noah Baumbach, Ang Lee, Tim Burton, Spike Jonze, Sofia Coppola, Asghar Farhadi.  I keep a record of every film I have seen and have watched over 3500 movies, the majority in the last decade.  Viewing all these films has given me a sixth sense for how to approach scene work as a writer and director. 

IN DEVELOPMENT

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VIRTUAL STRANGERS
Writer/Director

Members of an online fan club prepare to meet face-to-face when the actors from their favorite television show schedule a rare public appearance. But they find themselves pitted against each other when a search for the number one fan is announced, with the crowning to take place at the event.

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LIBBY
Writer

Biography of actress Libby Holman whose fame as a Broadway star in the Jazz Age was overshadowed when she was suspected of murdering her multimillionaire 20-year-old husband.

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THE DARWIN THEORY
Writer

Young adults, with different political beliefs, bond together to combat an American law where citizens can be executed if they fail a nightmarish IQ test.

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GLOZELL IS CANCELLED
Writer/Director

Short Film: YouTuber GloZell Green tries desperately to reverse Internet backlash when she finds herself the target of cancel culture.

UPCOMING
SCREENPLAYS

THE DARWIN THEORY

Feature film version of project I iniitally started as a TV series for Howie Mandel's Alevy Productions.

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