DUSTIN CURTIS MURPHY

WRITER / DIRECTOR

 
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I am an award-winning writer/director with over two decades of experience in the film industry. Originally from Los Angeles, I now reside in London.

My background includes several microbudget short films which focus on sociopolitical issues. My current documentary, BLAKE BYERS BROUGHT A CIGARETTE TO A GUN FIGHT is wrapping post-production and focuses on police brutality in the US. Currently on the festival circuit, NORA, premiered at the British Film Institute as the centrepiece of a TEDTalk event and has won 18 awards to date including 2 for Best Director. My previous Best Short Drama winner, AVERY ROAD, combines the issues of women’s rights and gun violence to focus on the polarization of American values and it’s impact on society. My previous film festival hit, WITHOUT REGRET is now available on Amazon Prime and depicts a multi-generational discussion around the inner conflict between the past and present.

I have written and sold several feature screenplays, and successfully crowdsourced four seasons of the web-series HAPPY HOUR SKETCH COMEDY. I am also the key organizer for Kino Short Film - a London based indie filmmakers collective of 1300 strong. Kino offers open-mic screenings, workshops & classes, networking opportunities, short film production support and sponsors The People’s Film Festival.

 
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Creative Philosophy

Not every project has the luxury of a big budget, but that doesn’t have to get in the way of getting your project made. I am a self-sustaining, award-winning filmmaker that can lead a large crew or adapt to tight limitations. Writing, directing, producing, cinematography, and editing are all in my skillset. I’ve helmed production with a cast and crew of 50+, and also made successful intimate film as the only creative behind camera. I approach all my projects with a do-what-it-takes philosophy, ensuring that projects aren’t abandoned when the production faces challenges.

As an artist and filmmaker, I've always been drawn to two polar opposite styles: comedy & tragedy. With my films I want to leave you crying; either with laughter or with heartfelt empathy for both my fictional and non-fictional subjects. I want my films to affect you, stick with you, and relate to your own human experience.

 
 

All About the Performance

When creating narrative fiction, I am an actor's director. It's less about the camera you use, and more about what you're pointing your camera at. I love hosting a collborative experience on-set where talented actors are free to deliver performances they feel confident about and audiences consider outstanding. Here are some highlights.

Performance highlights from NORA, WITHOUT REGRET, and AVERY ROAD.

 

Biography

As an award winning child actor, I was immersed in the world of stage production. Quickly I became mesmerized by what goes on behind the scenes and enrolled in film classes. By the time I graduated high school, I had several film festival awards under my belt including Best Under 18 Film at Shriekfest Hollywood.

I took a year off from studying to try my hand at screenwriting. In a matter of months I had optioned my first screenplay to Castleberg Productions (Kicking and Screaming, Mr. Jealousy), volunteered at the Breckenridge International Film Festival and got many hands-on hours working as a PA for the Star Entertainment Group.

After learning hands-on about the film business, and more importantly learning the craft of storytelling, it was time to helm some productions of my own. My first major production was to be adapting my award winning stage play for the screen; creating 4 successful seasons of Happy Hour Sketch Comedy. In the later two seasons of this web series, I found myself less and less making traditional style sketches, as my artistic expression morphed into a style that more resembled short film. Relying heavily on my favorite comedy influences, these “web shorts” would find humor in topics that weren’t typical for traditional sketch comedy. Highlights include topics ranging from modern politics, poking fun at the arts and entertainment industry, to the hazards of modern romance.

While continually pushing my own artistic vision forward with writing and directing, I also acted in the independent feature Hysperia, joined several independent productions taking on the role of Director of Photography, and helped to produce the first season of High the web series. 

In 2017, I moved to London. My first film directed in the UK was Nora which premiered at part of TEDxNHS at the British Film Institute in August 2018. It is currently on the festival circuit having won 18 awards at 12 festivals.

I have written 10 feature screenplays, some of which have been produced, some have been optioned awaiting production, while others are available to read upon request.

Please check out my current projects to see what I’m up to.

 
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