Playwright Bob Glaudini had a way with words that transformed everyday events into extraordinary stories. An accomplished film and TV actor, Glaudini was also one of the most influential people in theater, having written critically acclaimed plays such as "The Poison Tree" (2000), as well as collaborating with key players in the experimental world, and running famed theater companies across the country. But it was his smart and deeply engaging script for the feature film "Jack Goes Boating" (2010), a tender yet cynical drama about love, betrayal, and friendship that brought recognition for his unmatched talent, and launched Glaudini as one of independent cinema's most original and inspired storytellers.
Born in New Orleans, LA, Robert Glaudini moved to San Diego, CA with his family at age five. An active member of the surfing community when he was a teenager, Glaudini first became interested in theater after a random meeting with a group of local actors. Impressed by the group's passion for the arts, he joined in and became one of its members. After graduating from high school, Glaudini lived in New York City for a year before returning to San Diego, where he became involved in an avant-garde start-up theater group known as the Actor's Quarter Theatre. After a few years, Glaudini started his own theater group, Theater Five, which quickly established itself as one of the city's premiere companies. In the mid-1970s, Glaudini and his theater company moved to Manhattan, where he started to dabble with playwriting while simultaneously pursuing an acting career.
Glaudini made his film acting debut in the comedy "Lady Liberty" (1971), starring Sophia Loren as an incensed Italian immigrant who gains widespread sympathy after she sparks a diplomatic incident in New York City. He then starred in acclaimed experimental director Jon Jost's films "Angel City" (1977), where he played a seedy private investigator, and had the title role as a sordid drug dealer in "Chameleon" (1978). For most of his acting career, Glaudini took on a slew of offbeat parts, including an evil magician in "The Alchemist" (1984), a seedy promoter in "Grunt! The Wrestling Movie" (1985), and an oddball high school janitor in the teen horror flick "Cutting Class" (1989). He also had a memorable role as an FBI agent investigating the Ku Klux Klan's 1964 murders of three civil rights workers in the crime drama "Mississippi Burning" (1988), which starred Gene Hackman and Willem Dafoe. Glaudini also had a minor role as a consulate valet in the film adaptation of the 2000 novel "The Princess Diaries" (2001), starring Anne Hathaway as a teenager who suddenly discovers that she is heir to the throne of a fictional kingdom.
While he enjoyed a thriving career as a character actor for almost four decades, Glaudini's heart always belonged to the stage. In 2000, he wrote the play "The Poison Tree," a story set in modern-day La Jolla, CA about a hot-blooded woman, her husband who worked as a judge presiding over a high-profile murder trial, and a young male poet-professor. The critically lauded play, which explored the themes of infidelity and jealousy, was reportedly inspired by Glaudini's memories of the radical people he met while running his theater group in conservative La Jolla during the 1960s and early '70s. His follow-up play, "The Claiming Race" (2004), about a young girl, her half-brother and her manipulative "sugar daddy," was also loosely based on Glaudini's personal experiences with shattered hopes and dreams. He wrote a string of one-act dramas after "The Poison Tree," but it was not until he wrote the 2010 romantic comedy "Jack Goes Boating" that Glaudini made headlines in the independent film circuit.
Based on a 2007 play he wrote of the same name, the movie followed a romantically challenged limo driver named Jack (Phillip Seymour Hoffman) involved with a single woman (Amy Ryan) who, just like him, was toying with the idea of a long-term commitment. It also explored the relationship of Jack's friends, a long-term married couple (John Ortiz and Daphne Rubin-Vega) who was contemplating divorce. Collaborating with Hoffman to bring the play's adaptation to the big screen, Glaudini wrote a script that beautifully captured the emotions of two couples - one on the brink of breaking down; the other bent on taking their relationship to the next level. To draw viewers deeper into the characters' stories and internal struggles, Glaudini gave each their own unexpected idiosyncrasies, including Jack's predilection for all things Rastafarian and his utter dependency on his best friend to teach him how to do everything. For his deeply engaging script, Glaudini earned a nomination for Best First Screenplay from the 2011 Independent Spirit Awards.