John D Hancock
OBIE Award-winning theater director John Hancock used a grant from the American Film Institute to produce, direct and co-author his first film, the short "Sticky My Fingers. . . Fleet My Feet" (1970), for which he received an Oscar nomination. He directed his first feature "Let's Scare Jessica to Death" (1971), a creepy little tale of murder and deception, and followed with his most critically acclaimed work, "Bang the Drum Slowly" (1973), which advanced the careers of stars Robert De Niro and Michael Moriarty. He acquitted himself well with "Baby Blue Marine" (1976) and "California Dreaming" (1979) before venturing into series TV during the 1980s and 1990's, helming episodes of NBC's "Hill Street Blues" and CBS' "The Twilight Zone", among others.<p> Hancock returned to features as the auteur of "Weeds" (1987), producing, directing and co-writing (with wife Dorothy Tristan) this unique character study of cons-on-the-boards, based on Rick Cluchey's real-life experiences with the San Quentin Drama Group. He then directed "Prancer" (1989), his last feature to date, shooting the movie in his Indiana boyhood home of LaPorte. Though the film worked for kids as a charming fantasy about a child's undying devotion to an animal, Hancock was also able to provide adults with an effectively sentimental mirror of childhood innocence.<p>In 1998, he opened his own production company FILMACRES in LaPorte, Indiana. He has produced and directed the feature film "A Piece of Eden" in 1999 and directed the suspense thriller "Suspended Animation" in 2001-2002.