John Waters

Director, Screenwriter, Author
Transgressive filmmaker John Waters remained on the cinematic fringe for more than a decade before his outrageous and intentionally offensive movies gradually met with a sort of begrudging critical and commercial ... Read more »
Born: 04/22/1946 in Baltimore, Maryland, USA

Filmography

Actor (71)

Real Time with Bill Maher 2005 - 2006, 2009, 2011 - 2012, 2014 - 2015 (Tv Show)

Interviewee

Tab Hunter Confidential 2015 (Movie)

(Himself)

I Am Divine 2013 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

Return to Nim's Island 2013 (Movie)

(Actor)

Excision 2012 (Movie)

(Actor)

Fish Hooks 2012 (Tv Show)

Voice

Mansome 2012 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

The 2012 Independent Spirit Awards 2011 - 2012 (TV Show)

Presenter

Blank City 2011 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

Celebrity Ghost Stories 1992 - 1993, 2005 - 2006, 2009 - 2011 (Tv Show)

Actor

Homicide: Life on the Street 1992 - 1995, 2005 - 2006, 2009 - 2011 (Tv Show)

Actor

The Graham Norton Show 2005 - 2006, 2010 - 2011 (Tv Show)

Actor

It Came From Kuchar 2010 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

Mangus! 2010 (Movie)

(Actor)

There's a Rhino in My House! 2009 - 2010 (TV Show)

Narrator

These Amazing Shadows 2010 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

William Burroughs: A Man Within 2010 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

Guest of Cindy Sherman 2009 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

Obscene 2008 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

Sex: The Revolution! 2007 - 2008 (TV Show)

Actor

The 62nd Annual Tony Awards 2007 - 2008 (TV Show)

Actor

'Til Death Do Us Part 2006 - 2007 (TV Show)

Host

Ace of Cakes 2007 (Tv Show)

Actor

Hairspray 2007 (Movie)

Flasher (Actor)

Plagues & Pleasures on the Salton Sea 2007 (Movie)

(Narrator)

Spine Tingler! The William Castle Story 2007 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

SqueezeBox! 2007 (Movie)

(Actor)

The 2007 Film Independent's Spirit Awards 2006 - 2007 (TV Show)

Actor

I Love the Holidays 2005 - 2006 (TV Show)

Actor

Jackass: Number Two 2006 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

This Film is Not Yet Rated 2006 (Movie)

Interviewee (Actor)

This Filthy World 2006 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

20th Independent Spirit Awards 2004 - 2005 (TV Show)

Actor

Inside Deep Throat 2005 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

That Man: Peter Berlin 2005 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

2004 IFP/Independent Spirit Awards 2003 - 2004 (TV Show)

Host

Seed of Chucky 2004 (Movie)

Pete Peters (Actor)

Conversations in World Cinema 1999 - 2002 (TV Show)

Actor

The Cockettes 2002 (Movie)

(Actor)

Blood Feast 2: All U Can Eat 2001 (Movie)

(Actor)

From The Waist Down: Men, Women & Music 2000 - 2001 (TV Show)

Actor

Memories of Oz 2000 - 2001 (TV Show)

Actor

15th Annual IFP/West Independent Spirit Awards 1999 - 2000 (TV Show)

Presenter

Canned Ham: Cecil B. Demented 1999 - 2000 (TV Show)

Actor

Divine Trash 2000 (Movie)

(Actor)

Sonny Bono: The E! True Hollywood Story 1999 - 2000 (TV Show)

Actor

14th Independent Spirit Awards 1998 - 1999 (TV Show)

Performer

Divine: The E! True Hollywood Story 1998 - 1999 (TV Show)

Actor

Sweet and Lowdown 1999 (Movie)

Mr Haynes (Actor)

Forever Hollywood 1998 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

Frasier 1998 (Tv Show)

Voice

Sonny Bono: Pop Songs & Politics 1997 - 1998 (TV Show)

Actor

Anthem 1997 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

The Simpsons 1997 (Tv Show)

Voice

Ballyhoo: The Hollywood Sideshow! 1995 - 1996 (TV Show)

Actor

American Cinema 1994 - 1995 (TV Show)

Actor

Homer and Eddie 1989 (Movie)

1st Robber (Actor)

Hairspray 1988 (Movie)

Dr Fredrickson (Actor)

Something Wild 1986 (Movie)

Used Car Guy (Actor)

Indie Sex: Taboos (TV Show)

Actor

Thinking XXX (TV Show)

Actor
Director (20)

A Dirty Shame 2004 (Movie)

(Director)

Cecil B. Demented 2000 (Movie)

(Director)

Pecker 1998 (Movie)

(Director)

Serial Mom 1994 (Movie)

(Director)

Cry Baby 1990 (Movie)

(Director)

Hairspray 1988 (Movie)

(Director)

Polyester 1981 (Movie)

(Director)

Desperate Living 1977 (Movie)

(Director)

Female Trouble 1975 (Movie)

(Director)

Pink Flamingos 1974 (Movie)

(Director)

Mondo Trasho 1970 (Movie)

(Director)

Multiple Maniacs 1970 (Movie)

(Director)

The Diane Linkletter Story 1969 (Movie)

(Director)

Hag in a Black Leather Jacket 1963 (Movie)

(Director)

Arizona Bound (Movie)

(Director)

Beau Sabreur (Movie)

(Director)

Fruitcake (Movie)

(Director)

Man of the Forest (Movie)

(Director)

Overland Telegraph (Movie)

(Director)

Sioux Blood (Movie)

(Director)
Writer (14)

Hairspray 2007 (Movie)

(from screenplay "Hairspray") (Source Material)

This Filthy World 2006 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

A Dirty Shame 2004 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Cecil B. Demented 2000 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Pecker 1998 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Serial Mom 1994 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Cry Baby 1990 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Hairspray 1988 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Polyester 1981 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Desperate Living 1977 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Female Trouble 1975 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Pink Flamingos 1974 (Movie)

writer/director(Narration 1977) (Writer)

Pink Flamingos 1974 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Mondo Trasho 1970 (Movie)

(Screenplay)
Producer (6)

Hairspray 1988 (Movie)

(Co-Producer)

Polyester 1981 (Movie)

(Producer)

Desperate Living 1977 (Movie)

(Producer)

Female Trouble 1975 (Movie)

(Producer)

Pink Flamingos 1974 (Movie)

(Producer)

Mondo Trasho 1970 (Movie)

(Producer)
Camera, Film, & Tape (4)

Desperate Living 1977 (Movie)

cinematography (Cinematographer)

Female Trouble 1975 (Movie)

cinematography (Cinematographer)

Pink Flamingos 1974 (Movie)

cinematography (Cinematographer)

Mondo Trasho 1970 (Movie)

(Photography)
Music (4)

Pecker 1998 (Movie)

songs("Straight Boys" "Don't Drop the Soap (For Anyone Else But Me)") (Song)

Serial Mom 1994 (Movie)

("Gas Chamber") (Song)

Cry Baby 1990 (Movie)

lyric adaptations (Music)

Female Trouble 1975 (Movie)

("Female Trouble") (Song)
Editor (2)

Pink Flamingos 1974 (Movie)

(Editor)

Mondo Trasho 1970 (Movie)

(Editor)

Biography

Transgressive filmmaker John Waters remained on the cinematic fringe for more than a decade before his outrageous and intentionally offensive movies gradually met with a sort of begrudging critical and commercial acceptance. Operating from his home base of Baltimore, the pencil-mustached Waters arrived on the scene with his barely-seen short "Hag in a Black Leather Jacket" (1964), before ultimately moving on to such monuments of bad taste as "Mondo Trasho" (1969) and the notorious "Pink Flamingos" (1972). His muse and star in these early efforts was the portly female impersonator Divine, with whom he would make a total of six feature films. Other frequent collaborators like Mink Stole and Mary Vivian Pearce - known collectively as the Dreamlanders - became staples of Waters' exorcises in outré behavior. A spoof of the "women's films" of the 1950s, "Polyester" (1981) was the first of Waters' films to receive wider distribution and a long-denied R rating. Gradually, the filmmaker achieved a semblance of respectability with the publication of his first book, 1981's Shock Value, and later made a name for himself as an admired and innovative photographic artist. He moved further into the mainstream with movies like "Hairspray" (1988), "Cry Baby" (1990) and "Serial Mom" (1994), starring the likes of Johnny Depp and Kathleen Turner. After Waters' 1988 film had been adapted into a successful stage play, the smash hit musical version of "Hairspray" (2007) seemed to complete his transformation from eccentric Hollywood outsider to pop culture icon.

Relationships

Patricia Waters Actor

Mother

Steve Waters Actor

Brother

Derek Waters Actor

Nephew

EDUCATION

Calvert Hall College High School

Baltimore , Maryland

New York University

New York , New York
Waters and some friends were expelled after being caught smoking marijuana on the school grounds

Milestones

2007

Appeared in "This Filthy World," a straight documentary of his long-running one-man show

2007

Played the narrator/groom reaper in the 13-part TV true-crime drama series "Til Death Do Us Part" (Court TV)

2004

Voiced the Sleazy Reporter in "Seed of Chucky"

2004

Directed the the NC-17-rated "A Dirty Shame" starring Tracey Ullman, Johnny Knoxville and Selma Blair

2000

Helmed "Cecil B. DeMented" starring Melanie Griffith and Stephen Dorff; loosely based on the 1974 kidnapping of Patty Hearst

1999

Featured in Woody Allen's "Sweet and Lowdown"

1998

Wrote and directed "Pecker," a semi-autobiographical portrait of a teenaged photographer

1997

Provided a character voice on the animated FOX series "The Simpsons"

1997

"Pink Flamingos" was re-released in a 25th Anniversary edition

1996

Participated on-camera in "Ballyhoo! The Hollywood Sideshow" (American Movie Classics)

1994

First Hollywood A-list film (major stars; $13 million budget), "Serial Mom"

1991

Honored with a 7-day career retrospective, "Midnight Madness: The Films of John Waters" at the Angelika Theater in NYC

1988

Directed his most profitable feature (to date) "Hairspray"; first film with Ricki Lake; last film with Divine

1986

Made cameo appearance as car salesman in Jonathan Demme's "Something Wild"

1986

Had role in TV-movie "Passion Flower" (CBS)

1981

First studio-backed feature, "Polyester" starring Divine and Mink Stole; employed "Odorama" a gimmick involving the distribution of scratch-and-sniff cards to be used with visual cues in the film

1975

"Pink Flamingos" was accepted into the permanent collection of the Musum of Modern Art

1972

Released the notorious cult film, "Pink Flamingos" starring Divine and Mink Stole; film was closed down in Hicksville, NY and Waters fined $5,000 for obscenity; film was also banned in Australia, Canada and Norway

1970

First feature starring Divine, "Multiple Maniacs"

1969

Feature film debut as writer/director, "Mondo Trasho"

1964

Directed first 8mm short, "Hag in a Black Leather Jacket"

Released three of his 8mm shorts under the umbrella title, "Roman Candles"; first collaboration with Divine and Mink Stole

Raised in a suburb of Baltimore, Maryland

Began working as a puppeteer at age 12, performing at children's birthday parties

Attended court trials of the Manson gang, Patty Hearst, and serial killer Richard Ramirez

Bonus Trivia

.

Waters reported to USA Today (April 12, 1994) that he was expelled from the New York University Film School for smoking pot. He also cheerfully admits to years of LSD use.

.

Feb. 7, 1985 was declared "John Waters Day" in Baltimore, Maryland.

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