Ron Bass

Screenwriter, Producer, Novelist
Despite charges of cheap emotional manipulation by critics, at his peak, writer-producer Ronald Bass was indisputably one of the most prolific, influential and highest-paid screenwriters in Hollywood history. A former ... Read more »
Born: 03/25/1942 in Los Angeles, California, USA

Filmography

Writer (34)

Before We Go 2015 (Movie)

(Story By)

Before We Go 2015 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Eleven Percent 2014 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Space Warriors 2014 (Movie)

(Story By)

Space Warriors 2014 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Snow Flower and the Secret Fan 2011 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

We Are Family 2010 (Movie)

(from original screenplay: "Stepmom") (Source Material)

Amelia 2009 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

The Lazarus Child 2006 (Movie)

(Adaptation ($2 million to write and co-produce)) (Screenplay)

Mozart and the Whale 2004 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Passion of Mind 2000 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Border Line 1998 - 1999 (TV Show)

Screenplay

Entrapment 1999 (Movie)

(From Story)

Entrapment 1999 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Snow Falling on Cedars 1999 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

How Stella Got Her Groove Back 1998 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Stepmom 1998 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

What Dreams May Come 1998 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

My Best Friend's Wedding 1997 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Dangerous Minds 1995 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Reunion 1994 - 1995 (TV Show)

Screenplay

The Bridges of Madison County 1995 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Waiting to Exhale 1995 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

The Enemy Within 1994 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

When A Man Loves A Woman 1994 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

The Joy Luck Club 1993 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Sleeping With the Enemy 1991 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Rain Man 1988 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Black Widow 1987 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Gardens of Stone 1987 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Code Name: Emerald 1985 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Code Name: Emerald 1985 (Movie)

("The Emerald Illusion") (Source Material (from novel))

Target 1985 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Swing Vote (TV Show)

Writer
Producer (21)

Before We Go 2015 (Movie)

(Executive Producer)

Spare Parts 2015 (Movie)

(Co-Producer)

Snow Flower and the Secret Fan 2011 (Movie)

(Executive Producer)

Soul Surfer 2011 (Movie)

(Co-Producer)

Amelia 2009 (Movie)

(Executive Producer)

The Lazarus Child 2006 (Movie)

($2 million to write and co-produce) (Co-Producer)

Mozart and the Whale 2004 (Movie)

(Producer)

Passion of Mind 2000 (Movie)

(Producer)

Entrapment 1999 (Movie)

(Executive Producer)

Snow Falling on Cedars 1999 (Movie)

(Producer)

How Stella Got Her Groove Back 1998 (Movie)

(Executive Producer)

Stepmom 1998 (Movie)

(Executive Producer)

What Dreams May Come 1998 (Movie)

(Executive Producer)

Dangerous Minds 1996 - 1997 (TV Show)

Executive Producer

Moloney 1996 - 1997 (TV Show)

Executive Producer

My Best Friend's Wedding 1997 (Movie)

(Producer)

The Conversation 1995 - 1996 (TV Show)

Executive Producer

Waiting to Exhale 1995 (Movie)

(Executive Producer)

When A Man Loves A Woman 1994 (Movie)

(Executive Producer)

The Joy Luck Club 1993 (Movie)

(Producer)

Invisible Child (TV Show)

Executive Producer
Actor (1)

When A Man Loves A Woman 1994 (Movie)

1st AA Man (Actor)

Biography

Despite charges of cheap emotional manipulation by critics, at his peak, writer-producer Ronald Bass was indisputably one of the most prolific, influential and highest-paid screenwriters in Hollywood history. A former entertainment attorney, Bass began his career as a screenplay writer after landing a deal to pen "Code Name: Emerald" (1985), an adaptation of an earlier novel he had written. This led to more work, including the script for Francis Ford Coppola's "Gardens of Stone" (1987). Bass' career turning point came with his screenplay for the Tom Cruise/Dustin Hoffman box office smash "Rain Man" (1988), for which he won an Oscar. Projects such as "The Joy Luck Club" (1993) and "Waiting to Exhale" (1995) not only established Bass as one of film's leading writers of strong female characters, but also marked his entry into the role of producer, allowing for more creative control and a larger share of the profits. After the success of the Julia Roberts films "My Best Friend's Wedding" (1997) and "Stepmom" (1998), Bass' track record faltered somewhat, however, he remained very much in demand as an un-credited "script doctor" on dozens of films, including "Memoirs of a Geisha" (2005) and "Soul Surfer" (2011). Contrary to the old axiom that unappreciated writers are at the bottom of the Hollywood ladder, trampled by the studio system, Bass embraced the established power structure and excelled to such a degree that it placed him at the very pinnacle in terms of longevity, financial remuneration and power.

Relationships

Christine Bass

Wife

Jenna Bass

Daughter
Mother, Christine Bass

Sasha Bass

Daughter
Mother, Christine Bass

Diane Bass

Sister
Has advised brother on family dynamics and autism ("Rain Man") youngest sibling

Gail Weinstein

Wife
Previously married divorced in 1976

EDUCATION

Yale University

New Haven , Connecticut
Attended on the Woodrow Wilson Fellowship

Harvard Law School

Cambridge , Massachusetts 1967

Stanford University

Stanford , California

Milestones

2009

Wrote and executive produced the film "Amelia," directed by Mira Nair and starring Hilary Swank in the title role

2005

Wrote and produced "Mozart and the Whale," starring Josh Hartnett and Radha Mitchell

2004

Scripted the drama film, "The Lazarus Child"

2000

Scripted and produced "Passion of Mind," starring Demi Moore

1999

Executive produced and scripted, "Entrapment," starring Catherine Zeta-Jones and Sean Connery

1999

Co-scripted (with Jane Rusconi) the ABC-TV movie, "Swing Vote"

1999

Produced and wrote the original screenplay adaptation of "Snow Falling on Cedars"; reportedly director Scott Hicks and original novelist David Guterson rewrote entire script

1998

Re-teamed with McMillan for "How Stella Got Her Groove Back"

1997

Scripted the comedy "My Best Friend's Wedding", starring Julia Roberts

1997

Signed three-year exclusive deal with Sony Pictures Entertainment

1996

Served as creator and co-executive producer (with Stephen Cronish) of the CBS drama series "Moloney"

1996

Served as co-executive producer and creator of the ABC series adaptation of "Dangerous Minds"

1995

First association with novelist-screenwriter Terry McMillan, "Waiting to Exhale"; executive produced and co-wrote script with McMillan

1995

TV producing debut, "The Conversation" (NBC); also wrote the pilot based on the 1974 feature (aired only on Mountain Stations)

1995

Received sole screenwriting credit on "Dangerous Minds," even though Elaine May was brought on by star Michelle Pfeiffer to essentially rewrite it

1994

Feature debut as executive producer, "When A Man Loves a Woman"; also co-scripted with Al Franken

1994

TV screenwriting debut, "The Enemy Within," an HBO remake of the 1964 feature "Seven Days in May"

1993

Feature debut as a producer, "The Joy Luck Club"; also co-wrote script with Amy Tan

1991

First picture starring Julia Roberts, "Sleeping with the Enemy"

1988

Breakthrough screenplay, "Rain Man"; co-written with Barry Morrow

1987

Wrote the screenplays for "Gardens of Stone" and "Black Widow"

1985

Feature debut as a screenwriter, "Code Name: Emerald"; adapted from his third novel, The Emerald Illusion

1984

Quit practicing law when FOX signed him to write two scripts at $125,000 each; neither was ever produced

1978

First novel published, "The Perfect Thief"

1974

Returned to the novel he wrote as a teen and began to rewrite the novel from memory

Formed production company, Predawn Production

Formed Ron Bass Productions

Completed first novel, Voleur by age 17; Bass responded to his English teacher's critique by burning his manuscript

Practiced entertainment law for 17 years

Bonus Trivia

.

On whether some of his assistants have contributed more than just research and ideas to his scripts: "I may circulate a draft to my team and ask for comments. When I block out the outline for a new script, I solicit suggestions. I certainly need help on research. Since I write on a pad in longhand, I require the help of someone who can read my writing and type my scripts. But no one writes a word except me." - Bass to GQ magazine, October 1998

.

About why he started producing: "You aren't an island, sending a script off into the sunset and then grumbling when everybody screws it up. I stopped being at war with the process and became part of the process." - Bass quoted in Sight and Sound magazine, March 1999

.

"The reason I write more for women than men is that they are generally more process-oriented. They want to be in touch with their inner life, even if it is counter-productive to their goals. Men are more result-oriented. And they really don't want to know what's going on in their inner life if it is counter-productive. A man doesn't want to feel scared, guilty or acknowledge that he is insecure or ashamed - and that's such a huge part of living successfully." - Bass to the Daily Variety, March 22, 1999

.

"I have a good eye for how to tell the same story in a different medium. In print, it's about what happens within people. In film, it's what happens between people." - Bass quoted in Moviemaker magazine, May 1999

.

"I always feel that someday they're going to find out that I'm just a little kid in an adult suit, and they're going to put me in my room." - Bass in The New Yorker, Jan. 24, 2000

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