Alex Kurtzman (born September 7, 1973) is an American film and television writer, producer, and director. He is best known for executive producing the Star Trek franchise since 2009, co-writing the scripts to Transformers, Star Trek, Star Trek Into Darkness, and The Amazing Spider-Man 2 with his writing and producing partner Roberto Orci, and directing and co-writing The Mummy.
Kurtzman in May 2017
|Other names||Alexander Kurtzman, Alexander Hilary Kurtzman|
|Occupation||Writer, producer, director|
Samantha Counter (m. 2002)
Kurtzman was born and raised to a secular Jewish family in Los Angeles, California, where he met his high school friend and longtime collaborator Roberto Orci. He attended Wesleyan University.
Kurtzman first teamed with Orci on television on the syndicated series Hercules: The Legendary Journeys, for the television unit of Pacific Renaissance Pictures, then operating out of Universal International. After they produced several storylines to cope with the absence of lead actor Kevin Sorbo following a stroke that Sorbo had suffered during the fourth season, Kurtzman and Orci, both aged 24, were placed in charge of the show. They moved into films after they were asked to rewrite Michael Bay's The Island. The film earned $162 million at the worldwide box office, on a budget of $126 million, which was enough of a success that they were brought to write Bay's Transformers, which earned $710 million. Though The Island, Transformers and Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen were not particularly well received by critics, the three films earned a combined $1.7 billion. They co-created the Fox TV series Fringe in 2008 along with J. J. Abrams. After the pilot, Kurtzman served as consulting producer on the show for the remainder of its run. They then co-wrote the 2009 film Star Trek.
In 2011, Forbes magazine described Orci and Kurtzman as "Hollywood's Secret Weapons" as, over the course of the previous six years, their films had grossed a combined total of over $3 billion at the box office. The partnership also wrote People Like Us, originally known as Welcome to People, which was Kurtzman's directorial debut.
He frequently collaborates with a tightly knit group of primarily Jewish film professionals which include J.J. Abrams, Damon Lindelof, Adam Horowitz, Roberto Orci, Edward Kitsis, Andre Nemec, Josh Appelbaum, Jeff Pinkner, and Bryan Burk. In April 2014, both Orci and Kurtzman confirmed to Variety that they would no longer work together on film projects; they added that they would still work together—but only on television projects.
|2005||The Island||No||Yes||No||Co-wrote with Roberto Orci and Caspian Tredwell-Owen|
|The Legend of Zorro||No||Yes||No||Co-wrote with Roberto Orci, Ted Elliott and Terry Rossio|
|2006||Mission: Impossible III||No||Yes||No||Co-wrote with J. J. Abrams and Roberto Orci|
|2007||Transformers||No||Yes||No||Co-wrote with Roberto Orci and John Rogers|
|2009||Watchmen||No||Yes||No||uncredited script polish|
|Star Trek||No||Yes||executive||Co-wrote with Roberto Orci|
|Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen||No||Yes||No||Co-wrote with Ehren Kruger and Roberto Orci|
|2011||Cowboys & Aliens||No||Yes||Yes||Co-wrote with Roberto Orci, Damon Lindelof, Steve Oedekerk, Mark Fergus and Hawk Ostby|
|2012||People Like Us||Yes||Yes||executive||Directorial debut; co-wrote with Roberto Orci and Jody Lambert|
|2013||Star Trek Into Darkness||No||Yes||Yes||Co-wrote with Roberto Orci and Damon Lindelof|
|Now You See Me||No||No||Yes|
|2014||The Amazing Spider-Man 2||No||Yes||executive||Co-wrote with Roberto Orci, Jeff Pinkner, and James Vanderbilt|
|2016||The Brothers Grimsby||No||No||No||Special thanks|
|Now You See Me 2||No||No||Yes|
|2017||The Mummy||Yes||Yes||Yes||Wrote the story; co-wrote with Jon Spaihts, Jenny Lumet, David Koepp, Christopher McQuarrie and Dylan Kussman|
|1997–1999||Hercules: The Legendary Journeys||Co-executive producer, writer|
|1999–2000||Xena: Warrior Princess|
|2000||Jack of All Trades||Executive producer, writer|
|2001–2003||Alias||Supervising producer, co-executive producer, executive producer, writer|
|2004||The Secret Service||Co-creator, executive producer, co-writer||Pilot|
|2008–2013||Fringe||Co-creator, executive producer, consulting producer, writer|
|2010–2013||Transformers Prime||Executive producer|
|2010–present||Hawaii Five-0||Co-developer, executive producer, writer|
|2011||Exit Strategy||Co-creator, executive producer, co-writer||Pilot|
|Locke & Key||Co-developer, executive producer, co-writer|
|2013–2017||Sleepy Hollow||Co-creator, co-writer, executive producer|
|2017–present||Star Trek: Discovery||Executive producer, co-creator; writer (story): "The Vulcan Hello"; director: "Brother"|
|2020||Star Trek: Picard||Executive producer|
- Jewish Journal: "Screenwriter Alex Kurtzman ‘Transforms’ filmdom’s giant robot genre" by Adam Wills July 5, 2007
- Variety Magazine: "Abrams keeps it all in the fan family - J.J. and his collaborators conquer Hollywood" By Cynthia Littleton October 16, 2009 |"We’re all self-deprecating short Jews, with the exception of Bob Orci”
- Jewish Journal: "Jews Get Geek on at Comic-Con" by Adam Wills July 22, 2009
- "Alex Kurtzman Biography". IGN. Archived from the original on 2012-01-06. Retrieved 2012-08-16.
- Itzkoff, Dave. "Character-Driven Films (but Keep the Kaboom)". New York Times.
- Pomerantz, Dorothy (May 18, 2011). "Roberto Orci And Alex Kurtzman: Hollywood's Secret Weapons". Forbes.
- "Alex Kurtzman & Roberto Orci Splitting Up on Bigscreen (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. April 22, 2014. Retrieved 2014-04-22.
- Hubler, Shawn (June 27, 2007). "Reel life was his real love". Los Angeles Times.
- Roberto Orci (2008-08-10). "The All New "Hey Roberto" Thread". Don Murphy. Retrieved 2008-10-22.
- Fleming, Mike (April 24, 2012). "Alex Kurtzman & Roberto Orci Re-Writing Sequel To 'Amazing Spider-Man'". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 2012-04-24.