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David Leslie Johnson is an American writer of cinema and television.



He began writing plays in the second grade and wrote his first screenplay at age nineteen. Johnson attended Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio, and graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree in Photography and Cinema. He began his career as a production assistant on Frank Darabont's The Shawshank Redemption, which was filmed on location in Johnson's hometown of Mansfield, Ohio, at the historic Mansfield Reformatory, where Johnson's great-grandfather had been a prison guard. Johnson spent the next five years as Darabont's assistant, using the opportunity to hone his craft as a screenwriter.

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