Bill Guttentag is a double Oscar-winning dramatic and documentary film writer-producer-director. His films have premiered at the Sundance, Cannes, Telluride, and Tribeca film festivals. He directed Nanking (THINKFilm/Fortissimo), a theatrical documentary which premiered at the 2007 Sundance Film Festival and featured Woody Harrelson and Mariel Hemingway, and was shortlisted for an Oscar. He also directed Soundtrack for a Revolution (Wild Bunch) which had its international premiere at the 2009 Cannes Film Festival and was also shortlisted for an Oscar.
He wrote and directed the dramatic features Knife Fight (IFC, 2013) starring Rob Lowe, Julie Bowen, and Carrie-Ann Moss; and LIVE! (The Weinstein Company, 2008) starring Eva Mendes and Andre Braugher, and produced by Chuck Roven. Both films premiered at Tribeca.
Bill Guttentag won an Academy Award for the documentary Twin Towers (Universal, 2003). He has also received a second Oscar, three additional Oscar nominations, a Peabody Award, three Emmy Awards, two additional Emmy nominations, two Writers Guild Award nominations, a Producers Guild Award nomination, and a Robert Kennedy Journalism Award.
His films have been selected for Sundance three times, Tribeca four times, and have won awards at numerous American and international film festivals. They have also received a number of special screenings internationally and in the US, including at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Harvard Kennedy School, and the White House.
His film Only the Dead See the End of War, premiered theatrically at the 2015 Telluride Film Festival, and premiered on HBO in March 2016. He won an AACTA Award (Australian Academy Award) for best directing for a documentary, and a Walkley Award (Australian Pulitzer) for the film. The film received an Emmy Award nomination in 2017.
He created and executive-produced the NBC series Crime & Punishment, which ran for three seasons (2002-2004). The series was part of the Law & Order family of shows, and was created with Dick Wolf, who was also an executive producer, and was made in partnership with Anonymous Content. Over the series’ run, nearly every show was in the Nielsen top 20.
His novel Boulevard was published by Pegasus Books/W.W. Norton in 2011, and the French edition was published by Éditions Gallimard (2013), where it was finalist for the Grand Prix de Littérature Policière. He co-wrote Masters of Disaster – The Ten Commandments of Damage Control (Palgrave/Macmillan, 2012). He has also written nonfiction pieces, including for The Wall Street Journal and The Los Angeles Times.
He has directed commercials and other work for a number of Silicon Valley companies, including Google, Yahoo, and MasterClass.
Nanking won awards at a number of US and international film festivals (including Sundance and Hong Kong), and after its theatrical release, played on Cinemax. Guttentag won a Peabody Award and Emmy Award and was nominated for a WGA award for the film. Nanking’s international release included China, where it became the highest grossing theatrical documentary in Chinese history.
Soundtrack for a Revolution was distributed internationally by Wild Bunch, released theatrically in the US by Area 23a, and later aired on PBS. Guttentag was nominated for WGA and Producer’s Guild awards, and a Humanitas Prize for the film, which also won audience and other awards at US and international film festivals.
He has directed films for HBO, ABC, CBS, Turner, and others. His films include The Cocaine War, an ABC special on the drug war in South America, and You Don’t Have to Die, a film he made for HBO, for which he also won an Oscar.
Bill Guttentag has been a lecturer at the Stanford University Graduate School of Business since 2001. He also teaches at the Hasso Plattner Institute of Design (Stanford d.school).
He has shown his films and given lectures at many US and international universities including: Yale; Harvard; the University of Pennsylvania; University of California, Berkeley; USC; Peking University; Fudan University; Kyoto University; the Hong Kong Academy of Performing Arts; and Freie Universität Berlin. Other screenings include The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences; The Paley Center for Media; The Council on Foreign Relations; and the Brooklyn Academy of Music.