Career Brief – Alexander Payne
Success comes with hard work and determination – that is what Alexander Payne is proud of. Alexander is a native of Omaha, Nebraska, and was born in February 1961. His parents were Peggy Constantine and George Payne. His father was of German and Greek descent and he was a restaurant owner and operator while his mother was a romance languages professor.
Alexander went to study in Creighton Prep school for his high school studies where he graduated in 1979. He was active at the school as he had a humor column in the student newspaper. He was also an editor at the school for the yearbook. He later went to Stanford University for his B.A, majoring in Spanish and History. He completed his university education in 1984.
He later went to further his studies in Spain and he did his undergraduate degree in Columbia. After returning to California from Columbia, he joined the UCLA Film School and graduated in 1990 with an MFA. His thesis film project, Passion of Martin, was his light to the film industry. Six weeks after the film release, Payne received a deal from Universal Pictures to become a writer-director.
When Payne was young, his father received a loyal reward from Kraft Foods. He later gave Payne the reward, which became to be Payne’s motivation to join the movie industry. His deal with Universal Pictures did not result in any movie release but was a huge development for Payne.
After doing various work-for-hire projects, Payne and his partner, Jim Taylor, embarked on their movie career and they released their first movie Citizen Ruth in 1996. What followed later was a series of other successful movie works.
Some of Alexander Payne’s works have earned him nominations and awards. Two of his works, Sideways and Nebraska, were the most successful as they had several nominations. Sideways had five Oscar nominations and it won an award for the best screenplay. Nebraska had six nominations at the Academy Awards.
Payne is also a film producer. One of his major production works is the Hung series for HBO television between 2009 and 2011.