Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris

Last updated
Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris
Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris on January 26, 2006.jpg
Dayton and Faris on January 26, 2006
Born (1957-07-07) July 7, 1957 (age 61)
Alameda County, California, U.S. (Dayton)
(1958-10-20) October 20, 1958 (age 60)
Los Angeles County, California, U.S. (Faris)
OccupationFilm directors, music video directors
Notable work
Little Miss Sunshine
Ruby Sparks
Battle of the Sexes

Jonathan Dayton (born July 7, 1957) and Valerie Faris (born October 20, 1958) are a team of American film and music video directors that received critical acclaim for their feature film directorial debut, Little Miss Sunshine (2006). Later the married couple went on to direct the romantic comedy-drama Ruby Sparks (2012), and the biographical sports drama Battle of the Sexes (2017). They are currently slated to direct a new Netflix comedy series, Living With Yourself , starring Paul Rudd. [1]

A music video director is the head of music video production. The director conceives of videos' artistic and dramatic aspects while instructing the musical act, technical crew, actors, models, and dancers. They may or may not be in collaboration with the musical act.

<i>Little Miss Sunshine</i> American comedy-drama road film

Little Miss Sunshine is a 2006 American comedy-drama road film and the directorial debut of the husband-wife team of Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris. The screenplay was written by first-time writer Michael Arndt. The film stars Greg Kinnear, Steve Carell, Toni Collette, Paul Dano, Abigail Breslin, and Alan Arkin, and was produced by Big Beach Films on a budget of US$8 million. Filming began on June 6, 2005 and took place over 30 days in Arizona and Southern California.

<i>Ruby Sparks</i> 2012 film by Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris

Ruby Sparks is a 2012 romantic comedy-drama film directed by Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris, and written by Zoe Kazan. It stars Paul Dano as an anxious novelist whose fictional character, Ruby Sparks, played by Kazan, comes to life.


Life and career

Dayton was born in Alameda County, California and grew up in Grass Valley, California. After graduating from Ygnacio Valley High School in Concord, California, attended the UCLA Film School, studying film and television in the late-1970s; while there, he met Valerie Faris, a dance student and native of Los Angeles County, California, who became his wife and his partner. They have three children together. [2] Valerie is the daughter of Paula Forbes, a supervising painter, and Jim Faris, a film editor. [3]

Alameda County, California County in California

Alameda County is a county in the state of California in the United States. As of the 2010 census, the population was 1,510,271, making it the 7th-most populous county in the state. The county seat is Oakland. Alameda County is included in the San Francisco Bay Area, occupying much of the East Bay region.

Grass Valley, California City in California, United States

The city of Grass Valley is the largest city in the western region of Nevada County, California, United States. Situated at roughly 2,500 feet (760 m) elevation in the western foothills of the Sierra Nevada mountain range, this historic northern Gold Country city is 57 miles (92 km) by car from the state capitol in Sacramento, 64 miles (103 km) from Sacramento International Airport, 88 miles (142 km) west of Reno, and 143 miles (230 km) northeast of San Francisco. As of the 2010 United States Census, its population was 12,860.

Ygnacio Valley High School Public high school in Concord, California, USA

Ygnacio Valley High School (YVHS) is a public secondary school located in Concord, California, United States. It draws students from Concord as well as from the neighboring communities of Walnut Creek and Pleasant Hill. The school opened in 1962, and its first senior class graduated in 1964. Originally conceived as a temporary facility, the school currently carries an enrollment of over 1,500 total students for grades 9 through 12. When the nearby Northgate High School opened in 1974, YVHS lost approximately half its student body at the time. The school is part of the Mount Diablo Unified School District.

As a pair, Dayton and Faris have directed and produced music videos, documentaries, commercials and films. They have directed music videos for bands such as Oasis, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Beastie Boys, and R.E.M.. Their 1996 video for "Tonight Tonight" by The Smashing Pumpkins won six MTV Video Music Awards. Another video of theirs that received significant success was for the 1990 Extreme song "More Than Words". [4]

Oasis (band) English rock band

Oasis were an English rock band formed in Manchester in 1991. Developed from an earlier group, the Rain, the band originally consisted of Liam Gallagher, Paul "Bonehead" Arthurs (guitar), Paul "Guigsy" McGuigan and Tony McCarroll (drums). Upon returning to Manchester, Liam's older brother, Noel Gallagher joined as a fifth member, which formed the band's core and settled line-up. During the course of their existence, they had various line-up changes.

Red Hot Chili Peppers American rock band

Red Hot Chili Peppers are an American rock band formed in Los Angeles in 1983. The group's musical style primarily consists of rock with an emphasis on funk, as well as elements from other genres such as punk rock and psychedelic rock. When played live, their music incorporates elements of jam band due to the improvised nature of many of their performances. Currently, the band consists of founding members vocalist Anthony Kiedis and bassist Flea, longtime drummer Chad Smith, and former touring guitarist Josh Klinghoffer. Red Hot Chili Peppers are one of the best-selling bands of all time with over 80 million records sold worldwide, they have been nominated for 16 Grammy Awards, of which they have won six, and are the most successful band in alternative rock radio history, currently holding the records for most number-one singles (13), most cumulative weeks at number one (85) and most top-ten songs (25) on the Billboard Alternative Songs chart. In 2012, they were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Beastie Boys American hip hop band

The Beastie Boys were an American hip hop group from New York City formed in 1981. The group comprised Michael "Mike D" Diamond, Adam "MCA" Yauch and Adam "Ad-Rock" Horovitz.

They directed a number of sketches for the 1995-1998 HBO sketch comedy series Mr. Show . [4]

HBO American pay television network

HBO is an American premium cable and satellite television network owned by the namesake unit Home Box Office, Inc., a division of AT&T's WarnerMedia. The program which featured on the network consists primarily of theatrically released motion pictures and original television shows, along with made-for-cable movies, documentaries and occasional comedy and concert specials.

In 1998, they established a production company, "Bob Industries". Through this company the pair directed commercials for companies such as HP, Volkswagen, Sony, GAP, Target, IKEA, Apple Computer, and ESPN. Most famously, the two directed a 1999 commercial for the Volkswagen Cabrio, titled "Milky Way", whose soundtrack consisted entirely of the 1972 Nick Drake song "Pink Moon", and which is credited with single-handedly initiating a massive revival of interest in Nick Drake's music. [5]

Hewlett-Packard American information technology company

The Hewlett-Packard Company or Hewlett-Packard was an American multinational information technology company headquartered in Palo Alto, California. It developed and provided a wide variety of hardware components as well as software and related services to consumers, small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) and large enterprises, including customers in the government, health and education sectors.

Volkswagen automotive brand manufacturing subsidiary of Volkswagen Group

Volkswagen ; ); shortened to VW, is a German automaker founded on 28 May 1937 by the German Labour Front, and headquartered in Wolfsburg. It is the flagship marque of the Volkswagen Group, the largest automaker by worldwide sales in 2016 and 2017. The group's main market is in China, which delivers 40% of its sales and profits.

Sony Japanese multinational conglomerate corporation

Sony Corporation is a Japanese multinational conglomerate corporation headquartered in Kōnan, Minato, Tokyo. Its diversified business includes consumer and professional electronics, gaming, entertainment and financial services. The company owns the largest music entertainment business in the world, the largest video game console business and one of the largest video game publishing businesses, and is one of the leading manufacturers of electronic products for the consumer and professional markets, and a leading player in the film and television entertainment industry. Sony was ranked 97th on the 2018 Fortune Global 500 list.

They began to be offered feature films to direct at around this time; among projects that they turned down were The Mod Squad (1999) and Bad Boys II (2003). [4]

<i>The Mod Squad</i> (film) 1999 film by Scott Silver

The Mod Squad is a 1999 American mystery film directed by Scott Silver and starring Claire Danes, Omar Epps and Giovanni Ribisi. It is based on the popular television show of the same name. Peggy Lipton and Clarence Williams III who played Julie and Linc in the original series, make cameo appearances.

<i>Bad Boys II</i> 2003 American action comedy film directed by Michael Bay

Bad Boys II is a 2003 American action comedy film directed by Michael Bay, produced by Jerry Bruckheimer, and starring Will Smith and Martin Lawrence. A sequel to the 1995 film Bad Boys and the second installment in the Bad Boys series, the film follows detectives Burnett and Lowrey investigating the flow of ecstasy into Miami. The film grossed $273 million worldwide.

In 2001, they began to work on the film Little Miss Sunshine ; it was released in 2006. [4] The film won the Audience Award at the 2006 Sydney Film festival and an ovation at the 2006 Sundance Film Festival, and was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Picture.

In 2006, the pair were announced as the directors of a planned screen adaptation of Tom Perrotta's novel The Abstinence Teacher for Warner Independent Pictures. [6] In 2007 Perrotta wrote a screenplay with input from Dayton and Faris. [7] However, by 2012 they had left the project, and it was taken over by director Lisa Cholodenko. [8]

Their next film was Ruby Sparks in 2012. Dayton and Faris then directed Battle of the Sexes , about the famous tennis match between Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs, with Emma Stone as King and Steve Carell as Riggs. The film also stars Elisabeth Shue, Alan Cumming, and Sarah Silverman, and was released in 2017.






Related Research Articles

Lance Acord A.S.C. is an American cinematographer.

Tom Perrotta American novelist and screenwriter

Thomas R. Perrotta is an American novelist and screenwriter best known for his novels Election (1998) and Little Children (2004), both of which were made into critically acclaimed, Academy Award-nominated films. Perrotta co-wrote the screenplay for the 2006 film version of Little Children with Todd Field, for which he received an Academy Award nomination for Best Adapted Screenplay. He is also known for his novel The Leftovers (2011), which has been adapted into a TV series on HBO.

<i>The Smashing Pumpkins – Greatest Hits Video Collection (1991–2000)</i> 2001 video by Smashing Pumpkins

The Smashing Pumpkins – Greatest Hits Video Collection (1991–2000) is a DVD containing nearly all of The Smashing Pumpkins music videos released prior to the band's breakup in late 2000. Extras include an exclusive short film Try, a previously unreleased "I Am One" music video, behind-the-scenes and outtakes footage, two live videos, and commentary by Jimmy Chamberlin, Billy Corgan, James Iha, and the video directors.

Kevin Bray is an American film, television, commercial and music video director. Bray attended the University of Michigan and the University of Paris (Sorbonne) before completing his studies at New York University's Tisch School of the Arts. Bray also goes by his initials, KGB.

The 10th Online Film Critics Society Awards, honoring the best in film for 2006, were given on 8 January 2007.

The 19th Chicago Film Critics Association Awards, given by the CFCA on December 28, 2006 honored the best in film for 2006.

The 32nd Los Angeles Film Critics Association Awards, given by the Los Angeles Film Critics Association (LAFCA), honored the best in film for 2006.

The Online Film Critics Society Award for Best Breakthrough Filmmaker is an annual film award given by the Online Film Critics Society to honor the best breakthrough filmmaker of the year.

Toni Trucks American actress

Toni Trucks is an American theater, film, and television actress.

<i>The Abstinence Teacher</i> novel by Tom Perrotta

The Abstinence Teacher is a 2007 novel by American author Tom Perrotta. It tells the story of Ruth Ramsey, a divorced sexual education teacher who lives in suburban New Jersey and comes into conflict with the town's conservative population. According to Perrotta, it is "all about sex education and the culture wars." He was inspired to write the novel after reading of the influence of evangelical voters on the 2004 presidential election, stating, "I did feel somewhat inadequate as a novelist, just like I'd missed something huge happening in this country. I really did set out to kind of investigate that world." The novel also touches on other issues such as homophobia and sexism in the suburban setting.

Melissa Etheridge discography

This is a comprehensive listing of official releases by American rock singer Melissa Etheridge. She has released 14 studio albums, 43 singles and 38 music videos on Island Records and ME Records.

Busy Child 1997 single by The Crystal Method

"Busy Child" is a breakbeat single by The Crystal Method from the album Vegas. It is one of the group's most recognizable works, reaching #17 on Hot Dance Club Play charts, and remaining on even ten years later.

Peter Lauer is an American music video and television director.

Pamela Martin is an American film and television editor with more than fifteen feature film credits commencing in 1994.

R. Kelly videography

The videography of American R&B singer R. Kelly, consists of 90 music videos, 7 cameo appearances, 1 commercial.

Matt Broadley is a Swedish director. He has made music videos for several songs that went #1 on the charts, like "All That She Wants" and "Mr. Vain".

Living With Yourself is an upcoming American comedy web television series created by Timothy Greenberg set to premiere on Netflix. It stars Paul Rudd who also executive produces alongside Greenberg, Anthony Bregman, Jeff Stern, Tony Hernandez, Jonathan Dayton, Valerie Faris, and Jeffrey Blitz.


  1. Petski, Denise (August 10, 2018). Paul Rudd To Topline Netflix Comedy Series ‘Living With Yourself’ From Timothy Greenberg.
  2. "Jonathan Dayton Biography". IMDB.
  3. "Jim Faris Dead: Film Editor, Father of Director Valerie Faris, Dies at 97". Hollywood Reporter. 2016-11-04. Retrieved 2018-07-26.
  4. 1 2 3 4 Evans, Bradford (July 19, 2012). "The Lost Projects of Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris". Splitsider.
  5. Vaziri, Aidin (April 11, 2000). "Nick Drake's "Pink Moon" is Rising". Rolling Stone.
  6. LaPorte, Nicole, and Pamela McClintock. "'Sunshine' duo in talks for next feature: Dayton, Faris may adapt 'Abstinence Teacher'", Variety , 2006-12-06. Retrieved on 2007-07-07.
  7. Schwartz, Missy. "The Q&A: Tom Perrotta: His Novel Take on Suburban Life", Entertainment Weekly, 2007-10-15. Retrieved on 2007-10-20.
  8. Vineyard, Jen (May 11, 2012). "Exclusive: Lisa Cholodenko Confirms She'll Direct 'The Abstinence Teacher' & Heads Into The 'Wild' With Reese Witherspoon". IndieWire > The Playlist.
  9. "Britney Spears, "When Your Eyes Say It"". (video). ASG. 1998–2017. Retrieved 29 January 2017.