Talent Guide

Joshua Leonard

  • Discipline:Director, Writer
  • Program Year:Directing Lab 2007


Joshua Leonard is a Los Angeles based actor/filmmaker, who first garnered attention with his memorable role in 1999’s groundbreaking hit The Blair Witch Project. As an actor, Leonard has continued to work in projects that push the envelope, including 2009’s Independent Spirit Award-winning Humpday, HBO’s acclaimed series Hung and Showtime’s United States of Tara.

In the recently completed Higher Ground, starring and directed by Vera Farmiga, Leonard plays a man at odds with his wife (Farmiga), when she leaves the Fundamentalist sect in which they’ve been immersed. Leonard also reteamed twice this year with his Humpday collaborators: first supporting in the The Freebie opposite Dax Shepard and Katie Aselton; and next, in the dramedy Treatment, where Leonard stars as a desperate writer who follows his intended subject into a rehab facility.

Rounding out an already full 2010, Leonard adapted, directed, and starred in The Lie, a devilish morality tale adapted from a short story by acclaimed author, T.C. Boyle. The project, which co-stars Mark Webber, Jess Weixler, Alia Shawkat and Jane Adams, will premiere at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival.

This is a coming home of sorts, as Leonard made his directorial debut at Sundance in 2005 with The Youth in Us, a disquieting but moving short that starred indie faves Lukas Haas and Kelli Garner. His next effort, Beautiful Losers, a documentary about a group of internationally renowned underground artists, won the Grand Jury prize at Cinevegas before its release by Oscilloscope in 2008.

Leonard has also directed music videos for popular acts such as Morcheeba, Harper Simon, and Fitz and the Tantrums. In 2009, his original screenplay, Spectacular Regret, was one of eight scripts selected to participate in Film Independent’s Directors lab.

Leonard began his career working with documentarians and experimental filmmakers at Mystic Fire Video, where he worked on films with subjects ranging from famed beat poet Alan Ginsburg, to the Dalai Lama and comparative mythologist Joseph Campbell.

Current Project

The Lie (Narrative Feature)


A man's life is altered unexpectedly after telling a lie to get out of work. http://www.wearethemasses.com/directors/joshua-leonard http://www.theliemovie.com