jD is an award winning Writer/Director/Actor/Creative Consultant.
Most of those awards are great. One…not so much.
jD has sold over a dozen screenplays to almost every major Hollywood studio including, Warner Brothers, Disney, New Line, Miramax, Paramount & Twentieth Century Fox.
Although jD writes in many genres, Mel Brooks called jD, “One of the greatest comic minds I’ve ever had the pleasure to work with.”
And Stan Lee said "Jake is the Ironman of comedy."
jD has been The Creative Consultant on many movies, Most he can not talk about due to signing NDA's which is customary in Hollywood. He has done rewriting and punch ups, as well as watched rough cuts and given editing notes as well as scenes to reshoot or shoot. Many of these movie have gone on to become block busters, some have won prestigious nominations & awards, including Oscar nominations awards. jD's movies have combined made almost 3 billion dollars world wide.
jD’s television deals include: Twentieth Century Fox, Big Ticket, Sony Pictures and Spelling Entertainment.
jD is directing an indie movie from a script he co-wrote with Aaron William Dozier called, TwoFour The Road. ll be shot in Astoria, Madrid and other areas of Spain, NYC and LA. It will be in english and Spanish. jD will start looking for cast and crew in Jan 2024. The story is about one person who learns to live and not just exist in fear. And another person who learns to control his dangerous animal instincts and become "Human." (This character is being played by the Spanish actor Eduardo Castejon). The movies DP is Alfonso Antolín. The studio & distributer(s) will call this move an "Action/Comedy." Since jD doesn't doesn't like labels. He often will say "No one and no thing is the sum total of the label they are given by others and even themselves" - jD)calls it a "movie" and feels it's up to those who watch it, who will have many different and diverse opinions to "categorise" it (In seminars jD gives he ask s"What category would you put the movie 'Die Hard:' in?" Pretty much every answer is "Action"! Or Action/Comedy!" jD's answer is, "Sort of. It''s actually a love story. Wrapped around genre of action/comedy. It's the story of a husband and wife who do't think they care or love each other anymore. And how they both, the Bruce Willis character in particular, go through Dante's Hell to save her because he, and his wife, realise their love is still very much alive.")
jD overcame his tremendous fear of public speaking, anxiety, being in a crowds, being shy and mixing up words Dyslexic (Actually many performers have many of these issues) and started performing stand-up. One of the people who talk jD into doing stand up was Robin William. jD was made a Made Man (Paid Regular) by Mitzi Shore at The World Famous Comedy Store in Los Angeles in near record time in 2007. (jD been doing stand up for a little over. year) Mitzi wants jD to do a. movie on her life which was almost set up at Fix Searchlight with him directing. Then it fell apart. As often happens with projects. jD is also a paid regular at hStand Up NY, in NYC.
From 2002 to 2016 jD was creative partners with comic book legend Stan Lee. Together they created much comic book content.
jD is very proud that Stan called him his “Protégé.” Stan became like a grandfather to jD and talk to him about lots of things he didn’t discuss with many people and are not public knowledge. jD is thinking about writing a book (with it becoming a limited TV series) about his time with Stan; especially dealing with one of their projects in particular called: “The NHL Guardian Project.”
jD willl be doing a world tour of his new stand up.storytelling one man show in May & June of 2024. Countries, cities, dates and timed are still being worked out.The name of the show is:STAN LEE & ME: jD's MARVELous Tour Filled With Non-Woke Humour
After sort of graduating university jD moved to Hollywood and wrote, on spec, Robin Hood: Men In Tights. MIT sold to Mel Brooks & Twentieth Century Fox. jD was heavily involved in production. He convinced/ fought Mel to hire the then unknown
Dave Chappelle. jD wrote all the lyrics to all the music in MIT.
jD wrote the screenplay for Four Days’ in April. It’s based on the true story of a Norwegian woman living in Sweden during WW2, who ends up changing the course of the war and helping defeat the nazis. The stripes was inspired by the historical novel, "Fyra Dagar I April" by renowned Swedish novelist/journalist and historian Magnus Alkarp. Development was funded by Swedish Film Productions. The movie was about to go into official pre-production then Covid19 hit. Like many projects that got knocked -out or suspended until??? prior to and during Four Days in April is in a holding pattern. The production company has already agreed to give all rights back to jD and Magnus.
jD wrote & directed the short movie, Un Viaje. Shot in LA, Malibu, NYC, Madrid, Marbella, Lisbon and Venice, almost entirely on an iPhone 6S, it was accepted as an Official Entry in several festival including, The Madrid Art Festival, 2018.”
Because the job of God was already taken, jD wrote, directed & co-starred in We Married Margo. Shot on 35mm film in 17 days for $280,000 We Married Margo won The Audience Award for Best Film at The HBO Comedy Festival.
We Married Margo caught the eye of George Lucas. Lucas invited jD to Skywalker Ranch for a free sound mix and great advice.Besides the HBO Festival, We Married Margo was in completion at many other prestigious festivals including: Slamdance, NY Film Festival, and The LA Comedy Festival, and the Pi Phan Film Festival. We Married Margo won many awards for the movie, the writing, the directing and one for jD’s acting. New Line acquired Margo for distribution.
We Married Margo
jD premiered his one man, one hour live storytelling/stand up show, I'M with STUPID at The Edinburgh Festival Fringe in 2022 (His first time preforming there after many years of invites) The Gilded Balloon. Word-of-mouth and several great reviews (there were also several bad reviews) grot jD packed audiences many of the 26 nights he preformed (Room sat 109 people).
jD premiered his second , one man, one hour stand up/storytelling show jD SHAPIRO STORIES FROM THE HOOD TO HOLLYWOOD: If It Ain't Woke...Don't Fix It" at The Edinburgh Festival Fringe in 2023 in Just The Tonic in The Attic Room. Due to several reasons jD wasn't able to start performing until 15 August 2023. Which, unfortunately, meant no reviewers.
This is jD here. I wanted a more intimate space for my show than last year (Room sat 50 people). What I didn't want was a piece of shit room which- which was what this was/is. It's Incredibly hot, moist, had no vents. (Great for comedy) And a fan up front blew the bad/hot/moist air around the room at audience members (Also fantastic for comedy- or, say, catching Covid). I found all this out after I had singed the deal nver seing the room (I was in Edinbrugh several times and asked to see the room way before August and before I signed the deal. . Duhhhhh... I should have realised why they wouldn't let me see it). I found out how bad the room was when I did my tech rehearsal on 14 August 2023. And I found why it's so bad: When there is no Ed Fringe Fest it's an attic above a bar. The non-human piece of garbage who leases it out, Darrell (last name I forget), does it as a money grab, even though the bar has tried to stop him (You ask everyone who performed in that toxic room and I'm sure most, if not all, will agree with me. The woman who's show was before mine, very funny by the way, was incensd. She went off on Darell. And after. I spoke with him, nicely, and he said he'd get in a portable air conditioner, fix the mic problems, sound problems (NONE created by my tech who was fantastic!) I told him a way he could put in a temp vent, for all the shows, etc., etc.,, etc., - He lied and did none of the things he said he would. And yes, once nothing was done he knows exactly how I feel).
Worse, perhaps, is that my agents (now EX agents) and their "publicists" (Mel Clown. I mean Mel Brown) were the ones who strongly said I should preform in this room (My 2nd year at the festival I still was learning a lot about it- and the head of my ex agency said he had 22 years of experience, so, yeah, I thought he'd steer me in the right direction since they make money off of me. Well, made. No more). And maybe worse, I had been offered many other rooms, and because I went to see them, almost all of them turned out to be fantastic rooms to preform in. Since those rooms wer now all booked, I told Darell to "fook off" and for the other 11 nights I did my show at great restaurant that gave me and my audience the upstairs. The crowds grew larger and larger, reaching the capacity the room was allowed which is 157 people. Although not the intimate room I had originally desired, this turned out to be an incredible experience for me (And I think most of the audience members). Most audience members would ask me to go on with my show (since there was no show right after mine) so I did. Many nights I perfomed for well over one hour, and for about 5 nights my performances lasted two hours.(Then the restaurant did needed the upstairs again for "regular" customers). Shockingly, only three people passed out due to boredom.
Thank you for letting me rant. Back to the good stuff:
jD wrote, then co-directed with Alfonso Antolín, Eva’s Comet. It's the story of two broken women, different in just about every way who, and end up helping each other move on with their lives. It has been honoured at many festivals in Spain, winning awards for Best Movie and Best Actress for Elisabeth Larena & Kimberly Tell.
jD was accepted into HB Studios and studied with several teachers there, including legendary acting teacher Uta Hagen, becoming one of her favorite students to yell at (Considered a badge of honor…supposedly) In April of 2023, jD was accepted into the acting/writing/director Masterclass taught by the incredible Ivana Chubbuck.
jD has had articles he’s written published in The NY Post and Written By Magazine. There have also been many articles and interviews written about jD in The USA, U.K, Spain and Sweden. jD has given lectures & seminars on writing, directing and acting at universities and events throughout The USA and in Spain. jD was asked to speak at Harvard Business School. jD has judged several film festivals in the United States & Spain.
Now... a not so good stuff. But turns out it helped me in more ways than it hurt. I think.
jD was the original writer of the infamous Battlefield Earth. Considered, and agreed upon by jD, the worst movie ever made. jD’s draft got John Travolta attached to play Johnny Goodbye Tyler. jD left the project due to creative differences with the studio, MGM. Travolta went on to play the Terl and BE went on to win the infamous, “Razzie Award: Worst Movie of the Decade.”
To find out how Battlefield Earth became a mess read jD’s humorous NY Post piece:
To see the speech jD gave at the 2010 Razzie Awards:
Other things of note... or not.
SOME OF THE SCRIPTS & BOOK jD HAS SOLD
Think Like a Man: The Only Guide You’ll Ever Need: After jD finish his first book, The Cat in The Hat” he loved it so much he decided to write one of his own. Think Like a Man... was published by Austin Macauley Publishers in June, 2019. It is on several Must Read lists. It’s available in most book stores, including Barnes & Nobel. It’s a guide to how men think, thus giving women the tools to use to get a man in a way a man will love. No tricks or gimmicks like so many other books on this subject which never work for a long lasting, real relationship. The book is also funny. The comment’s jD gets the most is the book is “Empowering”.
Daddy’s Girl: A comedy about an over protective dad who has to learn to let go of his 18 yr old daughter, who has to learn to grow up. Optioned by NewLine (2005)
Working Class Hero: An action/drama about a cop trying to make up for a past mistake. Co-written w/ Jimmy Cummings. Sold it to Gale Anne Hurd (2004)
Salvage: A post-apocalyptic script set up w/ Gear Head Productions. Dan Myrick (The Blair Witch Project) was set to direct and jD was set to play the co-lead (2004)
Super Cops: The true story of two highly decorated Vietnam vets turned Super cops, and how they became the only two LAPD police officers to face the death penalty. Developed w/ Jimmy
Cummings for Nittolo Entertainment (2000)
Blast Off! Action story about a group of men who take over the space shuttle. An ex astronaut needs to overcome his intense fear of flying-- or not only is the world in peril, but so is his wife, who is the captain of the shuttle. Wrote this on spec and sold to Interscope Films (1997)
Fear: Dark thriller about a man who is looking for the murderer of his wife only to find out it was he. Based on a L. Ron Hubbard Novella and starring John Travolta. Bought by Miramax (1996)
Freakydeak Skylark: jD created, directed and executive produced this animated series for the Internet division of NBC (2007)
Signed, Sealed & Delivered: Action/comedy about a woman who gets trapped inside a post office when terrorists take it over. She learns she is much more capable than she ever realized. Betty Thomas was attached to direct and Glenn Close interested in playing the lead. It was co-written w/ Aaron William Dozier on spec. Sold to Disney’s Touchstone Pictures (1995)
Solo To Mars: Sci-fi about a man who travels into space and, due to the stress and loneliness, befriends a fly trapped onboard. Starring Corbin Bernsen. Paramount Pictures (1994)
The Final Frontier: Sci-fi thriller about an astronaut who finds a way to travel to the most uncharted territory not known-- death. Written on spec and sold to Warner Brothers (1991)
Toy Soldiers: This Action/comedy was the first script jD ever sold. It’s about a group of kids who have to use their video game skills to save the day when a real life situation arises. Shortly after arriving to LA jD was commissioned to write this by an independent producer whose office was possibly the trunk of his car (1990)
OTHER INTERESTING FACTS.... SORT OF
Cristiano Ronaldo Ad: Creative Consultant. One of the most watched ads online ever (2016)
Mila Kunis: jD, along with Susan and Cami Curtis into going to the reading of Forgetting Sarah Marshall and thus doing the movie. This arguable turned her form a TV star into a movie star.
Pucked: jD co-starred in this stinker. The good guy is played by Jon Bon Jovi. Cary Elwes and jD are the bad guys. Luckily, the producer didn't like the changes jD made to his character and cut him out of most of the movie (2005)
jD created the character and played it in a series of Sunkist Pistachio Nut Commercials. One in the series went on to win Best Commercial in several important commercial competitions, including The Cannes Corporate Media & TV Awards (2005)
The Strand Venice: jD played a talent agent in this ensemble web series created, directed and executive produced by Dan Myrick (co-Creator co-Writer & co-Director of The Blair Witch Project) (2004)
Women in Film Awards: jD was the first ever MC for the first ever awards ceremony, which took place at The Sundance Film Festival in 2001.
jD was in several Independent movies no one has ever heard of and several theatre productions no one really cares about.
jD has been offered three reality TV series and turned all three down. He was, however, on The Osbournes- but not by choice. (The Annoying Neighbor episode. Yeah, that's jD & his friends) They did not know nor give them permission to use them in the episode. Uber Attorney Bert Fields wanted jD and Charlie, the owner of the house, to sue due to it being a precedent setting case (use of voice without permission) But they choose not to.
jD was a representative and sits on the board of TheCreators2030 UN SDGs Arts Initiative. It’s a sub initiative of ListenGive partner with the United Nations for Sustainable Development Goals. jD’s main task was to head up the fight on Climate Change and mentor young artists on how they can use their art to create positive change. jD is a member of Who’s Who in America.
jD has been interviewed on many print, online, podcast, TV & radio shows including: El Pais, The Jewish Chronics, Life With Steve Simmone, E!, Showtime, Comedy Central, IFC Bravo, MTV, PBS, The Mike & Juliet Show, Entertainment Tonight, CNN, Bizz Buzz, Movie Talk, MTV, The Bob & Tom Show, The Joey Reynolds Show on WOR. Etc.