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Paul W. S. Anderson

Paul W. S. Anderson
Anderson at WonderCon 2012
Born Paul William Scott Anderson
(1965-03-04) 4 March 1965
Newcastle upon Tyne, England
Occupation Film director, producer, and screenwriter
Spouse(s) Milla Jovovich (2009–present)
Children Ever Gabo Anderson (b. 2007)
Dashiel Edan Jovovich-Anderson (b. 2015)

Paul William Scott Anderson (born 4 March 1965) is an English film director, producer, and screenwriter who regularly works in science fiction movies and video game movies. He is best known for directing, producing, and writing the Resident Evil films, which are based on the video games of the same name.


  • Early life 1
  • Career 2
  • Personal life 3
  • Filmography 4
  • Frequent collaborators 5
    • Actors / actresses 5.1
  • References 6
  • External links 7

Early life

Anderson was born in Wallsend of Newcastle upon Tyne, England. Educated at Newlands Preparatory School, Gosforth and later at Newcastle's Royal Grammar School, Anderson went on to graduate from the University of Warwick with a BA in Film and Literature.


Anderson made his debut as the writer-director of Shopping, which starred Sean Pertwee, Jude Law and Sadie Frost as thieves who smashed cars into storefronts. When released in the United Kingdom it was banned in some cinemas, and only gained a release in the United States as an edited, direct to video release.

After this, he directed the 1995 video game adaptation Mortal Kombat. While prior video game movies, like Super Mario Bros. and Street Fighter, had been all-out disasters, Mortal Kombat was well received by fans and some critics. He declined to direct the sequel, Mortal Kombat: Annihilation, which was not well received by critics or fans. Anderson was asked to direct a third movie, Mortal Kombat: Devastation, but declined again because he was too busy filming Resident Evil.

The success of Mortal Kombat gave Anderson free rein to choose his next project, Soldier, written by Blade Runner screenwriter David Webb Peoples. Intended as a "sidequel" to Blade Runner, the movie was set in the same universe (but not the same planet), and contained numerous references to the earlier film. Kurt Russell was attached to star, but was unavailable at the time, which delayed the production. In the meantime, Anderson made the science fiction horror film Event Horizon. It was poorly received at the box office, and Anderson blamed the failure on studio-enforced cuts. While not a box-office success, the film gained a small cult following.[1] Soldier was eventually completed and released in 1998, but was a disaster both commercially and critically.

After the poor performance of both Event Horizon and Soldier, Anderson was forced to think smaller. His planned remake of the cult film Death Race 2000 was put on hold, and he set about writing and directed a TV movie, The Sight, in 2000. It was a minor success, and Anderson returned to cinema screens in 2002 when he wrote and directed an adaptation of the survival horror video game series Resident Evil. At that point he began to credit himself as "Paul W. S. Anderson", to avoid confusion with the American director Paul Thomas Anderson. In comparison to his earlier movies, Resident Evil was produced on a moderate budget of $33,000,000 and became a commercial success in cinemas and on DVD with $102,441,078 at the box office. Anderson then wrote, but did not direct, the sequels Resident Evil: Apocalypse and Resident Evil: Extinction, both of which were commercial successes.

Anderson's next project was the much-anticipated Alien vs. Predator, a concept popularised by a series of Dark Horse Comics and hinted at in Predator 2. A movie version had been stuck in development hell for several years despite the franchise crossing into every other form of media, from books to comics to video games. The film was finally released in August 2004, grossing $172,544,654[2] internationally on a budget of $60 million, but received mostly negative reviews. Screenwriter Peter Briggs, who had penned the very first Alien vs. Predator screenplay, disputed some of Anderson's comments about the production in an online interview, saying Anderson's claim that Briggs' original screenplay was "locked down" was incorrect, and that many elements of Anderson's screenplay were suspiciously similar.[3] A sequel was made, called Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem, in which Anderson was not involved.

After completing Alien vs. Predator Anderson resumed work on his planned Death Race 2000 remake, which was released as simply Death Race in 2008. Two straight-to-video prequels were made, Death Race 2 in 2011, which Anderson wrote but did not direct, and Death Race 3: Inferno in 2013, which Anderson only produced and bridges the gap between the first prequel and the original film. In 2010, Anderson wrote and directed the fourth instalment in the Resident Evil film franchise, Resident Evil: Afterlife.

Anderson directed the 2011 adaptation of The Three Musketeers, who were played by Logan Lerman, Matthew Macfadyen, Ray Stevenson, and Luke Evans.[4]

Anderson wrote and directed the fifth installment in the Resident Evil film franchise, Resident Evil: Retribution. In March 2013, it was announced that Anderson will direct the sixth and final instalment of the Resident Evil film franchise.[5] His latest film is the 2014 historical disaster film Pompeii.

Personal life

In April 2007, People magazine announced that Anderson and actress Milla Jovovich, who met when Anderson directed her in the first Resident Evil film, were expecting a baby girl in November 2007. They were engaged in March 2009 and were married on 22 August 2009.[6][7] Jovovich gave birth to their first child, a daughter, Ever Gabo Anderson, on 3 November 2007 at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.[8] On 1 April 2015 their second daughter, Dashiel Edan, was born.[9]


Year Title Director Screenwriter Producer
1994 Shopping Yes Yes No
1995 Mortal Kombat Yes No No
1997 Event Horizon Yes No No
1998 Soldier Yes No No
2000 The Sight Yes Yes Yes
2002 Resident Evil Yes Yes Yes
2004 Alien vs. Predator Yes Yes No
2004 Resident Evil: Apocalypse No Yes Yes
2005 The Dark No No Yes
2006 Drift Yes No No
2007 DOA: Dead or Alive No No Yes
2007 Resident Evil: Extinction No Yes Yes
2008 Death Race Yes Yes Yes
2009 Pandorum No No Yes
2010 Resident Evil: Afterlife Yes Yes Yes
2011 The Three Musketeers Yes No Yes
2011 Death Race 2 No Yes Yes
2012 Resident Evil: Retribution Yes Yes Yes
2013 Death Race 3: Inferno No No Yes
2014 Pompeii Yes No Yes
2017 Resident Evil: The Final Chapter Yes Yes Yes

Frequent collaborators

Actors / actresses

Actors Shopping
Mortal Kombat
Event Horizon
The Sight
Resident Evil
Alien vs. Predator
Resident Evil: Apocalypse
Death Race
Resident Evil: Afterlife
The Three Musketeers
Resident Evil: Retribution
Resident Evil: The Final Chapter
Milla Jovovich
Sean Pertwee
Michaela Dicker
Tom Woodruff Jr.
Robin Shou
Jason Isaacs
Colin Salmon
Liz May Brice
Michelle Rodriguez
Sienna Guillory
Boris Kodjoe
Shawn Roberts
Mika Nakashima


  1. ^ DVD Verdict Review- Event Horizon
  2. ^ "Alien Vs. Predator (2004)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 20 July 2011. 
  3. ^ AvP' Writer Peter Briggs Responds to Paul Anderson!!"'". BD Horror News. 29 August 2004. 
  4. ^ "Paul WS Anderson Casts His Musketeers". 
  5. ^ "Paul W. S. Anderson is Definitely Directing Resident Evil 6". Retrieved 21 April 2013. 
  6. ^ Fromm, Emily (23 April 2007). "Milla Jovovich, Paul Anderson Expecting a Baby". (Time Inc.). Retrieved 17 May 2007. 
  7. ^ Leung, Julie. "Milla Jovovich Marries Paul W. S. Anderson". Retrieved 24 August 2009. 
  8. ^ "Milla Jovovich Gives Birth to Baby Girl". 4 November 2007. Archived from the original on 5 November 2007. Retrieved 4 November 2007. 
  9. ^ "Milla Jovovich Instagram photos and videos". millajovovich. 2015-04-02. Retrieved April 2, 2015. 

External links

  • Paul W. S. Anderson at the Internet Movie Database
  • Paul W. S. Anderson at Rotten Tomatoes
  • Paul Anderson at The Numbers
  • Paul W. S. Anderson at Box Office Mojo
  • Paul W. S. Anderson interview at
  • Paul WS Anderson interview on TheCinemaSource for Resident Evil: Afterlife
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