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Screenwriter & Director, "Frozen"

At a Glance

Jennifer Lee : Biography at a Glance

  • Screenwriter and director of “Frozen,” which won a Golden Globe, a Critics Choice Award, a British Academy Film Award and two Oscars for best animated feature and best original song
  • Co-wrote the screenplay for the Oscar-nominated “Wreck-it Ralph”
  • First female in its 90-year history to direct a feature film for the Walt Disney Animation Studios
  • Named one of Variety's “Top-Ten Screenwriters to Watch"

Academy Award-winning Director Jennifer Lee has dedicated her life to the art of storytelling. She earned a BA in English literature from the University of New Hampshire in 1992. She then moved to New York City and built a career in book publishing.

Saturdays at Lincoln Center introduced her to the films of Agnes Varda, the Coen brothers, and Atom Egoyan. Inspired, she made her first short film and fell in love with visual storytelling. She entered Columbia University’s graduate Film program in 2001. There she received the William Goldman Award for excellence in screenwriting, and her first feature-length script Hinged on Stars won the Columbia University Film Festival. She graduated in 2005 with an MFA in film.

Her original script Lucid Dreams was optioned by Radiant Productions. Her next original script The Roundup was a quarter-finalist for the Nicholl Fellowship in screenwriting in 2009, and has since been optioned by Leonardo DiCaprio’s production company Appian Way.

Lee co-wrote the screenplay for Oscar-nominated Wreck-It Ralph for Walt Disney Animation Studios. She received the Annie Award for Best Writing in an Animated Feature Film.

While finishing Wreck-It Ralph, Lee was tapped to write the screenplay for Disney’s Frozen. She was also asked to direct the film with animation veteran Chris Buck, and became the first female in its 90-year history to direct a feature film for the Walt Disney Animation Studios. In 2013, she was named as one of Variety’s top-ten screenwriters to watch, and Frozen went on to win numerous awards, including a Golden Globe, a Critics Choice Award, a BAFTA Award, and two Academy Awards® for Best Animated Feature and Best Original Song. Lee currently lives in Los Angeles with her daughter Agatha.

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