John Ridley

John Ridley

Highest Rated: 100% Let It Fall: Los Angeles 1982-1992 (2017)

Lowest Rated: 25% Ben-Hur (2016)

Birthday: Sep 30, 1965

Birthplace: Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA

John Ridley was an African-American writer, director, and producer who was involved in several high profile television show and films, most notably the Academy Award-winning drama, "12 Years a Slave" (2013). Ridley was born in 1965 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He first started off as a writer for the hit sitcoms "Martin" (Fox 1992-97) and "The Fresh Prince of Bel Air" (NBC 1990-96), after which he served as both a writer and co-producer of the critically-acclaimed "The John Larroquette Show" (NBC 1993-96). Audiences next saw Ridley's first foray into feature films, "Cold Around the Heart" (1997) which starred David Caruso and Chris Noth. Ridley then wrote a script about American soldiers out to look for gold bullion at the end of the Persian Gulf War, which director David O. Russell adapted into the film "Three Kings" (1999), starring George Clooney and Mark Wahlberg, reportedly without using any of Ridley's original script, which caused a feud between writer and director. Ridley continued to write for television, including his own original series "Platinum" (UPN 2003), the film adaptation "Barbershop" (Showtime 2005) and "The Wanda Sykes Show" (Fox 2009-2010); he also served as executive producer of the latter two shows. Ridley's career reached new heights when he was tasked to write the screenplay for "12 Years a Slave," a film adaptation of Solomon Northup's memoir that chronicled the story of how he was kidnapped and sold into slavery in the mid-19th century. The film was universally praised by critics and Ridley himself garnered numerous awards, including Best Adapted Screenplay at the 86th Academy Awards. Ridley made his directorial debut the following year with "Jimi: All Is By My Side" (2014), a film starring Andre Benjamin of the hip hop duo Outkast as rock legend Jimi Hendrix, portraying him in 1966 just prior to his international breakthrough. Despite critical acclaim for Benjamin's performance, the film was met with general disinterest at the box office. Ridley next made the move into television, creating and producing the drama "American Crime" (ABC 2015- ), which follows the repercussions of a single crime throughout an entire season.




36% 60% Needle in a Timestack Director,
- 2021
100% 89% Let It Fall: Los Angeles 1982-1992 Director,
- 2017
25% 53% Ben-Hur Screenwriter,
Executive Producer
$26.4M 2016
67% 36% Jimi: All Is by My Side Director,
Executive Producer
$323.0K 2013
95% 90% 12 Years a Slave Screenwriter,
Executive Producer
$56.7M 2013
40% 57% Red Tails Screenwriter $49.9M 2012
No Score Yet 75% Phunny Business: A Black Comedy Narrator - 2010
No Score Yet No Score Yet Those Who Walk in Darkness Writer - 2003
78% 64% Undercover Brother Screenwriter,
Executive Producer
$38.2M 2002
94% 77% Three Kings Writer $60.7M 1999
No Score Yet 24% Cold Around the Heart Director,
$552 1997
60% 62% U-Turn Screenwriter,
Executive Producer
$6.6M 1997


92% 84% Godfather of Harlem Director 2019
No Score Yet 8% The View Guest 2017
75% 52% Guerrilla Executive Producer 2017
96% 89% American Crime Executive Producer,
No Score Yet No Score Yet Tavis Smiley Guest 2017
No Score Yet No Score Yet Close Up With The Hollywood Reporter Guest 2016
No Score Yet 66% Real Time With Bill Maher Guest 2014-2015
64% No Score Yet Barbershop Executive Producer 2005
83% No Score Yet Platinum Executive Producer,
No Score Yet 91% The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air Unknown (Guest Star) 1994