Sam Irvin is a veteran film and television director, producer, screenwriter, author, journalist and educator.
As a teenager, he edited and published Bizarre (1972 to 1975), a fanzine on fantasy, horror and science fiction films, for which he traveled to England to conduct in-person interviews with the likes of Vincent Price, Christopher Lee (on the set of the James Bond movie “The Man with the Golden Gun”), Peter Cushing, Diana Rigg, Ingrid Pitt, Jane Seymour, Joan Collins, Terence Fisher, Freddie Francis, and Sir James Carreras and his son, Michael Carreras (of Hammer Film Productions), among many others. (See retrospective 13 page spread on the history of Bizarre in Richard Klemensen’s Little Shoppe of Horrors, issue number 27, October 2011.)
After beginning his film career as the assistant to Brian De Palma on “Dressed to Kill,” Irvin has directed many movies, including “Guilty as Charged” (Rod Steiger, Lauren Hutton, Heather Graham, Isaac Hayes), “Acting on Impulse” (C. Thomas Howell, Linda Fiorentino, Nancy Allen, Paul Bartel Isaac Hayes, Cassandra Peterson), “Out There” (Billy Campbell, Rod Steiger, Billy Bob Thornton, Jill St. John, Paul Dooley, Robert Picardo, Julie Brown), “Fat Rose and Squeaky” (Louise Fletcher, Cicely Tyson, Julie Brown, Lea DeLaria), “Magic Island” (Zachery Ty Bryan, French Stewart, Isaac Hayes, Martine Beswick), “Oblivion” and its sequel “Oblivion 2: Backlash” (George Takei, Julie Newmar, Isaac Hayes, Meg Foster, Maxwell Caulfield), “A Very Cool Christmas” (George Hamilton, Donna Mills), “Deadly Skies” (Antonio Sabato Jr., Rae Dawn Chong, Michael Moriarty), “Proof of Innocence” (Joely Fisher, Denise Richards, Patrick Muldoon, Jim O’Heir, Debra Wilson), “My Santa” (Samaire Armstrong, Matthew Lawrence, Julie Brown, Jim O’Heir, Paul Dooley), and “Kiss of a Stranger” (Mariel Hemingway, Dyan Cannon, David Carradine) for which he also wrote the original screenplay. In addition, Sam directed fan favorite “Elvira’s Haunted Hills” (Cassandra Peterson).
Irvin has also produced a dozen additional films, including co executive producing Bill Condon’s Academy Award winning motion picture, “Gods and Monsters”(Sir Ian McKellen, Brendan Fraser, and Lynn Redgrave).
For television, Irvin directed three entire seasons of the supernatural series “Dante’s Cove”(Tracy Scoggins, Charlie David, Thea Gill, Stephen Amell, Booboo Stewart, Reichen Lehmkuhl), for which he also co wrote the theme song. Irvin has also directed all episodes of the comedy series “From Here! On OUT” (Terry Ray, T. J. Hoban, Juliet Mills, Suzanne Whang, Julie Brown). He also directed several episodes of Comedy Central’s “Strip Mall”(Julie Brown, Cindy Williams, Stella Stevens, Maxwell Caulfield, Jim O’Heir, Carolyn Hennesy).
Irvin’s first book “Kay Thompson: From Funny Face to Eloise” was published by Simon & Schuster and honored by Kirkus Reviews and the Theatre Library Association Awards as one of the “Best Biographies of the Year.” While researching the life of Thompson, Irvin served as a historical consultant for the Tony Award winning Broadway event “Liza’s at the Palace”(a recreation of Thompson’s nightclub act performed by her goddaughter Liza Minnelli). Irvin also produced and annotated the 3 CD compilation “Think Pink! A Kay Thompson Party”(Sepia Records). He has recently won a Rondo Hattan Classic Horror Award for his coverage of Frankenstein: The True Story in Little Shop of Horrors Magazine.
Between projects, Irvin is an adjunct faculty member at the University of Southern California School of Cinematic Arts where he teaches graduate courses on directing. He resides in Los Angeles.