Armyan Bernstein is Chairman of Beacon Pictures, one of the most successful independently financed film companies in the entertainment business. His films, actors, and directors have been nominated for Golden Globes, Baftas, People’s Choice and Academy Awards, as well as gone on to generate billions of dollars in revenue for distributors and exhibitors throughout the world.
Bernstein has produced, executive produced, written or directed more than 40 films — including AIR FORCE ONE starring Harrison Ford, THE HURRICANE (which he also co-wrote) starring Denzel Washington, SPY GAME starring Brad Pitt and Robert Redford, FAMILY MAN starring Nicolas Cage, LADDER 49 starring John Travolta and Joaquin Phoenix, THE GUARDIAN, starring Kevin Costner and Ashton Kutcher, CHILDREN OF MEN, starring Clive Owen, DAWN OF THE DEAD, directed by Zack Snyder, BRING IT ON starring Kirsten Dunst, OPEN RANGE starring Kevin Costner, Robert Duvall and Annette Bening, THIRTEEN DAYS starring Kevin Costner, A LOT LIKE LOVE starring Ashton Kutcher and Amanda Peet, RAISING HELEN starring Kate Hudson and John Corbett, FOR LOVE OF THE GAME starring Kevin Costner, FIREWALL starring Harrison Ford, Virginia Madsen and Paul Bettany, END OF DAYS starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, and THE WATERHORSE, directed by Jay Russell.
In television, Bernstein is the Executive Producer of the TNT series, AGENT X, starring Sharon Stone, Jeff Hephner, Gerald McRaney, and James Earl Jones, as well as the hit ABC series, CASTLE, now in its 8th season, starring Nathan Fillion and Stana Katic, and created by Andrew Marlowe, who wrote Air Force One and End of Days for Beacon.
Bernstein also produced the critically acclaimed Broadway musical, BRING IT ON, choreographed and directed by Andy Blankenbuehler, with music and lyrics by Amanda Greene, Lin-Manuel Miranda and Tom Kitt, and a book by Jeff Whitty. BRING IT ON was nominated for a Tony for Best Musical.
Bernstein has received many awards including being honored as Showest Producer of the Year, and winning the coveted USC Scripter Award for his screenplay The Hurricane.
He is also the founder and Chairman of the upcoming sports league, The People’s Games.
Bernstein founded Beacon Communications in 1990 with his college fraternity brother, Tom Rosenberg, who now has his own successful film company, Lakeshore Entertainment, which won an Academy Award for Best Picture for MILLION DOLLAR BABY.
Bernstein was also a partner with Charlie Lyons and the Ascent Entertainment Group which owned the Denver Nuggets, Colorado Avalanche, On-Command and Spectravision.
Other films produced by Bernstein and Beacon Pictures include THE COMMITMENTS, directed by Alan Parker, which was nominated for a Golden Globe Award as Best Picture and went on to win four BAFTA Awards; Keith Gordon’s critical triumph A MIDNIGHT CLEAR, starring Ethan Hawke; A THOUSAND ACRES, based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, starring Michelle Pfeifer and Jessica Lange; SUGAR HILL, starring Wesley Snipes; PLAYING GOD, starring David Duchovny and Angelina Jolie; PRINCESS CARABOO, starring Phoebe Cates and Kevin Kline; THE ROAD TO WELLVILLE, directed by Alan Parker and starring Anthony Hopkins, and David Mamet’s A LIFE IN THE THEATRE, which won a cable ACE Award for Best Drama.
Armyan was born and raised in Chicago, and attended the University of Wisconsin. He was a broadcast journalist with PBS and then with ABC. He wrote the cult classic THANK GOD IT’S FRIDAY, starring Debra Winger and Jeff Goldblum. He then wrote and co-produced Francis Ford Coppola’s legendary Vegas romance, ONE FROM THE HEART. Bernstein made his directing debut with WINDY CITY (a.ka. ALL THE SAD YOUNG MEN), from his screenplay, which starred John Shea and Kate Capshaw. He also co-wrote and directed CROSS MY HEART, starring Martin Short and Annette O’Toole. Armyan wrote and produced ABC’s Emmy Award–winning THE EARTH DAY SPECIAL.
It has been rumored that Armyan grew up a Chicago Cubs fan, and is said to have listened on the radio to over 100 Cubs losses one year…which is said to have had a profound influence on his philosophy of life.