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R. J. Daniel Hanna Headshot.jpg

Maybe it was growing up in Arkansas as a Canadian, or the summers in rural Ireland with grandparents and extended family, but Daniel has always been drawn to out-of-place characters, unique environments, and the weird, beautiful rhythms of how people talk. As a writer/director, he explores these interests across a range of genres, while always keeping a focus on human issues and the complicated people living them, as well as the hope and humor they find in even the darkest circumstances. He recently directed the true-story feature film "Miss Virginia," starring Emmy-winner Uzo Aduba, Matthew Modine, and Vanessa Williams. The film was listed as a New York Times and USA Today Must-See Fall Movie, won the Audience Award at The Naples Film Festival, and received a limited theatrical release, cable premiere on BET, and streaming deal with Netflix. In addition to being a finalist for The Academy's Nicholl Fellowship for Screenwriting, he was a winner in the Slamdance, ScriptPipeline, and Screencraft competitions for his social-issue-horror script "They Live on Skid Row," chronicling a teen girl's struggle with homelessness via a rip-roaring zombie film. Daniel also explores storytelling as an editor, with ten features under his belt, including horror film "What Lies Below," which quickly became #1 on Netflix, and the upcoming storm-chasing movie "Supercell" starring Alec Baldwin. He hopes to continue telling cinematic, character-driven stories long past the time any sane person would have retired.

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"Miss Virginia" 

Audience Award, Naples Film Festival 


Audience Award, Arkansas Cinema Society

Best Narrative Short, Fayetteville Film Festival

Excellence in Filmmaking, Anthem Film Festival

2015 Most Voted Film, The Audience Awards


"Shelter Animal"

Finalist, The Academy Nicholl Fellowship

"They Live on Skid Row" 

Best Horror Feature (3rd), Slamdance

Best Horror Feature, ScreenCraft 

Finalist, Script Pipeline

"Snuff Film"

Best Comedy Feature (2nd), Screencraft

Finalist, Austin Film Festival

"Satan In Arkansas City"

Finalist, Script Pipeline

Semi-Finalist, The Academy Nicholl Fellowship

Semi-Finalist, Austin Film Festival

Semi-Finalist, Enderby Entertainment Award



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