Biography

Independent filmmaker Victor Nunez creates high-quality, memorable portraits of life in his native Northern Florida. Among mainstream filmgoers, Nunez is best known for directing Ulee's Gold, a potent relationship drama in which Peter Fonda gives his finest performance since Easy Rider (1969). Fonda received an Oscar nomination and a Golden Globe award for his performance. A founding member of the Independent Feature Project board, Nunez holds degrees in film and film production from Antioch College and U.C.L.A. After obtaining his master's degree from the latter school, he gained experience making short educational and industrial films. He also made three fictional short films. In 1979, he made his feature film debut with Gal Young Un; set in 1920s Florida, it was the tale of a miserable but wealthy farm widow, her new, younger spouse, and his girlfriend. That year, it was designated Best First Feature at the Chicago Film Festival and was a co-recipient of the USA/Park City Film Festival Best Feature Award. Nunez's sophomore film, A Flash of Green, was based on a novel by John D. MacDonald and, unlike his first film, featured a bigger budget and a name cast that included Ed Harris, Richard Jordan, and Blair Brown. Set in a small, Florida seaside town, the story followed a reporter's investigation of a fishy landfill deal. His third film, Ruby in Paradise, was Ashley Judd's feature debut and chronicled a young Florida woman's attempt to overcome personal and financial adversity. The film (like his other two) was chosen for screening at the Cannes Film Festival Directors Fortnight. It also played at the New York Film Festival and won the Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival. Nunez is a founding member and serves on the boards of the Independent Feature Project and the Sundance Film Institute. Between 1983 and 1986, he served on the selection panels of the NEA, CPB, and the Florida Fine Arts Council. ~ Sandra Brennan, Rovi