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Ellen Simon

Ellen Simon

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Also Known As: Died:
Born: Cause of Death:
Birth Place: New York City, New York, USA Profession: screenwriter, playwright, choreographer

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

One might assume that being the daughter of one of the most famous playwrights and screenwriters in American history would have its perks, but for Ellen Simon, there was also a great deal of emotional trauma and pain. Her mother, Joan, a former dancer, died of bone cancer when Simon was 16. Searching for a spiritual center, Simon went to India in 1977, and returned with John Leland, a media consultant who was to become her first husband, and a desire to become a choreographer. After her marriage failed, Simon moved to Nyack, NY where she met astrophysicist Jeff Bishop. The two married in 1984 and relocated to Toronto where Bishop was pursuing studies. While living in Canada, Simon began to write scripts. Three months after she and Bishop returned to Nyack in 1987, Bishop was struck and killed by a car while jogging. Simon's family and friends helped her through the grieving process. She used the experience as the basis for a play, "Moonlight and Valentino", which was produced at a new playwrights festival at Duke University. An agent suggested that Simon turn the play into a feature. It took her several years to get around to it, but "Moonlight & Valentino" was sold to Working Title Films for...

One might assume that being the daughter of one of the most famous playwrights and screenwriters in American history would have its perks, but for Ellen Simon, there was also a great deal of emotional trauma and pain. Her mother, Joan, a former dancer, died of bone cancer when Simon was 16. Searching for a spiritual center, Simon went to India in 1977, and returned with John Leland, a media consultant who was to become her first husband, and a desire to become a choreographer. After her marriage failed, Simon moved to Nyack, NY where she met astrophysicist Jeff Bishop. The two married in 1984 and relocated to Toronto where Bishop was pursuing studies. While living in Canada, Simon began to write scripts. Three months after she and Bishop returned to Nyack in 1987, Bishop was struck and killed by a car while jogging. Simon's family and friends helped her through the grieving process. She used the experience as the basis for a play, "Moonlight and Valentino", which was produced at a new playwrights festival at Duke University. An agent suggested that Simon turn the play into a feature. It took her several years to get around to it, but "Moonlight & Valentino" was sold to Working Title Films for $500,000 in 1992, and released as a motion picture starring Elizabeth Perkins, Whoopi Goldberg, Kathleen Turner and Jon Bon Jovi in 1995. She also scripted the romantic comedy "One Fine Day" which stars Michelle Pfeiffer as a single mother romanced by George Clooney (1996).

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Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

:
Raised in NYC
1977:
Travelled to India; met first husband
1983:
Moved to Nyack, NY; met second husband
1984:
Relocated to Toronto with husband; began writing
1987:
While jogging, second husband struck by car and killed
1989:
Stage play "Moonlight and Valentino" premiered at the Duke University New Playwrights Festival
1995:
Screen adapation of "Moonlight and Valentino" starring Elizabeth Perkins, Whoopi Goldberg and Kathleen Turner released
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Notes

"Ellen's found her voice. Her life is fully her own."-- Marsha Mason, People, October 9, 1995.

"People say the apple doesn't fall far from the tree. Well, Ellen is her own tree." --Neil Simon, People, October 9, 1995.

Companions close complete companion listing

husband:
John Leland. Media consultant. Married 1979 in Hindu ceremony; divorced 1982.
husband:
Jeff Bishop. Astrophysicist. Married 1984; killed in jogging accident November 13, 1987.
husband:
Michael Florimbi. Film technician; poet. Married in 1992 by Muskogee-Cree medicine man; brother David is married to Simon's sister Nancy.

Family close complete family listing

father:
Neil Simon. Playwright, screenwriter, author. Born July 4, 1927.
mother:
Joan Baim Simon. Dancer. Born 1932, died of bone cancer, 1973.
step-mother:
Marsha Mason. Actor. Born 1942; four-time Academy Award nominee, married to Neil Simon from 1973-1982.
sister:
Nancy Simon. Writer. Younger; born 1963; married to painter David Florimbi.
son:
Andrew Leland. Born 1981.
daughter:
Nicola Florimbi. Born 1994.
VIEW COMPLETE FAMILY LISTING

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