Alexander Payne

Nominated For:



DIRECTOR: Nebraska


After receiving a sweepstakes letter in the mail, a cantankerous father (Bruce Dern) thinks he’s struck it rich, and wrangles his son (Will Forte) into taking a road trip to claim the fortune. Shot in black and white across four states, Nebraska tells the stories of family life in the heartland of America.



The grandson of Greek immigrants, ALEXANDER PAYNE grew up in Omaha, Nebraska, where he was educated by Jesuits. He later studied History and Spanish Literature at Stanford University before earning an MFA in Film Directing at UCLA.

His first two feature films were the comedies Citizen Ruth (1996) and Election (1999). About Schmidt premiered in competition at the Cannes Film Festival in 2002. Both Sideways (2004) and The Descendants (2011) won Oscars® for Best Adapted Screenplay and were nominated for four others, including Best Picture and Best Director. Four of his six feature films were filmed in Nebraska.