Critical praise for director John Crowley's productions of complex plays by Martin McDonagh and Harold Pinter led to a second career as a filmmaker on such thoughtful and often dark features as "Boy A" (2007), "Is Anybody There?" (2008) and "Brooklyn" (2015). Born Aug. 19, 1969 in Cork, Ireland, Crowley earned his bachelor's degree in English and Philosophy and a master's degree in Philosophy from University College Cork, where he also became interested in theater. He soon began directing plays in Dublin and London before forging relationships with such celebrated theater companies as the Donmar Warehouse and Royal Shakespeare Company in the late '90s. Crowley made his film directorial debut in 2000 with an adaptation of Samuel Beckett's "Come and Go" for "Beckett on Film," a series of screen versions of the playwright's works for RTE, Channel 4 and the Irish Film Board. In 2003, he made his first feature film, "Intermission," a black comedy with interlacing storylines about figures on both sides of the law; that same year, he directed the London production of Martin McDonagh's "The Pillowman," and brought the production to Broadway for its Tony-nominated run in 2005. Crowley continued to remain active in English theater while also honing his screen career with an adaptation of Harold Pinter's "The Celebration" (More4, 2007), with Michael Gambon, Colin Firth and Sophie Okonedo, and the crime drama "Boy A," which earned him and star Andrew Garfield 2008 BAFTA TV Awards. Crowley then directed Michael Caine in the introspective drama "Is Anybody There?" before returning to Broadway for "A Steady Rain" (2009), a two-person drama with Daniel Craig and Hugh Jackman that earned blockbuster ticket sales, and then McDonagh's black comedy "A Behanding in Spokane" (2010), starring Christopher Walken and Sam Rockwell. His next feature, "Closed Circuit" (2013), with Eric Bana and Rebecca Hall, drew mixed reviews, but his next screen effort, "Brooklyn," with Saoirse Ronan as an Irish immigrant in 1950s New York, received excellent reviews and was selected for the Special Presentations section of the 2015 Toronto International Film Festival.