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Bryan Fogel

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Bryan Fogel
EducationEast High School (Denver)
Alma materUniversity of Colorado Boulder
Notable work
AwardsAcademy Award for Best Documentary Feature

Edward R. Murrow Award for Outstanding Journalism Sundance Grand Jury Award

BAFTA, DGA, EMMY Nominated

Bryan Fogel is an American film director, producer, author and playwright, best known for the 2017 documentary Icarus, which won an Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature at the 90th Academy Awards in 2018.

Early life and education[edit]

Fogel was born in Denver, Colorado. He graduated from East High School and the University of Colorado Boulder.[1]


Fogel began his career in Hollywood pursuing stand-up comedy and acting.[2] He had a small part in the 2009 Disney movie Race to Witch Mountain.[3]


Fogel developed, co-wrote, and initially starred in the play Jewtopia, an off-Broadway comedy about the dating lives of two young men seeking Jewish women, which was made into a feature film. The play opened in Los Angeles in 2003 and ran for 300 performances.[4] It moved on in 2004 to the off-Broadway Westside Theater in New York, where it ran for more than three years and over a thousand performances before closing in April 2007. It is one of the longest-running and fastest-recouping productions in Off-Broadway history.[5]

Fogel co-authored the book Jewtopia: The Chosen Guide for the Chosen People, with Sam Wolfson.[6] The book was published by Hachette Book Group and Fogel appeared on ABC's The View in support of the book.

Fogel directed, co-wrote and produced the feature film adaptation of Jewtopia which was released in 2013. The film had its U.S. premiere as the opening night gala of the 13th Newport Beach International Film Festival.[7][8] The film won the audience choice award of the 2012 Malibu International Film Festival.


While investigating the furtive world of illegal doping in sports, Fogel connected with renegade Russian scientist, Dr. Grigory Rodchenkov, a pillar of his country Russia’s state-sponsored Olympic doping program. Fogel and Rodchenkov realized they held the power to reveal the major doping in sports through The New York Times on May 12, 2016.[9] They alleged Russia had orchestrated state-sponsored fraud, conspiring to cheat the Olympics for decades, including the 2014 Sochi Olympics, where Rodchenkov, with the help of the Federal Security Service (formerly the KGB), changed steroid-tainted urine of the Russian national team to evade positive detection. This story, which Fogel had been documenting as a filmmaker for 3.5 years, working with producer Dan Cogan, is the foundation of his feature documentary film Icarus. Icarus premiered at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival[10] where it won the first ever Special Jury "Orwell Award"[11] and the first ever Audience Choice Award[12] at Sundance Film Festival London. The film was acquired in a historic $5 million sale to Netflix[13] and released worldwide on Netflix on August 4, 2017.[14]

In December 2017, Russia was suspended from participating in the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea under its flag, although it did send 169 athletes under the moniker "Olympic Athletes from Russia".[15] In August 2017, Fogel met with members of the US Congress and Senate to discuss the extent of Russian tampering in global affairs, specifically the 2016 US elections.[15]

Icarus won Best Documentary Feature at the 90th Academy Awards.

The film was also nominated for the Best Documentary Feature at the 71st BAFTAs, and Fogel was also nominated for outstanding directorial achievement at the 70th Directors Guild of America Awards, and three 2018 Primetime Emmy Awards for writing, directing and best documentary special.

Icarus also was awarded the 2018 Edward R. Murrow award for outstanding journalism for documentary.



  1. ^ "A busload of local actors make it big". 10 May 2007.
  2. ^ Thompson, Anne (2017-08-04). "How 'Icarus' Turned a Standup Comic Into an Investigative Journalist With a Netflix Deal". IndieWire. Retrieved 2017-12-06.
  3. ^ "Disney Movie Club - Disney movies on Blu-ray + DVD".
  4. ^ "Jewish Journal, January 23, 2004".
  5. ^ Playbill Archived June 5, 2011, at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^ "Choice of a Jew generation — Jewish Journal". 26 October 2006.
  7. ^ "Newport Beach film fest: 'Jewtopia,' John Wayne and lots more". 25 April 2012.
  8. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2015-02-25. Retrieved 2013-02-08.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  9. ^ Ruiz, Rebecca R.; Schwirtz, Michael (12 May 2016). "Russian Insider Says State-Run Doping Fueled Olympic Gold" – via
  10. ^ "icarus".
  11. ^ "'17 Sundance Film Festival - Award Winners". Archived from the original on 2017-10-27. Retrieved 2017-09-17.
  12. ^ "'Icarus' wins first ever Sundance London audience award".
  13. ^ Setoodeh, Brent Lang,Ramin (24 January 2017). "Sundance: Netflix Lands Russian Doping Documentary 'Icarus' (EXCLUSIVE)".
  14. ^ "Icarus - Netflix Official Site".
  15. ^ a b Yuan, Jada. "How Icarus Director Bryan Fogel Documented the Russian Olympic Doping Scandal". Vulture. Retrieved 2017-12-07.
  16. ^ Thorpe, Vanessa (22 February 2020). "Powerful new Khashoggi film hits its mark … but will audiences get to see it?". The Observer. ISSN 0029-7712. Retrieved 2020-02-22 – via
  17. ^ U.S, Steven Zeitchik closeSteven ZeitchikReporter covering the business of entertainment in the; beyondEmailEmailBioBioFollowFollow. "A Jamal Khashoggi documentary could take the film world — and U.S.-Saudi relations — by storm". Washington Post. Retrieved 2020-02-22.

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