Adam Rifkin

Refused admission to a variety of film schools, writer-director Adam Rifkin moved to Los Angeles to try his luck amidst the professional ranks of filmmaking. Struggling to make ends meet as a cartoonist for greeting-card companies and local publications, he finally attracted the attention of youthful producer Brad Wyman with his script for the decidedly off-beat "The Dark Backward" (1991), about a failing comedian whose career takes off when he grows a third arm out of his back, which would eventually become his first feature to get a theatrical release. Prior to directing it, he wrote and helmed "Never on Tuesday" and "Tale of Two Sisters" (both 1989), working with actors like Charlie Sheen, Peter Berg, Nicolas Cage and Claudia Christian, among others, and receiving praise for his handling of varied film techniques, though neither film had a prayer of attracting anything but a cult audience. Reteaming with Sheen, writer-director Rifkin proved with "The Chase" (1994) that he was not just about circus freaks, and TV offered him the chance to work in the genres of sci-fi (as supervising producer on USA Network's "The Swamp Thing" 1990-93) and horror (as creator and co-executive producer of ABC's "Bone Chillers" 1996-97).