Robert Rodriguez is a film director, screenwriter, producer, cinematographer, editor and musician. He is also the Founder and Chairman of El Rey Network, a 24-hour, English-language lifestyle network.
While a student at the University of Texas at Austin in 1991, Robert Rodriguez wrote the script to his first feature film while sequestered at a drug research facility as a paid subject in a clinical experiment. That paycheck covered the cost of shooting his film. He planned to make the money back by selling the film to the Mexican home video market.
The film, El Mariachi, went on to win the coveted Audience Award at the 1993 Sundance Film Festival, and became the lowest budget movie ever released by a major studio. Rodriguez wrote about these experiences in Rebel Without a Crew, a perennial guide for the independent filmmaker.
Rodriguez went on to write, produce, direct and edit a series of successful films including Desperado, From Dusk Till Dawn, The Faculty, the Spy Kids franchise, Once Upon a Time in Mexico, Frank Miller’s Sin City, The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl in 3D, Grindhouse, Machete and Sin City 2: A Dame To Kill For.
In 2000, Rodriguez founded Troublemaker Studios, an Austin, Texas based production facility of which he is co-owner and president. The studio includes a world-renowned visual effects house, music and publishing arms and has played a primary role in making Austin a vibrant filmmaking hub.
In 2012, Rodriguez created El Rey Network, a 24-hour English language television network. Curated by Rodriguez and his artistic collective, the network launched in 2014 and is now in millions of homes nationwide. In 2018 El Rey Network partnered with Vice Media to form a hybrid creative agency and studio called La Reyna.
In 2016 Rodriguez embarked on a collaboration with iconic film director James Cameron on the film adaptation of Alita: Battle Angel which Cameron is producing alongside Rodriguez directing. The film premiered theatrically February 14, 2019.
To commemorate the 25th anniversary of El Mariachi Rodriguez went back to his roots and launched a docu-series for El Rey Network in which he invited 5 filmmakers to make a feature film for only 7000 dollars and 14 days to shoot called Rebel without a Crew. In addition to the series, he also challenged himself to make a feature film under the same constraints, that film is titled Red 11. Red 11 production was also documented for a 6-part docu-series featuring Rodriguez and his son Racer making the film called Rebel without a Crew: The Robert Rodriguez Film School. Red 11 and a sneak preview of the docu-series had its world premiere at SXSW in March of 2019
In 2017 Rodriguez, alongside his sons Racer and Rebel, formed Double R Productions, a development and production company with capabilities to produce media projects across film, television, gaming and interactive platforms. In addition to Red 11, Double R produced a state of the art VR live-action short called the The Limit starring Michelle Rodriguez.
He resides in Austin, Texas.