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Newton, Massachusetts
Birth Sign
Newton, Massachusetts

Eli Roth is an American director, writer, actor, and producer who is well-known for his controversial horror films such as “Hostel.” Born and raised in Massachusetts, USA, Eli’s interest in filmmaking dates back to his boyhood. Prior to reaching maturity, he had produced around one hundred short films with the assistance of his family and friends. Roth garnered attention with his student film, Restaurant Dogs, which was inspired by Quentin Tarantino’s Reservoir Dogs. His film won the Oscar for Best Student Film, paving the path for Roth to confidently enter the industry. Eli began his independent career after a few years of working for David Lynch. However, he was unable to secure sufficient funding for his feature-length script titled “Cabin Fever,” and thus decided to pursue acting. He made his acting debut in ‘The Horse Whisperer,’ and in 2002 he directed and published his first film, ‘Cabin Fever.’ The film achieved both critical and economic success. Influenced by the likes of David Lynch and certain Japanese gore films, he directed the 2005 and 2007 films “Hostel” and “Hostel 2” and went on to direct additional horror films. As an actor, his most notable part was as a supporting character in Quentin Tarantino’s World War II movie “Inglourious Basterds.”

Youth and Early Life

Eli Roth was born on 18 April 1972 in Massachusetts, the United States to a psychologist father and a painter mother. His father, Sheldon Roth, was a professor at Harvard Medical School, one of the most prestigious universities. The family’s financial stability allowed Eli to choose his profession without difficulty.

The artworks of his mother and her friends inspired him to pursue a career in the arts, but he found filmmaking more intriguing than painting or photography. Eli’s parents gave him a camera when he was a child, and he and his brothers Adam and Gabriel used it to create countless videos.

Other than David Lynch’s dystopian body horror picture ‘Eraserhead,’ Ridley Scott’s ‘Alien’ inspired Eli the most. By the time he graduated from high school, Eli had produced 100 amateur short films.

Eli attended New York’s Tisch School of the Arts for his higher education after graduating from Newton South High School. Eli continued to make short films, and to fund his projects, he began performing odd jobs. He was an operator for Penthouse Magazine and aided in the production of numerous films. After completing his education, he began working at Silvercup Studios.

While he worked during the day at the studio, he wrote his scripts at night. He would produce his short films whenever he could and on his days off. During this same period, he completed a screenplay named “Cabin Fever.” Around this time, his NYU student film Restaurant Dogs was well-received by the industry, earning him an Academy Award.

Her Early Profession

Eli relocated to Los Angeles and resided in the dressing area of actress Camryn Manheim. She became his close buddy after observing him diligently pursue his aspirations. She secured him a role as a background actor in the television series ‘The Practice,’ which introduced Eli to Hollywood. This inspired him to play supporting roles in several films, including ‘The Horse Whisperer’ and ‘Terror Firmer.’

Eli’s improved writing skills enabled him to obtain a position as a content developer for David Lynch’s website. He appreciated Lynch’s work as a filmmaker, and his proximity to Lynch aided him significantly in establishing his own filming approach.

He created a series of animated cartoons titled “Chowdaheads” in the late 1990s. The series was intended to be shown at WCW professional wrestling matches, but it was never made public. Eli made a new series of short animated shorts dubbed ‘The Rotten Fruit’ in the mid-2000s.

Eli Roth’s Career

Eli attempted to raise funds for the production of his script “Cabin Fever” throughout his early days in Hollywood, and in 2001, he was eventually successful.

The film was produced on a budget of $1.5 million and sold to Lionsgate for $3.5 million during the Toronto Film Festival. After getting outstanding reviews at the festival, Lionsgate distributed the film, which grossed $35 million at the box office.

This was Eli’s monumental debut as a director. However, it was difficult for him to attract producers for his second major picture, Hostel, which was a straightforward body horror thriller. In the interim, he appeared in supporting roles and cameos in films such as Tales from the Crapper and 2001 Maniacs.

In 2005, legendary filmmaker Quentin Tarantino came to his aid, and Eli’s second directorial project eventually went to production. Eli turned down several incredibly lucrative mainstream Hollywood opportunities in order to make the film. To keep the budget low, he only received $10,000 for directing the film.

The picture, which was produced on a modest budget of USD 4 million, grossed more than 40 times its budget and ushered in an entirely new subgenre of body horror. Torture porn is a new subgenre, according to experts.

Quentin Tarantino had previously stated that ‘Cabin Fever’ was his new favorite film, so he maintained contact with Eli. Eli was later asked to direct a portion of Quentin’s ‘Grindhouse’ film. Eli directed a part titled “Thanksgiving” that gained widespread popularity. Eli ultimately played a role in the picture.

“Hostel 2” was released in 2007 and was a box office triumph. However, it was unable to replicate the popularity of its predecessor. As ‘Hostel 2’ became the most downloaded film, piracy was the main reason for the picture’s lackluster result. Eli was nominated for Best Horror Film Director at the Spike TV Screams Awards, and Entertainment Weekly named it one of the “20 Best Horror Films of the Past Two Decades.”

The 2009 film ‘Inglorious Basterds’ was Eli’s breakout performance as an actor. He portrayed Donny “The Bear Jew” Donowitz, who murders Nazi troops with a baseball bat. The film follows an American crew stranded in Nazi-occupied France during the height of World War II.

The film was a massive success, and Eli went on to play guest roles and write screenplays for several movies. However, he showed little interest in an acting career or one that required him to helm conventional Hollywood films. He often turned down opportunities to helm high-paying, high-budget pictures.

Eli returned in 2013 as a writer and director for the horror film ‘The Green Inferno,’ which was inspired by legendary films such as ‘Cannibal Holocaust’ Eli remarked that it was one of the best pictures he’s ever produced or would ever make, despite the film’s opening to bad reviews.

This time, he was supported by Hollywood icon Keanu Reeves, who not only featured in the picture but also served as an executive producer.

Eli’s Personal Life

Eli Roth dated Lorenza Izzo, a Chilean actress, and model, for many years before their 2014 marriage.
Eli Roth is one of the most controversial directors in Hollywood history, yet his films are profitable.

As a result, he continues to get sufficient funds for his endeavors. An uncommon quality in Hollywood, he works actively as a director and writer to make the films he wants to make.

Estimated Net Worth

Filmmaker, actor, and author Eli Roth has a net worth of $20 million. “Cabin Fever” and “Hostel” are two of Eli Roth’s most well-known horror films.

As an actor, he has acted in films such as “Inglourious Basterds” and “Aftershock.” Roth directed the remake of the action picture “Death Wish” and the fantasy film “The House with a Clock in Its Walls” outside of the horror genre.