James Allan Schamus is an American Academy Award nominated, BAFTA Award winning film producer and screenwriter, noted for his work on critically acclaimed independent films such as Safe, The Brothers McMullen and the Academy Award winning film Brokeback Mountain. He is perhaps best known, however, for his longtime collaboration with writer/director Ang Lee, with whom he co-wrote and produced such films as Eat Drink Man Woman, The Ice Storm, and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. This partnership is notable for having produced eight feature films, no two of which are alike in terms of story.
Schamus is also a published film historian, and currently holds a faculty position at Columbia University. He is currently the head of the film company Focus Features.
He attended the University of California, Berkeley, where he earned his bachelor's degree (1982), master's degree (1987), and PhD (2003), all in English.
Friends, acquaintances, and even rivals sometimes refer to him as James James, Schamus Schamus, or Seamus Seamus because his first and last names are etymological cognates.