John Samuel Waters Jr. (born April 22, 1946) is an American filmmaker, writer, actor, and artist. Born and raised in Baltimore, Waters rose to prominence in the early 1970s for his transgressive cult films, including Multiple Maniacs (1970), Pink Flamingos (1972), and Female Trouble (1974). He wrote and directed the 1988 film Hairspray which became an international success and turned into a hit Broadway musical which has remained in almost continuous production. Waters has written and directed other successful films, including Polyester (1981), Cry-Baby (1990), Serial Mom (1994), Pecker (1998), and Cecil B. Demented (2000).
As an actor, Waters has appeared in films such as Sweet and Lowdown (1999), Seed of Chucky (2004), Excision (2012), and Suburban Gothic (2014). His television work includes ‘Til Death Do Us Part (2006-2007) and John Waters Presents Movies That Will Corrupt You (2006). More recently, Waters performs in his touring one-man show This Filthy World. He has often worked with actor Divine, and his regular cast of the Dreamlanders.
In addition to film making and acting, Waters also works as a visual artist and across different mediums such as installations, photography, and sculpture. He has published multiple collections of his journalistic exploits, screenplays, ruminations and artwork. Waters’ artwork exhibits regularly in galleries and museums around the world. In 2015, Waters was nominated for a Grammy Award for the spoken word version of his book Carsick.
Books in order of publication:
|Shock Value: A Tasteful Book About Bad Taste||1981|
|Crackpot: The Obsessions of John Waters||1986|
|Trash Trio: Three Screenplays||1988|
|Art: A Sex Book||2003|
|John Waters: Change of Life||2004|
|Three More Screenplays: Hairspray / Female Trouble / Multiple Maniacs||2005|
|The Everything Enneagram Book: Identify Your Type, Gain Insight into Your Personality and Find Success in Life, Love, and Business||2007|
|Carsick: John Waters Hitchhikes Across America||2014|
|Mind Power: The Never Revealed Secret Ways To Achieve Greatness Using Mind Mastery And Neuroplasticity||2015|
|Tom of Finland||2016|
|It Wasn’t Work: A memoir written by John Waters of his working life||2018|
|Mr. Know-It-All: The Tarnished Wisdom of a Filth Elder||2019|