Benjamin Harold “Benh” Zeitlin (born October 14, 1982)2 is an American filmmaker, and a composer and animator.
Zeitlin was born in Manhattan and raised in Sunnyside, Queens, New York City, and in the suburbs of Hastings-on-Hudson, NY. He is a graduate of Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut. He was born to folklorists Mary Amanda Dargan and Steven Joel “Steve” Zeitlin, who founded City Lore in New York City. His father is Jewish, and his mother, who is from Darlington, South Carolina, comes from a Protestant background.
In 2004, he cofounded the Court 13 independent collection of filmmakers, named after a neglected Wesleyan U. squash court that Zeitlin and his friends used as a filming site. He moved to New Orleans while making his first short film, Glory at Sea, in 2008.
In 2012, his first feature, Beasts of the Southern Wild, won the Caméra d’Or award at the Cannes Film Festival, the Grand Jury Prize: Dramatic at the Sundance… read more