For over 20 years, Lee Michael Cohn has held an international reputation as an acting teacher, coach, writer, and director. He recently wrote and directed the independent TV pilot Crime Share for Route 17 Productions. Lee was also the director and co-creator of Inside Private Lives, the hit theatrical show that was the LA Weekly Pick of the Week, recommended twice by LA Times, received a rave in NY Times, and out of over 2,000 shows placed in the Top 10 at The Edinburgh Theatre Festival.
Lee was chosen for the Warner Bros. Comedy Writers Workshop, Hollywood’s most prestigious showcase for new comedy writers, where he was one of 25 writers selected annually out of over 700 applicants. Lee is also co-author of “A Practical Handbook For The Actor,” the best-selling textbook (300,000 copies) that is required reading in hundreds of theatre programs and has been translated into Dutch, Japanese, Turkish, and Chinese. He has written plays, feature films, PSAs, corporate
industrial films and CD-ROMs, and among other projects, sold a TV pilot to a major
Russian TV network.
As a playwright, Lee is honored to have been Playwright-in-Residence at
Cal State Northridge in the Veterans Theatre Project for which he has received two grants to develop the story of The Bonus Army into a full-fledged theatrical production.
As an actor, Lee has worked professionally in film, TV and theatre, having originated
roles in plays by David Mamet, Roger Hedden, Jason Milligan and many others.
Appearances include Law & Order, the controversial 9/11 drama The Reflecting Pool,
Mamet’s martial arts film Redbelt, and many others.
Widely regarded as one of the country’s best acting teachers, Lee was profiled in
Qualified Acting Coaches: NY (Smith & Kraus). He has taught at the NYU Tisch School
of the Arts, The NYU School of Continuing and Professional Studies (Associate
Professor), The Atlantic Theater Company Acting School (Master Teacher), The New
World School of the Arts in Miami (Visiting Professor) and most recently at the new
Relativity School of Media, Film & the Performing Arts where he is an original faculty
member. Lee was selected for the two consecutive years to lecture at the annual Screen Actor’s Guild Conservatory Summer Seminar.
Lee was formerly and Executive Producer and Director of Development with Cinemagic Entertainment, and he is currently working as an Executive Producer with Riverrock Films, raising funds for several feature films starring A-List actors, all under $5 million.
Lee has also produced high-profile fundraising events at the home of director Brett Ratner for the Foundation For Ethnic Understanding (ffeu.org), raising millions of dollars for that organization. After 9/11, Lee also wrote nationally aired PSAs for FFEU starring Stevie Wonder, Russell Simmons, and others.
Lee holds a BFA in Drama from NYU/Tisch and also trained as an actor at the Drama Studio, London, where he was the youngest student ever admitted. He trained and worked professionally with David Mamet and was an original member of the Atlantic Theater Company. He also holds an MFA in Creative Writing and Writing for the Performing Arts (Screenwriting) from the University of California, Riverside.
Unique traits: 3rd Degree Black Belt, Ninjutsu; movie & music memorabilia collector (Star Wars, James Bond, vintage posters, anything Beatles and Led Zeppelin)
Society of British Fight Director's Award
Winner Best Film, One Hour Film Festival
Winner SF Fringe Festival (Best Comedy/Improv Show)
WB Comedy Writers Workshop alumnus
Voted Top 10 out of over 2,000 shows @ Edinburgh Theater Festival
2 Time Grant Winner, CSUN Veterans in Theatre Project
University of California-Riverside (Riverside, CA)
New York University (New York, NY)