Ivory, James (1928–) By Winter, Caroline
James Frances Ivory is an American film director and co-owner of Merchant Ivory Productions. He and his partner, Ismail Merchant, a film producer, formed Merchant Ivory in 1961, and they collaborated closely with Ruth Prawer Jhabvala, a novelist and screenwriter. Although Ivory directed a few films set in modern India and New York, he is best known for his adaptations of novels and short stories by writers including Henry James, E.M. Forster, Jean Rhys, John Cheever, and Jhabvala. He and Merchant Ivory are so strongly identified with the genre of period drama that these are sometimes referred to as “Merchant-Ivory films.”
Ivory has won numerous accolades, both for Merchant Ivory films and for his own work. For each of his films A Room with a View (1985), Howards End (1992), and The Remains of the Day (1993), he received Academy Award nominations for Best Director; Golden Globe nominations for Best Director, Motion Picture; and Directors Guild of America awards for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Motion Pictures. He won lifetime achievement awards from the Directors Guild of America in 1995, from the Savannah Film and Video Festival in 2000, and from Camerimage in 2003.