Daniel Knauf – Guest of Honor

danielknaufBorn and raised in Los Angeles, Knauf attended several colleges in South California studying fine art, and later graduated from the California State University, Los Angeles with a bachelor’s degree in English in 1982.[1] He began work as an employee benefits consultant and later a health insurance broker, writing once he was able to support himself and his family financially.[2][1] Hoping to become a screenwriter, Knauf’s first script was a draft of Carnivàle, written in 1992,[3] 180 pages long and twice the length of the average feature film.[2] Convinced the screenplay could not work as either a standard television series or a film, he put it aside, planning to one day adapt it into a novel.[3] Carnivàle evolved as a result of Knauf’s childhood fascination with carnivals and his interest in “freaks”, due in part to the childhood polio that confined his father to a wheelchair, which Knauf felt his father was defined by.[3][2] After meeting with a number of television writers at a Writers Guild of America retreat in the mid-90s, he started to think that his screenplay might work as a television piece. He took the first act and reworked it as a television pilot, but shelved the script again when he could not get the project produced.[2]

Knauf went on to write the 1994 HBO-produced television movie Blind Justice,[4] and, during a low-point in his screenwriting career, created his own website, posting his resume and Carnivàle‘s first act online.[2] He created the 2001 television pilot Honey Vicarro and wrote, produced and directed for the television series Wolf Lake and feature film Dark Descent[1] before a television production scout brought Carnivàle to television producers Scott Winant and Howard Klein, who brought it to HBO where the series ended up being produced,[4] twelve years after Knauf had first drafted the script.[2]

Since Carnivàle was cancelled in 2005, Knauf has moved on to write for television series Supernatural and Standoff also serving as a co-executive producer on Standoff. He worked as a writer for the Christian Slater drama My Own Worst Enemy in 2008.

He and his son Charles Knauf have written issues 7-18 and 21-28 of Iron Man for Marvel Comics,[5] as well as volume #2 of The Eternals since its 2006 revival after over thirty years.[6][7] He will also write a Captain America Theater of War: Zero-Point story set during World War II, and has submitted a draft to Sci Fi Channel for an adaptation of The Phantom.

He was a consulting producer for the latter part of the first season of historical action drama Spartacus: Blood and Sand. Knauf wrote two episodes for the first season. Knauf co-wrote with Andrea Berloff and Caleb Pinkett the script for the upcoming mystery thriller The Legend of Cain.[8]

On September 28, 2010, it was announced that Knauf will be writing the HBO/BBC America mini-series, Year Zero, based on the concept album by Nine Inch Nails front man Trent Reznor.

Knauf is a writer and Executive Producer on the current hit series The Black List.