Joel Souza is an American filmmaker, writer and director. He is best known for writing and directing the 2019 American action film Crown Vic. On Oct. 21, 2021, he was accidentally shot by actor Alec Baldwin on the set of his film Rust. The film’s director of photography Halyna Hutchins was killed by the same bullet. Baldwin said he had “no words” to express his grief. 


Souza was born on June 14, 1973, in Fremont, California (Joel Souza Age: 48). He and his wife share two kids. The family currently lives in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Souza wrote and directed his first film, Hanna’s Gold, in 2010. The film is a family-adventure story starring Luke Perry alongside Morissa O’Mara. Souza directed his next film, Ghost Squad, in 2015. Also in 2015, Souza directed the film Christmas Trade starring William Baldwin, Denise Richards and Michael Campion.

Souza’s next big project was Crown Vic in 2019, which he directed and wrote the screenplay for. The movie follows LAPD officer Ray Mandel as he attempts to hunt down two cop killers on the loose. The film stars Thomas Jane and Josh Hopkins and was produced by Alec Baldwin.

Souza’s sixth film, Rust, is currently in production. The film stars Alec Baldwin as the notorious outlaw Harlan Rust. Production was halted on October 21, 2021, due to Baldwin’s accidental live discharge of a prop gun resulting in the death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins and the serious injuring of Souza himself.


In April 2019, Souza spoke exclusively with uInterview about his debut feature film, Crown Vic.

Crown Vic, which was produced by Alec Baldwin, premiered in December 2019.

Souza spoke about why several of his films have centered around police.

“I’m sort of obsessive about writing cops,” he said. “I love it. There’s a real sort of shop talk and the jargon, and there’s a very sort of specific way they speak, and that either rolls off your tongue or it doesn’t.”

He also spoke about the experience of directing a film and dealing with improvisations or slight changes during filming.

“The best thing is when… you write your script and you make your plan, but it’s the thing you didn’t anticipate – that knee thing that happens that somebody thought of that wasn’t yours, that just makes a scene way better. There’s a lot of that [in the film]… that was really gratifying.”

Watch the full interview at the top of the page.

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