The indie film-making with attempted Einstein-tribute hair is from Akron, Ohio. He was briefly enrolled as a journalism student at Northwestern, before dropping out. He graduated from Columbia in ‘75 with a B.A. in English. He was subsequently accepted to Tisch School of the Arts at NYU, with no prior film making experience.
After putting in his dues
slaving working as an assistant on various film sets, he arrived on the scene with 1984's Stranger than Paradise. Although he hasn't achieved nearly as much acclaim since then, he's directed half a dozen films in the intervening years, including Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai, Coffee and Cigarettes, and Broken Flowers.
Often credited with the founding of the American indie film movement, Jarmusch's films are typically characterized as "minimalist" and "unhurried" (resist reading: boring). They often revolve around foreigners experiences in America, and, bucking the Hollywood convention of having foreigners speak English in a British accent, sometimes containing a substantial amount of dialogue not in English.
He splits his time between New York City and the Catskills, where he, you know, contemplates life and smokes.
[Image via Gerry]