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Adi Shankar
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Shankar at the 2013 San Diego Comic-Con
Aditya Shankar

(1985-01-08) 8 January 1985 (age 39)
Nationality American
Occupation Producer
Years active 2010–present

Aditya Shankar (born January 8, 1985) is an American film producer, screenwriter, film director, television program creator, television showrunner, and occasional actor. He is best known for Dredd, Castlevania, and his "Bootleg Universe" One-Shot series of fan films. He is the youngest producer to have a number one film at the North American box office with The Grey.

In 2014, Shankar ranked number 20 on GQ magazine's list of "Most Influential Global Indian Men". He co-founded the production company 1984 Private Defense Contractors.

Early life

Aditya Shankar was born in Kolkata, West Bengal, India, to a banking executive and an educator. His family spent his formative years relocating among Chennai, Mumbai, Hong Kong, and Singapore. He immigrated to Rhode Island, USA by himself at the age of 15 two days before 9/11. Shankar studied communications, business, and theater at Northwestern University and graduated in June 2007.


His Bootleg satires include The Punisher: Dirty Laundry, Venom: Truth in Journalism, and Power/Rangers.

In 2015, upon signing a three-picture deal with Disney's Maker Studios, Shankar was proclaimed the "Quentin Tarantino of the digital generation" by Maker executives.


For his controversial "Bootleg Universe" Shankar cites British street artist Banksy as a major influence. In addition, Shankar frequently cites rapper Eminem, writer Warren Ellis, artist Takashi Murakami, wrestler Diamond Dallas Page, and Final Fantasy VII character Sephiroth as artistic and stylistic influences.

"The Apu problem"

In April 2018, Shankar started a script contest which he hoped would encourage people to rewrite The Simpsons character Apu Nahasapeemapetilon "that takes the character of Apu and in a clever way subverts him, pivots him, intelligently writes him out, or evolves him". He stated that, in the event that the show's producers will not take on the winning script, he would produce and distribute the episode as part of his, "Bootleg Universe" fan films.

On October 26, 2018, Shankar leaked during an interview with IndieWire that Apu was going to be written out of the show, stating that he got the information from two people who work for The Simpsons and a third source who works directly with creator Matt Groening. A representative for the show at Fox responded, saying, "Apu appeared in the 10/14/18 episode My Way or the Highway to Heaven." In the episode, Apu makes an appearance as one of dozens of characters gathered around God in Heaven. On October 28, Simpsons executive producer and show runner Al Jean responded on Twitter by saying "Adi Shankar is not a producer on the Simpsons. I wish him the best but he does not speak for our show."



Year Title Role Studio/Distributor Notes
2010 Main Street Executive Producer Magnolia Pictures
2011 Machine Gun Preacher Relativity Media
The Grey Open Road
2012 Dredd Lionsgate
Killing Them Softly The Weinstein Company
Gangs of Wasseypur Cinelicious Pics Shankar also Presented the international release.
2013 Broken City 20th Century Studios
Lone Survivor Universal Pictures
2014 The Voices Producer Lionsgate
A Walk Among the Tombstones Executive Producer Universal Pictures
2017 Bodied Producer Neon


Year Title Role Distributor Notes
2017–2021 Castlevania Showrunner
Executive producer
Netflix Ended
2022 The Guardians of Justice Creator
Executive producer
2023 Castlevania: Nocturne Executive Producer
2023 Captain Laserhawk: A Blood Dragon Remix Creator
Executive producer
Voice actor
Story Writer
2024 Devil May Cry Creator
Executive producer
Story Writer
TBA Assassin's Creed Executive producer
TBA Hyper Light Drifter Executive producer TBA
TBA PUBG Creator
Executive producer

"Bootleg Universe" One-Shot Films

Year Title Length Genre Notes
2012 The Punisher: Dirty Laundry 9 min 50 seconds Action/Crime Thomas Jane reprises his role as Marvel anti-hero Frank Castle aka the Punisher from the 2004 film.
2013 Venom: Truth in Journalism 17 min 8 seconds Crime/Comedy In a black and white homage to cult Belgian black comedy Man Bites Dog and set in the late 1980s, Ryan Kwanten stars as Spider-Man's nemesis Eddie Brock / Venom as he is followed around by a documentary film crew. In a post-credits sequence, Shankar portrays rival documentary video director Sunil Bakshi, who is similarly following around the assassin Ben / Bullseye and filming him execute people.
2014 Judge Dredd: Superfiend 26 min 32 seconds Action/Comedy An animated re-interpretation of Judge Dredd in the form of a violent Saturday morning cartoon. Does not take place in the continuity of the Shankar produced 2012 Judge Dredd film Dredd.
2015 Power/Rangers 11 min 45 seconds Action/Sci-Fi A dark reimagining of the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers that explores a timeline where the Rangers lost, starring James Van Der Beek and Katee Sackhoff, with Carla Perez reprising her role as Rita Repulsa from various Power Rangers series from 1994 to 1998.
James Bond: In Service of Nothing 10 min 55 seconds Spy/Action An animated short film in the style of a film animatic, where after 30 years in the agency, James Bond is no longer required for his services leading to his retirement as he tries adjust himself to a new life in the present.
2018 Mr. Rogers: A War Hero 14 min 06 seconds Biopic A "What if?" scenario based on the longstanding rumor where Fred Rogers served in the Vietnam War and based several characters on Mister Rogers' Neighborhood from his wartime comrades
2019 The End of Pokemon 5 min 25 seconds Action/Thriller An animated fake trailer for a dark epilogue to the Pokémon anime series.

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Adi Shankar para niños

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