Alex Ranarivelo - a prolific, visual, and collaborative storyteller - has directed four feature films for ESX Entertainment* since June, 2014 ("The Dog Lover", "American Wrestler", "Running Wild" & "Pray for Rain"). He graduated at the top of his class with a B.F.A in film production from Art Center College of Design. His thesis film was a 35mm short film about street racing called "The Last Race", based on his experiences as a street-racer.
After college he continued to develop his writing and directing skills with 5 more short films in different genres, each playing in festivals and winning multiple awards. He made his feature debut with a rough-and-tumble romantic comedy from a guy’s perspective: "Alpha Males Experiment" (aka "Knuckle Draggers"). It played at multiple festivals and placed in Best of Fest’s top 10 Comedies of the year. In 2010, Alex’s script “The Girl With No Name” won the GRAND PRIZE at the Slamdance Film Festival Screenwriting Competition and was subsequently optioned by Co-Op Entertainment. The script also placed in the top 35 out of 3500 scripts in Final Draft’s Big Break Competition.
Alex went back to his street-racing roots for his second feature "Born To Race", a teen action film centered around a father/son story. He co-wrote the script and was hired to direct it. Born To Race was a hit domestically and internationally in the home video market. A rip of the movie showed up on YouTube and got over 7 MILLION VIEWS before being taken down. Alex also directed the sequel, "Born To Race: Fast Track", starring Brett Davern and Beau Mirchoff of MTV's "Awkward."
When producer Ali Afshar first teamed up with executive producer Forest Lucas to create ESX Entertainment, Alex was brought on to direct their first film, the suspenseful, character-driven "The Dog Lover" (starring James Remar, Lea Thompson, and Sherry Stringfield). The film is now set for domestic release through Sony Pictures in July 2016.
While in postproduction on this film, Alex began prepping "American Wrestler" (aka "The Wizard") which follows a 17 year-old Iranian refugee who becomes the high school wrestling champion against adversity during the Iran hostage crisis of 1980. In this period piece, he directed Jon Voight, William Fichtner and discovered newcomers George Kosturos and Lia Marie Johnson. The film premiered at the 2016 Newport Beach Film Festival, and is set for wide release in October.
Next came "Running Wild", where Alex was at the helm of a picturesque, dramatic piece about Stella, a California Ranch Socialite poised to lose everything who creates a Prison Rehabilitation Equine Program after finding starving wild horses on her property. Dorian Brown and Jason Lewis must go head to head with animal lover Sharon Stone. Tommy Flanagan also stars.
In October of 2015, Alex directed Jane Seymour and Paul Rodriguez in Praying for Rain, a murder mystery set against the backdrop of the Central California drought. A young girl begins to investigate the suspicious circumstances surrounding her father’s death and discovers that the idyllic farm community of her youth has been replaced by crime and desperation. Newcomer Annabelle Stephenson leads the cast. Nicholas Gonzalez also stars.
Last but not least, Alex has just wrapped production on "Dirt". His 5th movie in a row with ESX Entertainment. Dirt is about a weathered race team owner (Kevin Dillon) who can’t quite get his team to gel when he is asked to take on a kid from the hood that needs a work furlough to avoid jail time. He reluctantly agrees and the unlikely pair create quite a stir in the redneck sport of short course off road truck racing.