John Sparano


     John Sparano was born in Norristown, PA. In his senior year in high school he landed his first professional acting job in the movie, “Taps,” where he spent two months training and acting with, Tom Cruise, Sean Penn, and Timothy Hutton.  After two and half years at the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C., he moved to Los Angeles where he graduated from California State University at Northridge with a B.A. in Theatre Arts. 

     Over the next ten years he directed over 25 Equity Waiver plays in Los Angeles, including the multi-award winning “Deathtrap” with a then unknown Steve Valentine, who went on to star in “Crossing Jordan”, and now renowned casting director, Joseph Middleton. After the success of several other critically acclaimed plays, and an Equity tour of “The Taming of The Shrew,” he made his first film, “Peter,” about an unsuspecting businessman who is followed around by a camera crew in order to create a film about him.  That film was shot in 1994, well before today’s current reality TV phenomenon, and subsequent films about it, (The Truman Show, EdTV).  

"Peter" was lauded by Pulitzer Prize winning television critic Howard Rosenberg in an article in the LA Times. Rosenberg also had Sparano as a guest lecturer in his television critique class at USC. The success of “Peter” helped Sparano produce his first feature, which he also wrote and directed, “Forgiving Winona,” about an actress obsessed with the life and career of Winona Ryder.  That film is currently a cult favorite on the college film circuit through Screening Room Entertainment.  

      “Reality School,” a short about a school started to teach reality TV contestants to be better actors, screened all over the United States in 2002 and premiered in Europe in Montecatini, Italy, and London, England.  The film was picked up by Shorts International and has been playing in various theatrical and television outlets since 2003.  Illuminare Entertainment produced a pilot version of the short retaining Sparano as writer and director.  His screenplay, “What You Can Do For Your Country” was a Nichol semifinalist and currently under option with Roberts/David Films.  His latest screenplay, “The Stocking Walls” was first optioned in 2005 by Kintop Films, the company behind, “Bend It Like Beckham”, and is currently being developed by Supearlative Productions.

     His latest short, the Italian language film “Due,” winner of The Salento Film Festival Screenplay Competition was produced by CineSalento Productions and the city of Tricase (LE) in Italy, features Italian television stars, Claudia Ruffo, star of RAI TV’s Orgoglio, and Mario Opinato.

     For the last 10 years, in between developing writing and directing projects, Sparano has assistant decorated hundreds of television commercials including Clio Award winning spots for Jack in the Box, and Infinity.  Recently, he began Set Decorating for such reality TV shows as America's Next Top Model, True Beauty, and more in addition to Residential Interior Design jobs. He has also began Production Designing short films, two of which will be on the Festival circuit next year.

Online, Sparano gained popularity with TV viewers by writing his behind-the-scenes blog as “John The Prop Guy” from The Office. The day after each episode aired, 5,000 readers would log in to read John’s blog and find out the inside scoop on the show.

     Sparano is married to entertaining expert and television personality Jeanne Benedict, host of Weekend Entertaining on the DIY Network.  Besides working together on “Reality School” where Benedict plays herself, they also have 2 children.


John Sparano Film

John Sparano Design