Writer and Filmmaker
John Heminway’s career has been distinguished by a fascination with nature, science, evolution, travel and the human drama.
Heminway was born in New York, was educated there, Switzerland, Massachusetts and at Princeton University from which he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in 1966.
Heminway has written six books. His first, The Imminent Rains, published when he was 23, describes an overland journey from South Africa to Kenya. Another, No Man’s Land, is a portrait of striking people affected by Africa. William F. Buckley called it “the best book I have ever read on Africa and one of the best I have read in any category in years.” Tom Brokaw called his Yonder: A Place In Montana, published in 2000 by National Geographic, “eloquent and deeply felt.” Heminway has recently completed Flight: An African Icon and Her Life In Secret, a tale of atonement on the grand scale. W.W. Norton will publish it in North America. It also is planned for publication throughout Europe and in Israel. In addition, Heminway has written for numerous magazines. In 1989, he was cited for his role in earning Condé Nast Traveler the National Magazine Award.
Heminway began his film career in 1968 with ABC Sports’ “The American Sportsman,” then America’s highest-rated sports show. Over the decades he has written and produced a wide-range of television and film projects, earning such honors as the George F. Peabody Award and Alfred I. DuPont-Columbia Award for Broadcast Journalism, as well as a Telly and a Ciné Golden Eagle award. Heminway’s opening to the first show of “The Brain” is in the Smithsonian Institute’s permanent collection. In 1988, Heminway wrote and produced two hours of the PBS series “The Mind” and won the Primetime Emmy for writing.
Between 1988 and 1993, Heminway was Executive Producer and host of the popular PBS series, “Travels,” comprising nearly 50 authored journeys to all corners of the world. He was awarded both the Christopher Award and, in 1995, the George F. Peabody Award.
Between 1994 and 1995, Heminway worked at Disney Cruise Lines, helping fashion story line and ship design for Disney’s two 85,000-ton ships. He spearheaded the East African premiere of Disney’s “The Lion King,” and was a creative consultant for the Disney Institute and Disney Vacation Club. In 1998, he produced, directed and wrote the video about the ship, Disney Magic. He also authored Disney Magic: The Launching of A Dream, published in 1998 by Hyperion Press and now reissued for sale onboard.
Between 2001 and 2002, Heminway was President of Media for Abercrombie & Kent, a 0 million global travel provider. Subsequently he advised RCI, the world’s foremost timeshare exchange company.
“Bones of Turkana” which he wrote, directed and produced for National Geographic Television will be aired in May 2012 on PBS. Heminway directed, wrote and co-produced “Stress: Portrait of a Killer” for National Geographic Television that aired on PBS, in 2008. In 2006, Vulcan Productions optioned Heminway’s screenplay, FLIGHT. He is one of the contributors to an oral history of George Plimpton, published in 2008.
Heminway has been a trustee of Trout Unlimited and the Leakey Foundation. He is trustee of the White Oak Conservation Center, a member of the advisory boards of the American Prairie Foundation, Trustee Emeritus of the African Wildlife Foundation which he served as Chairman for nine years, a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society and, since the age of 17, a member of the Explorers’ Club where, in June 2002, he was named a “Champion of Wildlife”.
Heminway works in and out of New York, and lives with his wife, Kathryn, and ten-year-old daughter, Lucia, in Montana.