Peter Benchley © Scott Stallard

Peter Benchley


Peter Benchley (1940-2006) was an American author, best known for his novel Jaws and its subsequent film adaptation, which was co-written by Benchley and directed by Steven Spielberg. Several more of his works were also adapted for cinema, including The Deep and The Island.

Benchley was the son of author Nathaniel Benchley and grew up in New York City. He attended school there before studying at Phillips Exeter Academy in Exeter, New Hampshire. After graduating from Harvard, he worked as a reporter for the Washington Post, then as an editor for Newsweek.

He was also a speechwriter for President Lyndon Johnson. As a freelance writer, Benchley also wrote movie reviews, travel pieces, freelance television work, and compiled synopses of the news for newspapers.

Benchley died in February 2006.