On the eve of the United States’ decision to invade Iraq, filmmaker Jeffrey Porter was on a plane heading to Israel for the first annual Eilat International Film Festival.  Many feared Saddam Hussein would launch Scud missile attacks on U.S. ally Israel as he had during the 1991 Gulf War, but Porter was determined to represent his film All I Want just as he had at its Toronto Film Festival premier weeks earlier.  Fortunately, there were no attacks and Porter and his poignant, romantic comedy starring Eilijah Wood, Franka Potente and Mandy Moore, gave festivalgoers a momentary respite to the looming crisis in the Middle East.

No stranger to precarious situations abroad, Porter has made films under difficult conditions in locales far removed from Hollywood and her comfortable amenities.  He has worked in Romania, Hungary, Czech Republic, Germany, Canada, Mexico, Uruguay, Argentina, Uganda and Tanzania.  Over the years he’s forged enduring relationships with foreign crews and their families, whom he often finds as fascinating as the projects themselves.

Porter began his career as a first assistant cameraman, working alongside acclaimed cinematographers Phedon Papamichael and Janusz Kaminski.  His artistry became immediately apparent as he spawned his own assured style of visual storytelling—but it was his empathy and easy rapport with actors that made an indelible impression on the directors and producers he worked under.  As a result many frequently asked him to shoot and direct their second units.

Legendary producer Roger Corman spotted Porter’s potential and offered him the opportunity to make his directorial debut with The Liars’ Club, an unflinching drama about the date rape and murder of a high school cheerleader.  The film received high acclaim and paved the way for Porter's future endeavors—including All I Want (2003) and his powerful documentary A World of Conflict (2007), which chronicles pioneer journalist Kevin Sitesjourney to every war zone in the world in a one year period.

When not making films, Porter can be found wandering the back streets of the world, photographing the intimate lives of people and their environments with his Nikon SLR.  Porter’s photo essay portraying young prostitutes who ply their trade at Hyena Square in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania appeared in the Fall 2010 issue of Nieman Reports, a quarterly published by the Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard University.  His photos of controversial Ugandan journalist Andrew Mwenda appeared in the February 1, 2009 issue of Parade Magazine.

Currently, Porter is developing City of Roses, a screenplay which explores the phenomenon of runaway and homeless youth living on the streets of downtown Portland, Oregon. “What's important for me is to connect to something I know is important in my lifetime, and play my part by bringing it to an audience. And maybe through my voice and through filmmaking, things can change—even just slightly.”