KELLY YOUNGER is a screenwriter and award-winning playwright with work staged off-Broadway, regionally, and internationally.
Younger spent three years developing and writing a Disney Animation Feature film and served as a member of the Disney Animation Story Trust, working on such films as Moana, Ralph Breaks the Internet, Frozen 2, Raya and the Last Dragon, and others in development including the Short Circuit short film series. Additionally he consulted on the live-action Tinkerbell (prod. Reese Witherspoon) and the live-action Aladdin (dir. Guy Ritchie), and participated in the Pixar Animation Brain Trust on Cars 3, Incredibles 2, Toy Story 4, Onward, and other forthcoming Pixar films.
Younger is currently writing and developing several projects for The Muppets, having already co-created and co-executive produced Muppets Now streaming on Disney+. He is also currently co-writing a feature film for Warner Animation Group as well as developing an animated television series with Shadowmachine, Brian Calhoun, and Dave Matthews of the Dave Matthews Band. He is writing a new original holiday feature for Disney, developing a live-action drama series with Gloria Calderon Kellett for Amazon, an animated adaptation of a beloved children’s book for Apple. Younger has also recently developed features with Paramount Animation and DreamWorks Animation.
He currently has an original live-action feature partnered with Imagine Entertainment (Ron Howard, Brian Glaser). Younger is also adapting a YA book for a new animated feature with producer Jared Ian Goldman (Ingrid Goes West) and Oscar nominated directors Ru Kuwahata and Max Porter; and story consulting for Illumination Animation and Skydance Animation Studios.
He has previously developed with Mandeville Films; Gil Netter Productions; Disney Channel; as well as individual projects with Robert Lawrence (Clueless), Jon Turtletaub (National Treasure), and Oscar winners Espen Sandberg and Joachim Rønning (Kon-Tiki, Pirates of the Caribbean).
Younger co-wrote the hit comedy Kalamazoo with Michelle Kholos Brooks (Dramatists Play Service, 2016; Riva Shriver Comedy Award.) Other theater projects include Banished Children of Eve (commissioned and produced by New York’s Irish Repertory Theatre); and Ink (finalist for the Joanne Woodward/Paul Newman Drama Award.) His play Tender was nominated for Best New Play IRNE award, was a finalist for the prestigious Laurents/Hatcher Award, and was part of Manhattan Theatre Club’s “7@7” series, directed by Lynne Meadow, starring David Harbour.
Younger’s short play, Mandate (Samuel French, 2015) won the 39th Samuel French Off-Off-Broadway Short Play Festival and has received productions as far away as Edinburgh and Dubai. Other short plays include Let’s Get Physical (Hollywood; Miami; Edinburgh Fringe Festival), and Best Lei’d Plans (Hollywood, starring Markie Post and Mindy Sterling; Barrington MA; Miami.) These short plays played around the world as part of City Theatre’s “Shorts on Ships” series on Royal Caribbean Cruises.
Born and raised in Los Angeles, Younger earned an MA in Classics (Mythology, Folktales, and Fairy Tales) at Loyola University Chicago and PhD in Literature and Drama Studies from University College Dublin in Ireland. He is currently a tenured professor and resident playwright in the Departments of English and Theater at Loyola Marymount University where he leads writing workshops and a seminar in fairy tales. He is a proud member of The Writer’s Guild of America, The Dramatists Guild of America, and The International Animated Film Society (where he serves as a judge for the Annie Awards).
He resides in Los Angeles with his wife, two children, and dogs named Mildred and Sean Solo.