John Badham witnessed the delight of theatre and film at an early age, with his mother acting in many local theatre productions and his younger sister playing the role of Scout in To Kill a Mockingbird (1962). Badham, after a stint of acting in college, attended the Yale Drama School, where he received valuable training as a theater director of which he would later use on the screen.
Starting in the casting department at Universal Studios, John worked his way up to assistant directing on numerous television shows such as the The Bold Ones: The Protectors and Rod Serling’s Night Gallery. His first job directing was for the series, The Bold Ones: The Senator in 1971. Badham went on to work steadily in episodic television, directing for the series The Bold Ones: The Senator and Night Gallery, as well as many films for television during the 1970s including, The Law (1974) and The Gun (1974).
Badham made his feature film debut with the hugely successful Saturday Night Fever (1977) and subsequently directed numerous films including Whose Life is it Anyway? (1981), WarGames (1983), Short Circuit (1986), and Nick of Time (1995). Badham has continued to direct in episodic television on such series as Heroes, Nikita, Psych and Blind Justice, which he executive produced. For his work as a director, Badham has been twice nominated for an Emmy for both The Bold Ones: The Senator and The Law.
Badham has been a very active member of the Directors Guild of America, serving on the Western Directors Council from 1983-2012, the National Board from 1999-2005, and the Directors Guild Foundation from 1998-2001.