Bill Pohlad has been making groundbreaking films under the River Road Entertainment banner for over thirty years. As a producer, he has been instrumental in such films as Steve McQueen’s Academy Award®-winning Best Picture 12 Years a Slave, Terrence Malick’s Academy Award-nominated and 2011 Palme d’Or winner The Tree of Life and Sean Penn’s award-winning adaptation of Into the Wild. As an executive producer, Bill’s credits include Ang Lee’s Academy Award-winning Brokeback Mountain, Robert Altman’s A Prairie Home Companion, Robert Kenner’s documentary Food, Inc. and Madonna’s I’m Going to Tell You a Secret.
After earning a bachelor’s degree in accounting and economics from Gonzaga University and working in marketing for the family’s financial services companies through much of the 1980s, Bill decided to pursue his life-long passion for film. With the family’s support, he started River Road Entertainment and directed his first feature film and numerous commercials, documentaries and industrial films. While he has been focusing on his producing activities for the last 15 years, Bill made his return to directing in 2014 with Love & Mercy, a dramatic and unconventional portrait of the mercurial singer, songwriter, producer and leader of the Beach Boys, Brian Wilson. The film stars John Cusack, Paul Dano, Elizabeth Banks and Paul Giamatti.
In addition to his activities in the entertainment business, Bill currently serves as president of the Carl and Eloise Pohlad Family Foundation.
Bill and his wife, Michelle, live in Minneapolis and have one son, Oliver.