Peter Benchley

Peter Benchley


5/8/1940, New York City, New York USA



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Peter Benchley is best known for his 1974 novel and screenplay 'Jaws', which became a successful movie hit of the same name. Peter was the son of author Nathaniel Benchley; and grew up in New York City. He attended school there through to his 8th grade and then…more


Trivia and Quotes

  • Trivia

    • In the mid-70s, Peter Benchley's spent much of his time in a yellow frame house in Pennington, N.J., which he shared with his wife, Wendy and his children, Tracy and Clayton.

    • Peter Benchley had a radio show called The Ocean Report. It was broadcast on about 200 radio stations around the world.

    • Two books that most influenced Peter's life are: The Once and Future King by T.H. White, and James Boswell's Life of Johnson, the biography of Dr. Samuel Johnson.

    • Peter Benchley has a yellow Labrador named Baggio.

    • In the Bahamas, an oceanic white-tipped shark once tried to bite Peter Benchley. Peter tried to hit the shark in the eye with a stick but hit it in the mouth instead. And Peter ended up being dragged through the waters with his stick caught in his wrist and in the shark's mouth.

    • Peter Benchley claims that all his novels are based on something that had happened to him or something that he knows a great deal about.

    • Apart from his 'Jaws' novel, Peter Benchley has also written the following novels: The Deep (1976), The Island (1979), The Girl of the Sea of Cortez (1982), Q Clearance (1986), Rummies (1989) aka Lush, Beast (1991), White Shark (1994), and Peter Benchley's Creature (1997).

    • Peter Benchley's novel terrified millions of swimmers who read it or watched the movie adaptation of it. Peter however was not afraid of sharks.

    • Peter Benchley made a cameo appearance as a reporter in the movie 'Jaws', which was adapted from his script which he co-wrote with Carl Gottlieb.

    • Peter's 1974 novel 'Jaws' was on the New York's bestseller's list for 40 over weeks. And sold over 20 million copies.

    • Peter Benchley was inspired to write the novel 'Jaws' when he read about a fisherman who had caught a 4,550 pound Great White Shark off Long Island in the Mid-1960s.

    • Peter Benchley is a member of the National Council of Environmental Defense. And he was awareded the David B. Stone Award for distinguished service in the environment and the community in September 16, 2005.

    • Peter became interested in sharks ever since he was a child growing up in Nuntucket Island, Massachusetts.

  • Quotes

    • Peter Benchley: I guess I'm a hopeful optimist, because to be a pessimist is to be suicidal.

    • Peter Benchley: I don't keep a writer's notebook. I seem to store things in my head and when the time comes, I am fortunate enough to have them come forward.

    • Peter Benchley: I don't believe in blaming inanimate objects for anything.

    • Peter Benchley: One of the things that attracted me to "Amazon" (Peter Benchley's Amazon), was the chance to tell two classic stories: a survival story, and a "land of the lost" story involving descendants of shipwrecked sailors from the 17th century.

    • Peter Benchley: Every time you get into the water with a Great White, you feel completely insignificant. Not only from the fear but also from the sense of how absolutely perfect that animal is in its environment, and how out of place you are.

    • Peter Benchley: I believe implicitly that every young man in the world is fascinated with either sharks or dinosaurs.

  • Anyone who loved the movie "JAWS" should know Peter Benchley. The movie was an adaptation of his novel of the same name. However, Peter Benchley should have been best remembered for his environmental works and efforts.moreless

    Peter Benchley wasn't just a writer, the man was an avid enviromentalist who changed the way people thought of the sea. The movie "JAWS" by directer, Steven Spielberg, which was written by Benchley caused a huge stir among many beach goers.

    Benchley has taught the world to respect the ocean and the creatures that make the waters their home. His 'Ocean Report' on the air waves, his writings and his numerous documentaries made a deep impact on many.

    Peter's death is a huge loss to the world and a bigger loss to the sea world.moreless