Randy Olson
Biography & Resources


Randy Olson is a marine biologist and filmmaker. He holds a PhD in biology from Harvard University, and specializes in the ecology of marine invertebrate larvae of such species as starfish, corals, and sea squirts. He has published over twenty research papers, including studies of larval dispersal, nutrition, and settlement.

Dr. Olson graduated from the U.S.C. Cinema School in 1997 and recently wrote and directed the feature documentary, "Flock of Dodos: the evolution-intelligent design circus," which premiered at the 2006 Tribeca Film Festival and was released in early 2007. Variety said the film is, "poised for instant success," The National Review called it, "an important accomplishment," and the New York Times said, "you'll flip over Flock of Dodos."

Olson also co-founded The Shifting Baselines Ocean Media Project, which is a partnership between ocean conservation and Hollywood to explore more innovative ways to communicate the crisis facing our oceans. Shifting Baseline's projects have included short films and television commercials written and directed by Olson, including The Ocean Symphony PSA conducted by Jack Black, recently featured on Youtube.com, producing nearly a half million views.

selected articles

New York Times review of Flock of Dodos

organizational affiliations

The Shifting Baselines Ocean Media Project

other related websites

Flock of Dodos
Official film website

Randy Olson's faculty bio at USC

articles & interviews

Broadcasts on WIE Unbound

Two Filmmakers
(with Mira Nair)