Brian Knappenberger

Brian Knappenberger

Director, Producer, Writer, Executive Producer


Brian Knappenberger is an American filmmaker and director. He is best known for his work on documentaries such as The Internet's Own Boy: The Story of Aaron Swartz, Nobody Speak: Trials of the Free Press and The Largest Movie Ever Sold.

Knappenberger was born in Allentown, Pennsylvania and attended the University of Pennsylvania. After graduating, he moved to Los Angeles and worked in the film and television industry in various capacities. He worked on various projects, including writing, producing, and directing.

In 2006, Knappenberger founded the company Luminant Media, which produced documentaries and narrative films. Through Luminant Media, he produced and directed the documentary We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists, which focused on the story of the hacktivist group Anonymous.

In 2013, Knappenberger directed The Internet's Own Boy: The Story of Aaron Swartz, a documentary about the life and work of Internet activist Aaron Swartz. The film was a critical and commercial success, winning numerous awards and receiving an Academy Award nomination.

In 2017, Knappenberger directed the documentary Nobody Speak: Trials of the Free Press, which examined the case of Las Vegas newspaper publisher Sheldon Adelson. The film explored the effects of money and power on the freedom of the press, and the attempts by Adelson and others to silence the press.

In 2020, Knappenberger released The Largest Movie Ever Sold, an examination of the world of product placement and brand integration in Hollywood films. The film was praised for its humorous take on the subject, and was a commercial and critical success.

Knappenberger's work has been praised for its wit and insight. He is a recipient of the International Documentary Association's Courage Under Fire Award, and has been recognized by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for his work. He is currently working on a feature film about the life of the late rock star Prince.