Born & raised in Philadelphia and at the Jersey Shore, Rich Murray graduated from the film & television program at Temple University in 1983 and began his professional career that same year directing the music video for Philly rocker Alan Mann’s “Christmas on the Block”. That video was the first by an unsigned artist to be played in regular rotation on MTV.
Soon after Murray directed two of the earliest hip hop videos for legends Schoolly D & Roxanne Shante and he quickly became one of the most prolific directors in the music video genre. With a list of credits that includes such mega artists as Kris Kross, Spin Doctors, Fugees, Monica and Billy Ray Cyrus, Murray was the first director to have a #1 video in four different music genres.
He directed 100 plus clips over a 20 year period and won numerous awards in the process. A member of the Director’s Guild of America since 1987, Murray also has a long list of feature film credits. In 2000 he made his feature film directing debut with SNIPES, starring Zoe Saldana, Nelly, Dean Winters and Frank Vincent. The film premiered at the 2001 Toronto Film Festival and was awarded best independent feature at the 2002 Philadelphia International Film Festival. Snipes went on to sell over 500,000 copies on DVD and also set rating records on several cable networks. On the heels of this success Murray launched RuffNation Films, a co venture with Sony Music and record executive Chris Schwartz where he developed, wrote & produced numerous independent features, documentaries and music related long forms throughout the 2000’s. During this period Murray also served as an adjunct professor at several universities (including Drexel & URI) where he created and taught a curriculum in music video production.
Following the financial crisis of 2008 and the decline of both the traditional film and music distribution models, Murray decided to take a break from the film & music business and launch a new career in real estate where he is now one of the most successful agents in NYC.
But with storytelling in his blood, Murray continued to seek a passion project to bring him back to filmmaking and with “No Deal No Sleep”, The Legend of Alan Mann, he has found it. He is currently working hard at completing this documentary about the enigmatic Philly Rocker who launched his career.