Martin Brest (August 8, 1951) is an American filmmaker, producer, screenwriter, film editor, and actor. He graduated from Stuyvesant High School in 1969, from New York University's School of the Arts in 1973 and from the AFI Conservatory with an M.F.A. degree in 1977.
Brest's first major hit film was 1984's Beverly Hills Cop, starring Eddie Murphy. The film earned well over $200 million at the North American box office.
His work on 1992's Scent of a Woman earning him a Golden Globe for Best Picture, and the film was nominated several Academy Awards. While he lost Best Picture and Best Director to Clint Eastwood (Unforgiven), the film gave Al Pacino an Oscar for Best Actor, 20 years after Pacino's first nomination for Supporting Actor in The Godfather.
Six years later, Brest released Meet Joe Black, a remake of Death Takes a Holiday. Meet Joe Black received fairly good reviews but was not considered an awards contender like Scent of a Woman.
Five years later, Brest released the box-office bomb Gigli, starring Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez. This film was critically panned throughout the U.S. and was a financial disaster. Costing more than $54 million, it made only $3.8 million its opening weekend. The critical and financial failure of Gigli led to it receiving six Razzies as the celebrated Worst Picture of the Year. Brest himself received three of those awards.
Brest was born in the Bronx, New York, New York.