Johnson Cheng is an award-winning Chinese American writer/director hailing from the San Gabriel Valley of Los Angeles County. After receiving his B.A. in International Relations, he joined Columbia University's M.F.A. Film Directing/Screenwriting program. His short films have screened at over 100 international film festivals, including Tribeca, TIFF - Kids, Reykjavík (Golden Egg Selection), Nashville, Cinequest, Palm Springs (Best Student Film), and Short Shorts in Tokyo. He is an alumnus of the Armed with a Camera Fellowship, Reykjavík Transatlantic Talent Lab, Telluride Film Festival Student Symposium, and the Smithsonian Institute/National Endowment for the Humanities' Emerging Filmmakers Lab.
His film, "Iron Hands (铁手)", had its world premiere at the 2017 Tribeca Film Festival where it was nominated for the Student Visionary Award. The film was also a Golden Egg selection at the Reykjavík International Film Festival, received the Best Foreign Short Film Award at the Long Beach International Film Festival, won an Honorable Mention for Best Student Film at the Irvine International Film Festival, and won the Best Student Live Action Short Film Award at the Palm Springs International Short Film Festival. His most recent film, “Beast” premiered at the Oscar-qualifying 2018 Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival. Through his student film work, he was honored with CAAMFest’s 2018 AT&T InspirASIAN Student Film Award.
Johnson began his career as an intern at PIXAR, working on feature films such as “Monsters University” and "Coco". He went on to work as a Story Editor on “The Book of Mojo”, Asst. Editor on “The Book of Life”, and Asst. Editor on DreamWorks Animation's “Kung Fu Panda 3” – the first animated co-production between the U.S. and China. Outside of his own film work, Johnson has taught film directing at Columbia University's Summer Program and served as a Directing Mentor and Graduate Teaching Assistant in the M.F.A. Film Program. Johnson is a member of the Motion Picture Editors Guild.