Jay Paul Deratany

Jay Paul Deratany is the writer and producer of Foster Boy, a real-life legal drama starring Academy Award Winner® Louis Gossett Jr., Matthew Modine, Shane Paul McGhie, Julie Benz and Amy Brenneman, and executive produced by Shaquille O’Neal. The film, out now on demand, spotlights some of the horrific abuse and institutional coverups that plague the foster care system, moral and legal issues that Deratany has fought against in the courtroom. Deratany is an accomplished lawyer, human rights activist, and foster-youth advocate who uses his intense experiences in the legal system to cultivate his projects as a playwright and a screenwriter. He has spent his entire career pursuing justice for the vulnerable and creating change in our society; his firm won a historic $45,000,000 verdict in a foster care wrongful death case as well as the then-largest jury verdict in Lake County history, $23,000,000, in a birth injury case. Deratany obtained his MFA from the University of California Riverside. He has written several plays, including Haram Iran, which was nominated for a GLAAD award for best theatrical play of 2011, and the screenplay Saugatuck Cures. He resides in Chicago with his husband, Curt Smith.


Why a Lawyer Wrote a Movie

By Jay Paul Deratany | September 28, 2020

Why a Lawyer Wrote a Movie

Jay Paul Deratany, a working attorney who wrote and produced the new film Foster Boy, on his duty to share the stories of foster youth.