Robert Nelson Jacobs is an American screenwriter.


Born to Merle and Harold Jacobs on February 24, 1954, Robert Nelson Jacobs grew up in the Pocono Mountains of Pennsylvania. Growing up in Stroudsburg, Monroe County, Pennsylvania, he was a regular visitor to the Sherman cinema, where he first realized that he wanted to write for the movies.He began writing for the Pocono Record. Jacobs attended Yale University where he received the Curtis Literary Prize for his short fiction and graduated with honors. He earned his master's degree from the Iowa Writers' Workshop. Jacobs began his career as a writer of short stories that were published in little, prestigious magazines that generated little, prestigious income. Jacobs' love of movies brought him to Los Angeles, California where it took a number of years for his work to finally start paying the rent. He also met his wife, Hilary Nelson, adding Nelson to his name. After several years as a short story writer he penned his first screenplay 'Out to Sea' for Jack Lemmon and Walter Matthau in 1997. Two collaborations with Lasse Hallstrom have followed, including in 2000, where Jacobs received an Academy Award nomination for best adapted screenplay for Chocolate. In 2014, Jacobs was elected president of the Writers Guild Foundation, a non-profit organization devoted to promoting and preserving the craft of writing for the screen.



  • Robert Nelson was interview once in his career.
  • He was nominated for an Oscar Award.
  • He won an Academy Award and was nominated four more times.
  • His other role includes being a songwriter.