Rel Dowdell is an American screenwriter, film director, film producer, and English/film studies/screenwriting educator. Born and raised in Philadelphia, he received his bachelor’s degree in English with magna cum laude honors from Fisk University and a master’s degree in film and screenwriting with highest distinction from Boston University


Dr. Ira De Augustine Reid


Dowdell’s first feature film, Train Ride, received substantial critical acclaim. Produced with independent financing, the film was acquired and distributed by Sony Pictures in 2005 and was a tremendous financial success. Train Ride was ranked as one of the best American films that year as cited by veteran film critic Gerald Peary of The Boston Phoenix. The film also garnered high praise in film historian and writer Irv Slifkin’s best-selling book, Filmadelphia: A Celebration of a City’s Movies. Train Ride also won the honor of “Best Feature” at the American Theatre of Harlem Film festival in 2005.

on the web

Dowdell’s latest feature film project is a documentary on history-making African-American collegiate educator Dr. Ira De Augustine Reid, who was one of the first African-Americans to receive tenure at a prestigious predominately northern Caucasian institution in Haverford College in Haverford, PA. The documentary is tentatively titled Dr. Ira De A. Reid: Haverford College’s Unsung Scholar/Activist.


Train Ride Changing The Game Where's Daddy

Attention: Any who knew Professor Ira Reid—we want to hear from you!

A new documentary team wants to hear from any who have memories of the late Professor Ira de Augustine Reid. Dr. Reid chaired the College’s departments of sociology and anthropology from 1948 until his retirement in 1966. He was Haverford's first African American professor.


Coming soon