James Clauer was born in Nashville, Tennessee in 1973 to members of Alister Crowley’s O.T.O. organization. He spent time in juvenile hall and was homeless for a period. He has known Harmony Korine since childhood.

In 1997, Clauer worked as second unit director on Gummo, on which he also had credits as associate producer and production manager. Clauer has also worked in varying capacities on Safe Men (1998), TV's Upright Citizens Brigade (1998), Claire Dolan (1998) and Two Ninas (1999).

In 2003, Clauer worked as second assistant director on Above the Below, directed by Korine.

In 2006, Clauer directed the short documentary The Aluminum Fowl, produced by Korine with O'Salvation, which was selected for competition at various prestigious film festivals, including the Sundance Film Festival (2008) and the Film Festival Rotterdam (2008).

James Clauer