Glenn Ford: A Life

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Overview

Glenn Ford—star of such now-classic films as Gilda, Blackboard Jungle, The Big Heat, 3:10 to Yuma, and The Rounders—had rugged good looks, a long and successful career, and a glamorous Hollywood life. Yet the man who could be accessible and charming on screen retreated to a deeply private world he created behind closed doors.
    Glenn Ford: A Life chronicles the volatile life, relationships, and career of the renowned actor, beginning with his move from Canada to...

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Glenn Ford: A Life

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Overview

Glenn Ford—star of such now-classic films as Gilda, Blackboard Jungle, The Big Heat, 3:10 to Yuma, and The Rounders—had rugged good looks, a long and successful career, and a glamorous Hollywood life. Yet the man who could be accessible and charming on screen retreated to a deeply private world he created behind closed doors.
    Glenn Ford: A Life chronicles the volatile life, relationships, and career of the renowned actor, beginning with his move from Canada to California and his initial discovery of theater. It follows Ford’s career in diverse media—from film to television to radio—and shows how Ford shifted effortlessly between genres, playing major roles in dramas, noir, westerns, and romances.
    This biography by Glenn Ford’s son, Peter Ford, offers an intimate view of a star’s private and public life. Included are exclusive interviews with family, friends, and professional associates, and snippets from the Ford family collection of diaries, letters, audiotapes, unpublished interviews, and rare candid photos. This biography tells a cautionary tale of Glenn Ford’s relentless infidelities and long, slow fade-out, but it also embraces his talent-driven career. The result is an authentic Hollywood story that isn’t afraid to reveal the truth.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“Glenn Ford was a perfect gentleman, educated and kind. When called upon to perform, he was a hell of an actor.”—Mickey Rooney

Library Journal
There have been several biographies of film stars written by their children; some are infamous, a few are influential, many are bitter, and others willingly embrace the mythology of the famous parent. Peter Ford's biography of his father, the actor Glenn Ford, is a frank portrait of a conflicted man and a respected star of Golden Age Hollywood. Glenn lived long enough to witness both the steady decline of his fame and the deaths of many of his friends and colleagues and was, on a fundamental level, unable to open his life to his son. Peter succeeds in objectively revisiting his father's life and work while peeling back without fear the painful layers in their mutual history. What emerges is a fascinating biography of an often overlooked actor who in his long career starred in many classic films, including Gilda, Blackboard Jungle, and 3:10 to Yuma. VERDICT This biography should rank with Maria Riva's Marlene Dietrich as one of the best examples of a family biography and should appeal to film scholars and film fans alike.—Teri Shiel, Westfield State Univ. Lib., MA
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780299281540
  • Publisher: University of Wisconsin Press
  • Publication date: 5/12/2011
  • Series: Wisconsin Film Studies Series
  • Edition description: 1
  • Pages: 358
  • Sales rank: 261,752
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Peter Ford appeared in eight films with his father, Glenn Ford, as well as many other movies, television shows, and stage productions. He lives in Beverly Hills, California.

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Table of Contents

Foreword by Patrick McGilligan

 

1. Gwyllyn Goes to Hollywood        

2. Seeds of Stardom        

3. Love, Marriage, and War        

4. "Amado Mio"

5. "Trouble in Paradise"        

6. "It's Only Make-Believe"        

7. "Fire and Rain"        

8. "Rock Around the Clock"        

9. "Glory Days"        

10. "Singin' the Blues"        

11. "Cat's in the Cradle"        

12. "Auld Lang Syne"        

13. "Hard to Say"        

14. "Devil or Angel"        

15. "Lyin' Eyes"        

Epilogue: "Yesterday"        

Acknowledgments        

Glenn Ford Filmography        

Bibliography        

Index

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 5 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 5 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 8, 2013

    Very well written and very, very good!

    This book is one of the best biographies I've had the pleasure to read in a very long time! Glenn Ford was a good man, a fine actor and extremely generous to his family and friends. I would find myself checking to see what page I was on for I didn't want the book to end. What better praise than that for an exceptional read!!

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  • Posted August 15, 2011

    A rare look at a rare man.

    So little is written about this incredibly talented and overlooked actor, this is an opportunity to enjoy a balanced and intimate reflection of his story. Written with affection and honesty this piece shares Glenn Ford's life through the eyes of his only son, Peter. What makes this read very interesting is that he combines a great deal of this material from the extensive journals of his father, with his own memories of the lives of both his parents. Although underrated, this is the story of one Hollywood's biggest stars. We also see a Hollywood family as Peter's mother was great stage and screen dancer Eleanor Powell. What happens to the family when great stardom comes to two parents in Hollywood's golden age. What happens when a star who has had great success in Hollywood, must face a fading career? What happens when this son sees this situation happen to each of his parents? A terrific read.

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  • Posted June 9, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    A wonderful look at the fascinating life of Glenn Ford

    Peter Ford, the only child of Glenn Ford, has done a masterful job in recounting the life and times of his iconic father in this new biography.

    Ford appeared in about 100 films. Many cinema critics say he never gave a bad performance, and I agree. Many of Ford's films are now considered film classics.

    This superb biography is a delight to read and offers insight into the unusual and colorful life of a talented and much underrated film actor. Peter Ford includes fascinating details of his father's remarkable life, his talented mother, Eleanor Powell, and his relationship with both of them. Also included are interesting comments by close friends of the late actor.

    "Glenn Ford: A Life" is a must-read for anyone who has an affection for Glenn Ford and his superb acting talents or has a serious interest in American cinema.

    Bravo, Peter Ford, for a job well done. Highly recommended!

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  • Posted May 20, 2011

    Masterful Biography

    What a masterful job Peter Ford did in chronicling his father's life and weaving his own story into it! The entire saga of Glenn Ford's life - before the cameras and personal - is completely told in an entertaining and compelling way. Although there were complexities, Peter Ford tells about the professional and personal lives of his parents and many other very public figures in a way that is revealing and yet never judgmental. This book is an excellent biography and more, a large piece of Hollywood history.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 10, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

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