Some Like It Wilder: The Life and Controversial Films of Billy Wilder

Some Like It Wilder: The Life and Controversial Films of Billy Wilder

by Gene D. Phillips
     
 

One of the most accomplished writers and directors of classic Hollywood, Billy Wilder (1906—2002) directed numerous acclaimed films, including Sunset Boulevard (1950), Sabrina (1954), The Seven Year Itch (1955), Witness for the Prosecution (1957), and Some Like It Hot (1959). Featuring Gene D. Phillips's unique, in-depth critical approach, Some Like It Wilder&

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Overview

One of the most accomplished writers and directors of classic Hollywood, Billy Wilder (1906—2002) directed numerous acclaimed films, including Sunset Boulevard (1950), Sabrina (1954), The Seven Year Itch (1955), Witness for the Prosecution (1957), and Some Like It Hot (1959). Featuring Gene D. Phillips's unique, in-depth critical approach, Some Like It Wilder: The Life and Controversial Films of Billy Wilder provides a groundbreaking overview of a filmmaking icon. Wilder began his career as a screenwriter in Berlin but, because of his Jewish heritage, sought refuge in America when Germany came under Nazi control. Making fast connections in Hollywood, Wilder immediately made the jump from screenwriter to director. His classic films Five Graves to Cairo (1943), Double Indemnity (1945), and The Lost Weekend (1945) earned Academy Awards for best picture, director, and screenplay. During the 1960s, Wilder continued to direct and produce controversial comedies, including Kiss Me, Stupid (1964) and The Apartment (1960), which won Oscars for best picture and director. This definitive biography reveals that Wilder was, and remains, one of the most influential directors in filmmaking.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780813125701
Publisher:
University Press of Kentucky
Publication date:
07/30/2010
Series:
Screen Classics
Pages:
464
Sales rank:
937,973
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.70(d)

Table of Contents

Foreword: Fred Zinnemann Speaking

1 From Berlin to Hollywood: The Early Screenplays 1

2 Champagne and Tears: Ninotchka, Midnight, and Ball of Fire 19

3 New Directions: The Major and the Minor and Five Graves to Cairo 33

4 The Rise of Film Noir: Double Indemnity 53

5 Through a Glass Daddy: The Lost Weekend and Die Todesmuhlen 71

6 Wunderbar: The Emperor Waltz and A Foreign Affair 89

7 Dark Windows: Sunset Boulevard 109

8 Barbed Wire Satire: Ace in the Hole and Stalag 17 129

9 Fascination: Sabrina and The Seven Year Itch 153

10 Light Up the Sky: The Spirit of St. Louis and Love in the Afternoon 177

11 Remains to Be Seen: Witness for the Prosecution 197

12 The Gang's All Here: Some Like It Hot 211

13 Love on the Dole: The Apartment 231

14 Love on the Run: One, Two, Three and Irma la Douce 247

15 Grifters: Kiss Me, Stupid and The Fortune Cookie 269

16 The Game's Afoot: The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes 293

17 The Perfect Blendship: The Front Page and Avanti! 307

18 Twilight Years: Fedora and Buddy Buddy 323

Epilogue: A Touch of Class 341

Filmography 347

Notes 367

Selected Bibliography 409

Index 417

Illustrations follow page 162

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