William Friedkin

Film director William Friedkin

William Friedkin is an American film director, producer and screenwriter best known for directing The French Connection in 1971 and The Exorcist in 1973; for the former, he won the Academy Award for Best Director. Some of his other films include Sorcerer, Cruising, To Live and Die in L.A. , The Guardian, Jade, Bug, and Killer Joe.
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'The Exorcist' Filmmaker Reflects On Filming 'Real' Exorcism In His New Doc
Huffington Post - 6 months
William Friedkin says he hopes his new documentary will help the woman whom he filmed receiving an exorcism.
Article Link:
 Huffington Post article
A Star Is Born: William Friedkin turns 82 today
LATimes - 6 months
Article Link:
 LATimes article
In the Footsteps of Marcel Proust
NYTimes - 9 months
The legendary filmmaker William Friedkin recalls his obsession with “In Search of Lost Time,” and his attempt to see the novel in real life.
Article Link:
 NYTimes article
William Peter Blatty, Author Of 'The Exorcist,' Dead At 89
Huffington Post - about 1 year
William Peter Blatty, who wrote The Exorcist and won an Oscar for the screenplay adaptation of the horror story, has died. He was 89.  William Friedkin, who directed the film version of “The Exorcist” in 1973, announced the author’s death on Twitter Friday. William Peter Blatty, dear friend and brother who created The Exorcist passed away yesterday — William Friedkin (@WilliamFriedkin) January 13, 2017 Blatty died Thursday in a hospital in Bethesda, Maryland, from a form of blood cancer, his wife, Julia Alice Blatty, told The Associated Press. Blatty’s chilling story of a Catholic priest attempting to rid a young girl of a demonic spirit was a best-seller after his earlier novels, mostly comedic, had failed to reach a wide audience, according to The Guardian. Set in the Georgetown neighborhood of Washington, “The Exorcist” captivated readers with the increasingly strange and unsettling occurrences happening around the main character, Regan MacNeil, and...
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 Huffington Post article
5 Memorable Haunted Houses Of Classic Horror Movies
Huffington Post - over 1 year
For Architectural Digest, by Elizabeth Stamp. While nothing is quite as scary as the murderous or supernatural characters in horror movies, often the settings can come very close. Directors such as John Carpenter and Wes Craven have long had a knack for choosing locations, particularly houses, that provide the perfect backdrop for murder and mayhem. Many of the homes, such as Frank Lloyd Wright’s Ennis House, are either famous in their own right or iconic thanks to their time on the big screen. As Halloween approaches, AD looks back at the homes from some of the most popular horror movies of all time. House on Haunted Hill Frank Lloyd Wright’s iconic Ennis House in Los Angeles has been featured in many Hollywood productions, from Blade Runner to the TV show Buffy the Vampire Slayer. The 1925 landmark made one of its earliest and best-known appearances in William Castle’s 1959 film House on Haunted Hill,where it was used as the exterior of the titular home. Poltergeist ...
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 Huffington Post article
'The Exorcist' maker says Vatican let him film real rite
Yahoo News - almost 2 years
William Friedkin, the director of the horror classic "The Exorcist", has revealed that he was allowed to film a real exorcism at the Vatican earlier this month. The 80-year-old American filmmaker told a masterclass at the Cannes film festival late Thursday that he was invited by Rome's exorcist to record the event. "I was invited by the Vatican exorcist to shoot and video an actual exorcism which... few people have ever seen and which nobody has ever photographed," he said.
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 Yahoo News article
Scary Scrum of Candidates
Huffington Post - over 2 years
A Republican roster ready for the Exorcist Steps. D.C. officials dedicated the famed Exorcist Steps in Georgetown with a plaque the day before Halloween, and director William Friedkin and author William Peter Blatty were on hand. With all the real scares at home and abroad, it is strange that we take such pleasure in imaginary ones. Several Republican presidential candidates, for example, appear to suffer from demonic possession. Ted Cruz looks like an evil doll in a horror movie. I only have a laugh button for Hillary Clinton, but I admit it gets a bit scary if you press it enough. Since there is no trick-or-treating in my building, I ate the candy myself as I followed the hashtag #NewGOPDebateQuestions mocking Republican candidates for blaming the RNC and CNBC over the questions they were asked last week. Secretary Clinton faced hostile questions solo for eleven hours at the Benghazi hearing, whereas the Republicans split what they dubbed "gotcha" questions among...
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 Huffington Post article
On Being Inspired by Classic Movies at the TCM Classic Film Festival
Huffington Post - about 3 years
What makes something a classic? It's a question worth asking as Hollywood devotes ever more of its resources to remaking movies, TV shows, and comic books from the past as the majority of our movie content today. Not that we mind the odd sequel (we're definitely looking forward to Spectre and Star Wars) - but 2015 will see an unprecedented number of sequels and remakes, including new installments in the Mad Max, Mission Impossible, Jurassic Park, Terminator, Avengers, and Fast and Furious franchises. If you want a break and would like to see some movies that are truly unrepeatable and non-franchisable, we suggest you check out the upcoming 2015 TCM Classic Film Festival, returning to historic Hollywood from March 26th to March 29th, 2015. It's a marvelous chance to see some of the world's classic movies the way they were meant to be seen: on the big screen, and often with their original creators in attendance. The classic movies shown at the TCM Classic Film Festival are i...
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 Huffington Post article
Geffen Postpones Pinter's <i>The Birthday Party</i>!
Huffington Post - about 4 years
It came as a shock to the entire Los Angeles theatrical community. Friday's announcement by the Geffen Playhouse's Artistic Director Randall Arney: "Due to unforeseen circumstances, Harold Pinter's The Birthday Party, to be directed by William Friedkin, has been postponed." The show was to have begun pre-opening performances on Tuesday, and to have officially opened on February 12. Now, another show will be offered later in its stead. In an interview with the Los Angeles Times, Friedkin said that it was due to the departure of actor Steven Berkoff, and the inability find a suitable replacement in the available time. Friedkin said that rehearsals were underway for about a week before he made the decision to let Berkoff go. "I have never let an actor go before," the director told the newspaper. "I feel bad about it, but you have to have a great actor in that role, no question." Berkoff was to have played the role of Goldberg, one of two menacing strangers who interrupt the pro...
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 Huffington Post article
Critic's Notebook: Friedkin Blows Out the Candles on 'The Birthday Party'
LATimes - about 4 years
It would be foolish for an outsider to speculate on the conflict that took place between actor Steven Berkoff and director William Friedkin during rehearsals for the Geffen Playhouse’s now postponed production of “The Birthday Party.” But there’s no denying that the botched handling of this situation was a loss for the Geffen, the artistic company and Los Angeles theater.
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 LATimes article
Discussing <em>The Wicker Man: Final Cut </em>With Director Robin Hardy
Huffington Post - over 4 years
Update: While The Wicker Man: Final Cut tours the U.S. from Bellingham to Brookline (see link below), L.A. audiences are fortunate, as it's just been announced that this Friday night, the first of November, legendary actress Britt Ekland -- "The Landlord's Daughter" herself! -- will introduce the 7:30 screening at Landmark's fabulous Nuart Theatre, plus she's staying for a Q&amp;A. If you miss this, you're crazy. Britt Ekland in The Wicker Man: Final Cut We now return you to the original opening paragraph. I get excited about movies, but rarely does a film astound me. Sinisterly exuberant, elegantly subversive, ravishingly eerie, hilariously chilling -- I just can't throw enough positive adjectival phrases at The Wicker Man: the 1973 masterpiece penned by Anthony Shaffer and magnificently directed by Robin Hardy. At the fore stands the world's greatest actor Christopher Lee, in one of his career peaks ("the best-scripted film I ever took part in," Mr. Lee says of The Wicker Man, ...
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 Huffington Post article
Tavis Smiley: William Friedkin, The Exorcist Director, Says Film Is About the Mystery of Faith
The Huffington Post - over 4 years
Tonight on PBS, I sit down with award-winning director, producer and screenwriter William Friedkin. Can you believe it's been 40 years since the screams in The Exorcist? Friedkin reflects on the making of the film and the genre in Hollywood that followed. In the following clip, Friedkin speaks candidly about how The Exorcist is a film about the mystery of faith. For more of our conversation, be sure to tune in to "Tavis Smiley" tonight on PBS. Check out our website for your local TV listings: www.pbs.org/tavis. After the show, tweet me @TavisSmiley #Friedkin and let me know what you thought about our conversation.
Article Link:
 The Huffington Post article
William Peter Blatty reflects on 40th anniversary of 'The Exorcist'
LATimes - over 4 years
Author William Peter Blatty recalls it took a near-miracle to get anyone to notice his demonic thriller, 'The Exorcist'. For the last four decades, William Peter Blatty's demonic possession thriller, "The Exorcist," has ranked as the ultimate in scare fare. His 1971 novel sat atop the New York Times bestseller list for more than four months, and director William Friedkin's 1973 blockbuster film version, for which Blatty earned the adapted screenplay Oscar, is largely held as a masterpiece of the horror genre.
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 LATimes article
William Friedkin: having 1 of his best years
San Francisco Chronicle - over 4 years
In May, he was a special guest at the San Francisco International Film Festival. Last month, he was given a lifetime achievement award at the Venice Film Festival, where he premiered the restoration of his neglected masterpiece, "Sorcerer." Next month, a remastered 40th anniversary edition of "The Exorcist" will be released on Blu-ray. The Films of William Friedkin is a modest six-film series beginning Thursday night with To Live and Die in L.A., continuing this weekend with The French Connection and The Boys in the Band and finishing next week with Friedkin in person to introduce the Sorcerer restoration (its first screening since the Venice premiere) as well as Cruising and last year's twisted art house hit, Killer Joe. A director like Michael Curtiz in the studio system could do 'Casablanca' and three or four other films that year. Friedkin is especially proud of his memoir, which has gotten mostly good reviews, and says it was somewhat therapeutic for him. At "Sorcerer" (7 p...
Article Link:
 San Francisco Chronicle article
Venice film festival gives lifetime award to Friedkin
Yahoo News - over 4 years
US film-maker William Friedkin, who petrified cinema-goers with "The Exorcist", was awarded a lifetime achievement award by organisers of the Venice film festival on Thursday.
Article Link:
 Yahoo News article
William Friedkin celebrates a Golden Lion, restored 'Sorcerer'
LATimes - over 4 years
The director is being honored for lifetime achievement at the Venice Film Festival, where a new digital version of his 1977 film starring Roy Scheider will be screened. Thursday is going to be a big day for William Friedkin. It will be his 78th birthday ("No gifts, please, I'll just give you my address," he jokes) as well as the day his memoir, "The Friedkin Connection," will be published in Italian.
Article Link:
 LATimes article
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of William Friedkin
  • 2013
    Age 77
    In April 2013 Friedkin published a memoir, The Friedkin Connection.
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  • 2011
    Age 75
    In 2011 Friedkin directed Killer Joe, a black comedy written by Tracy Letts, and starring Matthew McConaughey, Emile Hirsch, Juno Temple, Gina Gershon, and Thomas Haden Church. Killer Joe premiered at the 68th Venice International Film Festival, prior to its North American debut at the 2011 Toronto International Film Festival.
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  • 2010
    Age 74
    In June 2010, author William Peter Blatty, promoting his latest novel, revealed that Friedkin had committed to direct the feature film adaptation of his thriller, Dimiter.
  • 2007
    Age 71
    Friedkin's involvement in 2007's Bug resulted from a positive experience watching the stage version in 2004.
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  • 1981
    Age 45
    Friedkin suffered a major heart attack on March 6, 1981.
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  • 1980
    Age 44
    In 1980, he directed an adaptation of the Gerald Walker crime thriller Cruising, starring Al Pacino, which was protested against even during its making and remains the subject of heated debate.
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  • 1973
    Age 37
    Following these two pictures, Friedkin, along with Francis Ford Coppola and Peter Bogdanovich, was deemed one of the premier directors of New Hollywood; In 1973 the trio announced the formation of an independent production company at Paramount, The Directors Company.
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    Friedkin followed up with 1973's The Exorcist, based on William Peter Blatty's best-selling novel, which revolutionized the horror genre and is considered by some critics to be one of the greatest horror movies of all time.
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  • 1972
    Age 36
    Friedkin began a four-year relationship with Australian dancer and choreographer Jennifer Nairn-Smith in 1972.
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    The idea for the book itself actually came to Blatty while sitting in Friedkin's office in 1972 during the first film's production, as he read an article concerning the then atheist-run state of Albania executing a priest for baptizing a newborn infant.
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  • 1971
    Age 35
    In 1971, his The French Connection was released to wide critical acclaim.
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  • 1970
    Age 34
    While he was filming The Boys in the Band in 1970, Friedkin began a relationship with Kitty Hawks, daughter of director Howard Hawks. It lasted two years, during which the couple announced their engagement, but the relationship ended about 1972.
  • 1965
    Age 29
    In 1965 Friedkin moved to Hollywood and two years later released his first feature film, Good Times starring Sonny and Cher. 'Which I am telling you, is unwatchable.'
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    As mentioned in Friedkin's voice-over commentary on the DVD re-release of Alfred Hitchcock's Vertigo, Friedkin directed one of the last episodes of The Alfred Hitchcock Hour in 1965, called "Off Season".
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  • 1960
    Age 24
    Televised documentaries, such as his Second City documentary A Tale of Two Cities, 1960's Harvest of Shame, also were important in his developing sense of cinema.
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    Friedkin began going to movies as a teenager, and has cited Citizen Kane as one of his key influences. Several sources claim that Friedkin saw this motion picture as a teenager, but Friedkin himself says that he did not see the film until 1960, when he was 25 years old.
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  • 1935
    Born on August 29, 1935.
Original Authors of this text are noted here.
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