George Stevens Jr Looks Back On Career From D.C. To Hollywood – Deadline

With only two days left until Christmas, we can’t think of a better gift for movie buffs or anyone interested in iconic forces in the entertainment industry than the 2022 autobiography. My Place in the Sun Chronicled the life of George Stevens Jr., now 90, still going strong in an amazing career that has traversed Hollywood’s tallest corridors all the way to Washington, DC.

Most important, however, is the story of a father and son. His father is legendary director George Stevens, his two-time Academy Award winner, whose films spanned the musicals of Astaire and Rogers. Gunga Din, The More The Merrier, Woman of the Year, And after World War II, a number of timeless masterpieces A Place In The Sun, Giant, Shane, When Diary of Anne Frank. His son George Jr. spent a lot of time on some of these sets well into the 1965s. best story ever he was an assistant director. But not only because of his name, but because of his desire to prove himself, he stepped out of the shadow of his famous father and, as the title of his book says, himself. had to find the footprints of Sun’. Boy, he’s done it before, and this book is compelling testament to that. His influence can still be felt today. In fact, it’s around the season we’re celebrating now.


Stevens Jr. is the founding director of the Motion Picture Institute of America, which honors those named to the prestigious AFI Film and Television Program of the Year on January 13th. He went to John Ford in 1973 and most recently he went to Julie Andrews in June. Next week will see the telecast of Kennedy’s Center Honors Award on CBS, from his DC ceremony earlier this month, and, as usual, Washington’s Creme de la Creme in attendance and President Biden (ahem). showing business power, including all presidents). Trump made this a must-see), it was also Stevens who created it and produced it all until 2014. Under President Obama, he co-chaired the Presidential Commission on the Arts and Humanities. I got

He has won 15 Emmy Awards, 8 WGA Awards, 2 Peabody Awards, a Humanitas Award and a 2012 Oscar Honorary Award. I loved his previous book, Conversations With The Great Moviemakers of Hollywood’s Golden Age, which is a must-read for movie buffs.


It wasn’t easy to step out of his father’s shadow, but as the book tells, legendary broadcaster Edward R. Murrow recruited him to make a film for the United States Intelligence Agency (USIA). It started in earnest when I elevated the service. 60’s. It certainly led to its golden age and to his efforts to raise the profile of the art of cinema at AFI.As a filmmaker himself, he holds an extraordinary high regard for his father George Stevens. Produced an acclaimed documentary. A filmmaker’s journey (which Warren Beatty told him was the best thing ever made about a filmmaker), and also made a document about his father’s war experiences. George Stephens: D-Day to Berlin. Thurgood Marshall Television Biography, separate but equal Broadway, starring Sidney Poitier he wrote, Thurgood, Successful stage run.

There are many fascinating anecdotes and encounters here, but at the heart of it, like those documentaries, is his relationship with his father, which defines the son that leads him to his unique success. At its core is how it has helped


I had the opportunity to have lunch with Stevens and was honored to hear that even at 90 he still remembered perfectly what a wonderful life he had. I asked him why he decided to write this book now, and I specifically quoted him back the definition of George Stephens Jr., which Annette Bening had given him when he was awarded that prestigious Oscar. . A benevolent tyrant, artist, writer, and leader.”then which one he do you think it’s him?

“Well, I think that’s what makes me happy with this book. I’ve heard a lot in my life say things like, ‘You started AFI,’ or ‘You won an honorary award at the Kennedy Center.’ I often do, but as Annette said, there are so many different sides to my life. ordered,” he said. “And I was thinking, I wasn’t discussing this, I was talking about this, idea I’m kind of introspective about it… never been to a psychiatrist. It’s always been one thing after another, so the idea of ​​doing this and arranging my life was fun. ”

One of the life lessons he learned from going to the 1952 Oscar ceremony where his father won Best Director in 1951 A Place in the Sun Reading the book was a particular highlight for me. Stevens said:

George Stevens AMPAS

“You know, when I went to the Oscars with my dad, he drove the car. sat down, and Joseph Mankiewicz came out, probably the previous year’s winner, and he read the nominees.John Huston african queenWilliam Wyler detective story, Vincent Minnelli american in parisElia Kazan A Streetcar Named Desireand George Stevens A Place in the Sun.

“And when I got home, this was something I remembered and didn’t really care about at the time. I just remember what my dad said as we drove home. He looked at me. “In about 25 years, we will have a better idea of ​​what this is like,” he said.

“You know, he grew up in the theater and never finished high school, but he educated himself by reading O’Neill and knew it. This was before DVD.” I knew he was talking about the test of time, it was 1952. He didn’t know he was talking to the future founder of the American Film Institute. Like, that idea was at the core of AFI, save the movie, the Lifetime Achievement Award, the test of time, so you have these experiences in your life, but remember, that if how important it was for me.

Stevens really seems to have cloned himself during all his time on both coasts.In fact, when Steven Spielberg read the book, he thought he was Zelig. But where is this man? “I’m comfortable in both places. I know this is where I was born at Hollywood Hospital for God’s sake,” he laughed. , both required me to be in both places.

He points to another life lesson from his father. best story ever And he took the opportunity presented by Murrow at the USIA. “At the time, I was in the film as a valuable ally in a very ambitious undertaking, so it was his father who realized his own great inconvenience, but you know, he gave me , father it wasn’t his I was interested my I was curious, and he understood better than I did at the time that it might be the best thing for me,” Stephens recalled.

2010 Kennedy Center Honors CBS

In creating the Kennedy Center Honors Awards, which do not require the recipient to give a speech, he cited another life lesson he used to write this book. He calls it the Cary Grant Law. This is because Kaley never accepts an award if she has to give a speech, so no one had to speak or act. He never accepted an AFI award,” he said. “Also, I didn’t think people had to sing for dinner. does not need to say a word.

But now as I write this book, I also had another Cary Grant law. I said, “Unless there’s a really good story about Cary Grant, he won’t be in this book.” There are a lot of people that I care about a lot and that were important to me, but you know, those stories never came up. But now my life is a combination of Hollywood and the people I know, doing 37 years of the Kennedy Center Honors, honoring 188 of the greatest artists of our time, and being political in Washington. I noticed that you honored the house, Liz (his wife). And I have a very wide circle of acquaintances and friends, and that’s what this book is about, and we’re lucky enough to be able to write about it. ”

What’s next for the profession he points out that cherishes youth?

“You know, I have a few things I want to do. It was from Bertram Russell. The pros and cons of being 90He wrote, “The long habit of working with some purpose that you believe is important is a hard habit to break.” And you know, I didn’t have a project. I mean, some of those things happen.

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