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Thread: Stanley Kramer - Director

  1. #1
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    Stanley Kramer - Director

    An Academy Award winning American film director and producer responsible for some of Hollywood's most famous "message" movies.
    Kramer produced Home of the Brave (1949), which was another success for the budding producer. In 1950, he produced The Men, which included Marlon Brando's screen debut.
    Harry Cohn, the president of Columbia Pictures offered Kramer the chance to make movies under his studio. While Kramer accepted the job, he spent the rest of the year (1950) finishing his last independent production, the film High Noon, a Western drama directed by Fred Zinnemann. The movie was well received, winning four Oscars.
    In October 1951, Kramer ended his partnership with Carl Foreman, who was asked to testify about his past involvement with the Communist Party. Kramer was still producing movies at Columbia, such as Death of a Salesman (1951), The Sniper (1952), The Member of the Wedding (1952), The Juggler (1953), The Wild One (1953) and The 5,000 Fingers of Dr. T (1953).
    In 1953 the president of Columbia, Harry Cohn and Stanley Kramer agreed to terminate the five year contract Kramer had made to Columbia. However, for his last Columbia film, Kramer was determined to regain all of the investments Columbia had made in Kramer's previously unsuccessful films. The film, The Caine Mutiny, was an adaptation of the book written by Herman Wouk. The film's cast included multiple noted actors of the time, including Humphrey Bogart , Van Johnson , Fred MacMurray and Jose Ferrer. Cohn kept Kramer under tight limitations, such as a budget under two and half million dollars and a running time of two hours. The result was extremely successful. The eleven million dollars it generated made up for any of Kramer's lost profits previously.
    After The Caine Mutiny, Kramer left Columbia and resumed his independent production, but this time he occupied the role of the director. During this time, Kramer reestablished himself through Not As a Stranger (1955) and The Pride and the Passion (1957). Fortunately for Kramer, he was able to avoid the Hollywood blacklist, which had affected so many other members of the film industry. However, Kramer was well known for his liberal views and his desire to produce and direct controversial films. He directed The Defiant Ones (1958), On the Beach (1959), Inherit the Wind (1960) and Judgment at Nuremberg (1961). All of the films were bold and dealt with uncomfortable and serious subjects.
    In contrast to his previous films however, in 1963 Kramer produced and directed the multi-million dollar, all-star comedy It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World . Four years later, in 1967, Kramer released Guess Who's Coming to Dinner. The film starred Sidney Poitier and Katharine Houghton and the final screen teaming of Katharine Hepburn and Spencer Tracy. The film was a hit, earning eight Academy Award nominations.
    In 1997 Kramer published his autobiography, entitled A Mad Mad Mad Mad World: A Life in Hollywood. Stanley Kramer died on February 19th, 2001 in Los Angeles after suffering from pneumonia.

  2. #2
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    I love Stanley Kramer's films...and he directed what is, imo, the funniest of all time: "It's A Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World."

    ANYtime I'm down, all I have to do is pull out that movie and watch it.
    It's like "anti-blues" medication!

    For any other fans out there, a collection of his films just came out, and it's wonderful:

    http://www.amazon.com/Stanley-Kramer...5818773&sr=8-1



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    I heard it was more like a bit/dare that he could not direct a straight comedy film? I Have watched a few of his stuff. Did he direct any other comedy's besides "Its a mad, mad, mad, mad, world?"

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    Quote Originally Posted by Danny62 View Post
    I heard it was more like a bit/dare that he could not direct a straight comedy film? I Have watched a few of his stuff. Did he direct any other comedy's besides "Its a mad, mad, mad, mad, world?"
    I don't believe he did anything else in the slapstick mold like this one--too bad, he was GOOD at it!



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    Quote Originally Posted by Jack-O-Lantern View Post
    I don't believe he did anything else in the slapstick mold like this one--too bad, he was GOOD at it!
    Boy in one of my old Filmfax magazines they did an interview with him. It was pretty interesting. Like I said I think he took this on more as a dare to prove he could do comedy directing.

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    It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World was epic. We need more movies like that today.

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    Four M World .... entertaining and rapid paced. Loved it that he put an all star cast to the film. I haven't seen Burn After Reading yet ...but wonder if the Cohen Bros might have captured this type of comedic film.

  8. #8
    Did you hear that last year they were talking about doing a sequel to "It's A Mad,Mad,Mad Mad World...please I hope they don't do it. They also did a piece of rubbish rip off of it called "Rat Race".

    I last heard about it last year so it could be a dead project by now.

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    Eeek .... an attempt at a, "Hollywood upgrade." The film, The Women, is a good example of ...think again, it might not work.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ajlposh View Post
    It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World was epic. We need more movies like that today.

    I couldn't agree more...that movie was great!

  11. #11
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    I'm watching the 40th anniversary edition of one of my favorite films, "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner", by Stanley Kramer. It's got great actors and a great script written during a tumultuous time. The film was considered controversial when it was released during the Civil Rights movement, but Kramer was well-known disregarding convention in favor of the greater good.

    What I love about this edition, besides the obvious, are the special features: introductions by Steven Spielberg, Tom Brokaw, and many others. There's also a second disc of more special features.

    I miss the days of Hepburn and Tracy, and the ingenuity and style of the young and handsome Sidney Poitier. Most of all, films like this remind me that recycling is for bottles and cans--not ingenious, beautiful movies. We need more original films that are engaging, funny, and dramatic all at once, Hollywood.
    .

    "There will be no spectacular ending for this mess when it happens " (Mansfield67, 2019).

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by SomeChick View Post
    I'm watching the 40th anniversary edition of one of my favorite films, "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner", by Stanley Kramer. It's got great actors and a great script written during a tumultuous time. The film was considered controversial when it was released during the Civil Rights movement, but Kramer was well-known disregarding convention in favor of the greater good.

    What I love about this edition, besides the obvious, are the special features: introductions by Steven Spielberg, Tom Brokaw, and many others. There's also a second disc of more special features.

    I miss the days of Hepburn and Tracy, and the ingenuity and style of the young and handsome Sidney Poitier. Most of all, films like this remind me that recycling is for bottles and cans--not ingenious, beautiful movies. We need more original films that are engaging, funny, and dramatic all at once, Hollywood.
    Very true, Thank You for Turner Classic movie channels etc..
    I for one enjoy old films.
    Carolyn(1958-2009) always in my heart.

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