David Lynch

Director, Screenwriter, Producer
Much like his body of work, David Lynch often defied tidy description. As a filmmaker it was possibly more instructive to refer to him as a surrealist artist working in the medium of film, rather than a traditional ... Read more »
Born: 01/20/1946 in Missoula, Montana, USA

Filmography

Actor (24)

A Fall From Grace 2014 (Movie)

(Actor)

Brand: A Second Coming 2014 (Movie)

(Himself)

Harry Dean Stanton: Partly Fiction 2013 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

The Cleveland Show 2010 - 2013 (Tv Show)

Voice

Louie 2012 (Tv Show)

Actor

Side by Side 2012 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

Great Directors 2010 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

Elvis: Viva Las Vegas 2007 - 2008 (TV Show)

Actor

Lynch 2007 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

The 2007 Film Independent's Spirit Awards 2006 - 2007 (TV Show)

Actor

Dennis Hopper: The Decisive Moments 2003 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

Words In Progress 2003 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

AFI Awards 2001 2001 - 2002 (TV Show)

Actor

Ann Miller: I'm Still Here 1999 - 2000 (TV Show)

Actor

Little Jimmy Scott 1998 - 1999 (TV Show)

Actor

Nadja 1995 (Movie)

Morgue Attendant (Actor)

Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me 1992 (Movie)

Gordon Cole (Actor)

Dennis Hopper 1990 - 1991 (TV Show)

Actor

Twin Peaks & Cop Rock: Behind the Scenes 1990 - 1991 (TV Show)

Actor

Hollywood Mavericks 1990 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

The Siskel & Ebert Special 1989 - 1990 (TV Show)

Actor

Zelly and Me 1988 (Movie)

Willie (Actor)

The Grandmother 1969 (Movie)

(Actor)
Director (19)

Twin Peaks 2016 - 2017 (TV Show)

Director

Duran Duran: Unstaged 2014 (Movie)

(Director)

Inland Empire 2006 (Movie)

(Director)

Mulholland Drive 2001 (Movie)

(Director)

Rabbits 2001 (Movie)

(Director)

The Straight Story 1999 (Movie)

(Director)

Lost Highway 1997 (Movie)

(Director)

Lumiere Et Compagnie 1995 (Movie)

featured director (Director)

Hotel Room 1992 - 1993 (TV Show)

Director

Dangerous 1991 - 1992 (TV Show)

Segment Director

Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me 1992 (Movie)

(Director)

American Chronicles 1990 - 1991 (Tv Show)

Segment Director

Wild At Heart 1990 (Movie)

(Director)

Blue Velvet 1986 (Movie)

(Director)

Dune 1984 (Movie)

(Director)

The Elephant Man 1980 (Movie)

(Director)

Eraserhead 1978 (Movie)

(Director)

The Grandmother 1969 (Movie)

(Director)

The Alphabet 1967 (Movie)

(Director)
Sound (14)

Inland Empire 2006 (Movie)

(Sound Designer)

Inland Empire 2006 (Movie)

(Rerecording Mixer)

Mulholland Drive 2001 (Movie)

(Rerecording Mixer)

Mulholland Drive 2001 (Movie)

(Sound Design)

Mulholland Drive 2001 (Movie)

(Sound Designer)

The Straight Story 1999 (Movie)

(Sound Designer)

Lost Highway 1997 (Movie)

(Sound Design)

Lost Highway 1997 (Movie)

re-recording mixer (Rerecording)

Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me 1992 (Movie)

(Sound Designer)

Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me 1992 (Movie)

(Rerecording Mixer)

The Elephant Man 1980 (Movie)

(Sound Design)

Eraserhead 1978 (Movie)

(Sound Effects)

The Grandmother 1969 (Movie)

(Sound Effects)

The Alphabet 1967 (Movie)

(Sound)
Producer (13)

Repo Chick 2011 (Movie)

(Executive Producer)

My Son, My Son, What Have Ye Done 2009 (Movie)

(Executive Producer)

Surveillance 2009 (Movie)

(Executive Producer)

Inland Empire 2006 (Movie)

(Producer)

Crumb 1995 (Movie)

("presents") (Producer)

Nadja 1995 (Movie)

(Executive Producer)

Nova 1990 - 1991, 1993 - 1994 (Tv Show)

Producer

Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me 1992 (Movie)

(Executive Producer)

The Cabinet of Dr. Ramirez 1991 (Movie)

(Executive Producer)

Eraserhead 1978 (Movie)

(Producer)

The Grandmother 1969 (Movie)

(Producer)

On the Air (TV Show)

Executive Producer

Twin Peaks (TV Show)

Executive Producer
Music (11)

Surveillance 2009 (Movie)

("Speed Roadster") (Song Performer)

Surveillance 2009 (Movie)

("Speed Roadster") (Song)

Inland Empire 2006 (Movie)

("Ghost Of Love") (Song Performer)

Inland Empire 2006 (Movie)

("Polish Poem") (Song)

Mulholland Drive 2001 (Movie)

Additional Music Composer (Music)

Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me 1992 (Movie)

songs("She Would Die For Love" "A Real Indication" "Blue Frank" "Falling" "Deer Meadow Shuffle" "Questions in a World of Blue" "The Black Dog Runs at Night" "The Pink Room" "Sycamore Trees" "Double R Swing" "Best Friends") (Song)

Wild At Heart 1990 (Movie)

("Up in Flames") (Song)

Weeds 1987 (Movie)

("Mysteries of Love") (Song)

Blue Velvet 1986 (Movie)

lyrics("Blue Star" "Mysteries of Love") (Theme Lyrics)

Eraserhead 1978 (Movie)

lyrics("In Heaven (Everything Is Fine)") (Theme Lyrics)

The Alphabet 1967 (Movie)

("Alphabet Song") (Song Performer)
Writer (11)

Inland Empire 2006 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Mulholland Drive 2001 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Lost Highway 1997 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me 1992 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Wild At Heart 1990 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Blue Velvet 1986 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Dune 1984 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

The Elephant Man 1980 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Eraserhead 1978 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

The Grandmother 1969 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

The Alphabet 1967 (Movie)

(Screenplay)
Editor (4)

Inland Empire 2006 (Movie)

(Editor)

Eraserhead 1978 (Movie)

(Editor)

The Grandmother 1969 (Movie)

(Editor)

The Alphabet 1967 (Movie)

(Editor)
Camera, Film, & Tape (3)

Inland Empire 2006 (Movie)

(Camera Operator)

The Grandmother 1969 (Movie)

(Photography)

The Alphabet 1967 (Movie)

(Photography)
Visual Effects & Animation (2)

Eraserhead 1978 (Movie)

(Special Effects)

The Grandmother 1969 (Movie)

(Animator)
Art Department (2)

Eraserhead 1978 (Movie)

(Production Designer)

The Alphabet 1967 (Movie)

(Production Designer)
Other (1)

Inland Empire 2006 (Movie)

(Construction)

Biography

Much like his body of work, David Lynch often defied tidy description. As a filmmaker it was possibly more instructive to refer to him as a surrealist artist working in the medium of film, rather than a traditional movie director and writer. With his first self-produced film "Eraserhead" (1978), it was clear that Lynch held a deep fascination with the utterly grotesque residing just below the surface of the everyday. He would use that fascination to his advantage with his second film, the hugely successful "The Elephant Man" (1980), only to be dealt a bitter blow by the disastrous, costly experience of "Dune" (1984). However, with the quasi-autobiographical thriller "Blue Velvet" (1986), Lynch would establish a thematic aesthetic - dubbed "Lynchian" - that he would continue to evolve throughout his career. He also had tremendous, albeit brief, success in television with the series "Twin Peaks" (ABC, 1989-1991), a murder mystery that temporarily tapped into the American zeitgeist. In the wake of the series' end, there were missteps and disappointments for Lynch, such as the exceedingly violent "Wild at Heart" (1990) and the almost universally reviled "Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me" (1992). And yet, Lynch's resolve to make his films his way remained resolute. As did his ability to confound and surprise audiences, exemplified by films like the truly mind-bending "Lost Highway" (1997) and the heartfelt "The Straight Story" (1999). Moving into the 21st Century, Lynch continued to defy conventions - as well as traditional narrative structure - with films like "Mulholland Dr." (2001), even as he contributed voice work for a cartoon sitcom, delivered the daily Los Angeles weather report on his personal web site, and filmed an info-movie for Christian Dior - very Lynchian, indeed.

Relationships

Mary Fisk

Wife
Married June 21, 1977 Divorced Aug. 29, 1987

Jennifer Lynch Director

Daughter
Born April 7, 1968; mother, Peggy Lynch

Austin Lynch Director

Son
Born Sept. 7, 1982; mother, Mary Fisk

Donald Lynch

Father

Peggy Lynch Director

Wife
Married 1967 Divorced 1974 She appeared in his film "Eraserhead" (1977)

Riley Lynch Director

Son
Born 1992; mother, Mary Sweeney

Sunny Lynch

Mother

John Lynch

Brother
Younger

Margaret Lynch Director

Sister
Younger; was a screenplay consultant and provided sound effects for brother's short film "The Grandmother" (1970)

Isabella Rossellini Actor

Companion
Lynch directed Rossellini in "Blue Velvet" (1986) Together from 1986-1991

Mary Sweeney Actor

Wife
Collaborated in "Twin Peaks" series and film, "Lost Highway" (1997), and "Mulholland Dr." (2001) Married May 10, 2006 Filed for divorce in June 2006, one month after getting married Divorced Feb. 12, 2007

EDUCATION

Corcoran School of Art

Washington , Washington D.C. 1963 - 1964

attended high school in Alexandria, Virginia; graduated in 1964; Jack Fisk was a classmate

Center For Advanced Film Studies, American Film Institute

Los Angeles , California 1970 - 1972
Graduated 1972

went with Jack Fisk to study painting in Europe with Oskar Kokoschka; lasted two weeks (1965)

Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts

Philadelphia , Pennsylvania 1965 - 1967
attended with Jack Fisk

Boston Museum School

Boston , Massachusetts 1964 - 1965

Milestones

2010

Lent his voice to the character Gus on the Fox animated series "Family Guy" and spin-off "The Cleveland Show"

2009

Executive produced Werner Herzog's crime drama "My Son, My Son, What Have Ye Done"

2006

Directed "Inland Empire," starring regulars such as Laura Dern, Harry Dean Stanton, and Justin Theroux; film shot entirely in digital format

2002

Created a series of online shorts "Dumb Land," which were intentionally crude both in content and execution; the eight-episode series was later released on DVD

2002

Helmed "Rabbits," an 8-episode series of short videos shown exclusively on DavidLynch.com for paying members

1999

Helmed the pilot "Mulholland Drive" for ABC; series not picked up; Lynch received additional funding from StudioCanal and shot more footage to create a feature film; premiered at Cannes in 2001 where it shared the Best Director trophy; (released theatrica

1999

Directed the atypically based-on-fact "The Straight Story," about a man who drove a tractor from Iowa to Wisconsin to reunite with his estranged brother

1997

Ran off the road with "Lost Highway," a great-looking but senseless, overlong, post-modern hybrid of film noir and "The Twilight Zone"

1997

Helmed TV commercial for the home pregnancy test Clear Blue Easy

1994

Executive produced "Nadja" (and played a small part as Morgue Attendant)

1994

Presented the documentary "Crumb," an extraordinarily intimate portrait of underground comic artist Robert Crumb directed by Terry Zwigoff

1993

Created, executive produced, and directed "Blackout" and Tricks" episodes of HBO's "Hotel Room"

1992

Served as creator, executive producer, and director of the premiere of ABC's short-lived (six episodes) "On the Air"

1992

Made television commercials for Gio, the perfume by Armani(1992), for a coffee drink Coca-Cola markets in Japan (1993), and for Alka-Seltzer Plus (1993); also directed a teaser-trailer used to market Michael Jackson's "Dangerous" album

1992

Returned to "Twin Peaks" land with feature "Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me" (also co-executive producer); wrote 11 songs

1991

Directed the music video for Chris Isaak's song "Wicked Game"; song featured in the soundtrack to "Wild at Heart"

1991

Executive produced "The Cabinet of Dr. Ramirez"

1990

Created and directed episodes of popular TV series "Twin Peaks" (ABC)

1990

"Wild at Heart" won the prestigious Palme d'Or Award at Cannes Film Festival but met with critical disfavor in the U.S.; last feature collaboration (to date) with Frederick Elmes

1990

Directed TV commercials for the perfumes Opium and Obsession

1989

Composed musical work "Industrial Symphony No. 1" with Angelo Badalamenti; performed at the Brooklyn Academy of Music in November; made video in 1990

1987

Won acclaim (and second Best Director Oscar nomination) for the controversial "Blue Velvet"

1987

Wrote and presented documentary on Dadaist cinema "Ruth roses and revolver" for British TV series "Arena"

1987

Produced and wrote for singers Julee Cruise and Koko Taylor (songs used in his films "Blue Velvet" and "Wild at Heart")

1984

First project with actor Kyle MacLachlan, "Dune"; feeling like "I had sort of sold myself out," Lynch later forced the removal of his name from the film's credits

1983

Created and illustrated syndicated comic strip "The Angriest Dog in the World"

1980

Earned first Oscar nomination as Best Director for "The Elephant Man"; also nominated for Best Adapted Screenplay (co-written with Eric Bergren and Christopher DeVore)

1977

"Eraserhead" released

1970

Began working on first feature "Eraserhead"; first feature collaboration with cinematographer Frederick Elmes and actor Jack Nance

1969

Made first short live-action film "The Grandmother"; received grants that totaled $5,000 by American Film Institute (completed film for $7,200)

1967

Made short film combining animation and live action, "The Alphabet" as entry in Pennsylvania Academy contest

1966

First film, a one-minute color animated loop entitled "Six Men Getting Sick" shown on three skull-shaped screens (based on Lynch's head) to the accompaniment of a siren (date approximate)

Worked as shop assistant, engineer, janitor, newspaper deliverer, in between studies

As a child, lived in Sandpointe and Boise, ID, Spokane, WA, and Alexandria, VA

Bonus Trivia

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When Lynch was a child, his father used to drive him into the deep woods, drop him off, then go to his job as a scientist for the Forest Service. He would leave young David completely alone, surrounded, as the filmmaker once told Time magazine, by "the most beautiful forests, where the trees are very tall and shafts of sunlight come down in the mountain stream and the rainbow trout leap out."

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Lynch's interest in furniture making started at an early age, when he hung around his father's wood shop, learning how to use tools and mastering the fundamentals of building. Though he often built furniture for his movies, his first professional efforts at marketing his furniture came in the early 1990s when he sold a tiny expresso table (priced at $600) through Skankworld, a vintage furniture store in Los Angeles. He showed his attractive Club Table, an effective marraige of wood and steel, which comes with special recessed areas to hold drinks, at the prestigious Salone Del Mobile in Milan and had an agreement with a Swiss Company to produce his pieces on a limited basis.

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About the failure of "Wild at Heart" and "Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me": "When you love something and feel you've done it correctly, then negative criticism doesn't hurt so bad. I love those movies. But in order to say you're successful, a film has to make quite a lot of money, and I haven't really done that. If I was successful in that way, I'd be...I don't know, making pictures maybe more within the system." – Lynch to Rolling Stone, March 6, 1997

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Lynch launched a members-only web site at www.davidlynch.com in December 2001.

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He served as president of the jury at the 2002 Cannes Film Festival.

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Lynch, along with Mel Brooks, received an honorary degree from the American Film Institute on June 13, 2012.

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