Randal Kleiser

Director, Producer, Screenwriter
Former TV director ("Marcus Welby, M. D.," "Starsky & Hutch") Randal Kleiser struck lucky at the box-office with his first feature, "Grease" (1978),and then directed another teen-friendly yet mainstream film, "The Blue ... Read more »
Born: 07/19/1946 in Lebanon, Pennsylvania, USA

Filmography

Director (21)

Red Riding Hood 2014 (Movie)

(Director)

Lovewrecked 2006 - 2007 (TV Show)

Director

It's My Party 1996 (Movie)

(Director)

Marcus Welby, M.D. 1969 - 1976, 1995 - 1996 (Tv Show)

Director

New York News 1995 - 1996 (Tv Show)

Director

Starsky and Hutch 1969 - 1979, 1995 - 1996 (Tv Show)

Director

All Together Now 1994 - 1995 (TV Show)

Director

Honey, I Blew Up the Kid 1992 (Movie)

(Director)

White Fang 1991 (Movie)

(Director)

Getting It Right 1989 (Movie)

(Director)

Big Top Pee-Wee 1988 (Movie)

(Director)

Flight of the Navigator 1986 (Movie)

(Director)

Grandview, U.S.A. 1984 (Movie)

(Director)

Summer Lovers 1982 (Movie)

(Director)

The Blue Lagoon 1980 (Movie)

(Director)

Grease 1978 (Movie)

(Director)

The Gathering 1977 - 1978 (TV Show)

Director

Portrait of Grandpa Doc (TV Show)

Director

Shadow of Doubt (TV Show)

Director

The Boy in the Plastic Bubble (TV Show)

Director
Actor (5)

My Life With Count Dracula 2014 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

George Lucas: Creating an Empire 2001 - 2002 (TV Show)

Actor

Crazy in Alabama 1999 (Movie)

Bob (Actor)

Susan's Plan 1998 - 1999 (TV Show)

Actor

Rich and Famous 1981 (Movie)

Literary Party Guest (Actor)
Producer (5)

It's My Party 1996 (Movie)

(Producer)

Return to the Blue Lagoon 1991 (Movie)

(Executive Producer)

Getting It Right 1989 (Movie)

(Producer)

North Shore 1987 (Movie)

(Executive Producer)

The Blue Lagoon 1980 (Movie)

(Producer)
Writer (4)

It's My Party 1996 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

North Shore 1987 (Movie)

(From Story)

Summer Lovers 1982 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Street People 1975 (Movie)

(Screenplay)

Biography

Former TV director ("Marcus Welby, M. D.," "Starsky & Hutch") Randal Kleiser struck lucky at the box-office with his first feature, "Grease" (1978),and then directed another teen-friendly yet mainstream film, "The Blue Lagoon" (1980).

The Pennsylvania native moved to Southern California to attend USC. To finance his education, he began to work as a model and actor, appearing in commercials and as an extra in big-budgeted movie musicals like "Camelot" (1967) and "Hello, Dolly!" (1969). After receiving a master's degree in film, he made short films ("Peege" 1973, "Foot Fetish" 1974) before segueing to series TV. Kleiser began directing TV-movies with "All Together Now" (ABC, 1975), a docudrama about orphans, and went on to helm "Dawn: Portrait of a Teenage Runaway" (NBC, 1976), with Eve Plumb (of "The Brady Bunch") as a young girl sucked into teen prostitution. Kleiser also directed John Travolta in his first TV-movie, the touching "The Boy in the Plastic Bubble" (ABC, 1976) and garnered an Emmy nomination for the award-winning holiday-themed "The Gathering" (ABC, 1977), which featured Edward Asner as a dying man trying to make amends with his estranged family.

"Grease" (1978), a film adaptation of a long-running Broadway musical, was a fantasy version of the 1950s teen musicals. Kleiser seamlessly interwove the film's musical numbers with the plot machinations and elicited a strong performance from leading man John Travolta. The exuberant, if somewhat derivative, film proved to be a box office hit. Kleiser followed with "The Blue Lagoon" (1980), starring Brooke Shields and Christopher Atkins. Despite its rather trite story, it, too, proved to be a success at the box office. Gorgeously shot by cinematographer Nestor Almendros, "The Blue Lagoon" was a cool film, in part due to Kleiser's direction of the slightly improbable material. Audiences went to the film to see its stars cavorting in the sun and sand.

After his big screen successes, Kleiser hit a lull with such forgettable efforts as "Grandview USA" (1984) and "Flight of the Navigator" (1986). The quirky sequel, "Big Top Pee-wee" (1988), had some comic moments, but, overall, was not as popular as the other Paul Reubens' big-screen effort. By the 1990s, Kleiser's feature film work perked up. "White Fang" (1991) was well-received by critics and the sequel "Honey, I Blew Up the Kid" (1992) won a modest box office. But "Return to the Blue Lagoon" (1991) failed to duplicate the spirit or success of its original.

The openly gay Kleiser chose to film a far more personal project, based upon his relationship with his lover who, suffering from complications from AIDS, chose to end his life. The result was "It's My Party" (1996), starring Eric Roberts, Gregory Harrison, Bronson Pinchot, Margaret Cho, and Olivia Newton-John, was well-received at several film festivals, including Sundance.

Relationships

John Raymond Kleiser

Father

Harriet Kelly Kleiser

Mother

Jeffrey Kleiser

Brother
born September 9, 1954

Harry Stein

Companion
met on the set of "Summer Lovers" in 1982 together until 1990 committed suicide in 1993 because he was suffering from complications from AIDS born c. 1954

EDUCATION

School of Cinema-Television, University of Southern California

Los Angeles , California 1974

University of Southern California

Los Angeles , California 1964

Milestones

2005

Directed Amanda Bynes and Chris Carmack in the romantic comedy "Love Wrecked"

2004

Directed "Red Riding Hood," starring Henry Cavill, Morgan Thompson, and Debi Mazar

1999

Served as director of a pilot for an Internet series "Royal Standards" for Digital Entertainment Network

1999

Minor acting role in the comedy drama "Crazy in Alabama"

1996

Directed autobiographical feature "It's My Party"

1980

Helmed second feature, "The Blue Lagoon"

1978

Feature film directorial debut "Grease"

1977

Directed the acclaimed TV-movie, "The Gathering"

1976

First produced script, "Street People"

1975

TV-movie directorial debut, "All Together Now"

1973

Directed episodes of TV series "Marcus Welby, MD"

1973

Made short film "Peege"

Bonus Trivia

.

On "It's My Party": "Even if it were only on Super 8 with a bunch of actors at the house, I just had to do it." Kleiser to THE ADVOCATE, February 6, 1996

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"I've never hidden being gay. And I've never pretended to be straight."

.

"Randal makes everyone feel calm and comfortable like no other director I've ever worked with. He has a quiet control of the set, and because of that things are tension-free." --Olivia Newton-John

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