Sidney J Furie
The career of Canadian filmmaker Sidney J Furie perfectly demonstrates how a reputation for workmanlike efficiency can keep a director regularly employed, despite a dearth of critical acclaim. Furie decided he wanted to be a filmmaker when he was six years old, after seeing his first film, "Captains Courageous" (1937), and showed early promise in his native Canada with his directing debut, the autobiographical "A Dangerous Age" (1957), and as creator of the series "Hudson's Bay" (CBC, 1959). After moving to Great Britain in 1960, he dabbled in the horror genre ("Doctor Blood's Coffin" and "The Snake Woman", both 1961) and helmed "Three on a Spree" (also 1961), yet another remake of "Brewster's Millions", before experiencing his first big success with the teen musical "Wonderful to Be Young/The Young Ones" (1962), which boasted the choreography of Herbert Ross and enjoyed a box office in England that year second only to "Dr. Who". It was, however, the mean-street melodrama "The Leather Boys" which demonstrated his sharp eye for sleazy detail and brought Furie to the attention of producer Harry Saltzman, who hired him to direct "The Ipcress File" (1965), the first and best of Len Deighton's Harry Palmer spy series.