William Wyler

Director, Publicity writer, Screenwriter
Few film directors demonstrated the depth, range, longevity, and sensitivity that William Wyler served up on the American silver screen over his decades-long career. Having made a number of silent pictures in the 1920s ... Read more »
Born: 07/01/1902 in Germany

Filmography

Director (32)

The Liberation of L.B. Jones 1970 (Movie)

(Director)

Funny Girl 1968 (Movie)

(Director)

How to Steal a Million 1966 (Movie)

(Director)

The Collector 1965 (Movie)

(Director)

The Children's Hour 1961 (Movie)

(Director)

Ben-Hur 1959 (Movie)

(Director)

The Big Country 1958 (Movie)

(Director)

Friendly Persuasion 1956 (Movie)

(Director)

The Desperate Hours 1955 (Movie)

(Director)

Roman Holiday 1953 (Movie)

(Director)

Detective Story 1951 (Movie)

(Director)

The Heiress 1949 (Movie)

(Director)

The Best Years of Our Lives 1946 (Movie)

(Director)

Mrs. Miniver 1942 (Movie)

(Director)

The Little Foxes 1940 (Movie)

(Director)

Wuthering Heights 1939 (Movie)

(Director)

Jezebel 1937 (Movie)

(Director)

Come and Get It 1936 (Movie)

(Director)

Dead End 1936 (Movie)

(Director)

Dodsworth 1935 (Movie)

(Director)

These Three 1935 (Movie)

(Director)

The Good Fairy 1934 (Movie)

(Director)

Glamour (Movie)

(Director)

Gun Justice (Movie)

(Director)

Hell's Heroes (Movie)

(Director)

Her First Mate (Movie)

(Director)

The Gay Deception (Movie)

(Director)

The Letter (Movie)

(Director)

The Storm (Movie)

(Director)

The Westerner (Movie)

(Director)

Thunderbolt (Movie)

(Director)

Tom Brown of Culver (Movie)

(Director)
Producer (7)

The Children's Hour 1961 (Movie)

(Producer)

The Big Country 1958 (Movie)

(Producer)

Friendly Persuasion 1956 (Movie)

(Producer)

The Desperate Hours 1955 (Movie)

(Producer)

Roman Holiday 1953 (Movie)

(Producer)

Detective Story 1951 (Movie)

(Producer)

The Heiress 1949 (Movie)

(Producer)
Actor (1)

Directed By William Wyler 1988 (Movie)

Himself (Actor)

Biography

Few film directors demonstrated the depth, range, longevity, and sensitivity that William Wyler served up on the American silver screen over his decades-long career. Having made a number of silent pictures in the 1920s, Wyler emerged in the talkie era as a director of respectable adaptations of plays and literary works like "These Three" (1936) and "Come and Get It" (1936). But it was his collaboration with actress Bette Davis - which was punctuated by an on-again, off-again romance - that elevated his career to the next level, starting with "Jezebel" (1938). He went on to earn Academy Award nominations for "Wuthering Heights" (1939), "The Letter" (1941) and "The Little Foxes" (1941), before winning his first Oscar for "Mrs. Miniver" (1942). Following a brief sojourn to Europe to film "The Memphis Belle" (1944) for the war effort, Wyler earned greater acclaim for with "The Best Years of Our Lives" (1946) and "The Heiress" (1949) before embarking on a string of well-received genre films, covering film noir, Westerns and romantic comedy. He had his grandest achievement with "Ben-Hur" (1959), an epic in every sense of the word that earned 11 Academy Awards. Wyler wound down his career in the next decade, helming hits like "How to Steal a Million" (1966) and "Funny Girl" (1968) before calling it a career in 1970. When he did, Wyler had cemented his place as a legendary director whose greatness spanned decades.

Relationships

Robert Wyler

Brother

Bette Davis Actor

Companion
began on-again, off-again relationship in the late 1930s collaborated on three films together: "Jezebel" (1938), "The Lettter" (1940) and "The Little Foxes" (1941)

Margaret Sullavan Actor

Wife
Married on Nobermber 11, 1934 divorced on March 13, 1936

Margaret Tallichet Actor

Husband

Margaret Tallichet

Wife
married from 1938 until his death died on May 3, 1991

Catherine Wyler

Daughter
born on July 25, 1939 was executive producer of documentary "William Wyler Directs" (1986) and producer of "Memphis Belle" (1990) mother Margaret Tallichet

Judith Wyler

Daughter
born on May 21, 1942 mother, Margaret Tallichet

Melanie Wyler

Daughter
born on November 25, 1950 mother Margaret Tallichet

David Wyler

Son
mother, Margaret Tallichet in late 1970s worked as assistant director and production assistant on some films

EDUCATION

Paris Conservatoire

Paris
studied occasionally over several months

L'Ecole Superieure de Commerce

Milestones

1941

Served in England with US Air Force during WWII; produced, wrote and co-photographed documentary, "Memphis Belle" (1944) and co-directed (with John Sturges) documentary "Thunderbolt" (1945); discharged as lieutenant colonel

1936

Left Universal; began working for independent producer Samuel Goldwyn; first collaboration with cinematographer Gregg Toland

1925

Film directing debut at age 23, "Crook Busters"

1923

First film as assistant director, "The Hunchback of Notre Dame"

1922

Immigrated to USA

1921

Transferred to Universal City, Hollywood

1920

Invited to US by cousing Carl Laemmle, head of Universal Studios

Began career at Universal Studios, New York as shipping clerk; then worked in foreign publicity

Bonus Trivia

.

He received the Air Medal after serving with US bomber troops in England.

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Under his direction, a record 35 actors received Oscar nominations and 13 won the award (14, if you count supporting actor Oscar winner Walter Brennan in "Come and Get It", co-directed by Wyler and Howard Hawks).

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