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Wild Bill: Hollywood Maverick - The Life and Times of William A. Wellman
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Well-directed by Todd Robinson, the movie goes through Wellman’s life from beginning to end, starting with his birth on February 29, 1896, in Massachusetts, and how he spent his early years as a decorated fighter pilot during World War I. It was there that he got nicknamed Wild Bill. Some time later, famous actor Douglas Fairbanks, impressed by Wellman’s talents, got him an acting job in “The Knickerbocker Buckaroo,” but Bill realized that he did not liked acting. He then moved to being a mailman at the Goldwyn Studio, then assistant director, and, finally, director. After helming some silent films, Bill directed “Wings” (1927), which cost 2 million dollars to make, and was very successful. This movie established him in Hollywood, but, due to his temper and antipathy for the studio, he was banned to attend the premiere of the film, as well as the first academy award ceremony, in which “Wings” won the best picture Oscar. Despite his disdain for the studio system, Wellman directed some of the best movies in Hollywood history, such as “The Public Enemy” (1931), “A Star is Born” (1937), “Nothing Sacred” (1939), “Beau Geste” (1939), “The Ox-Bow Incident” (1943), and many more. He also made five films with John Wayne, and, in a 35- year career, his films received 32 academy award nominations – 4 for Best Picture and 3 for Best Director.Read more ›
The visuals used in telling of his bio in film are wonderful to see. It is not a waste of time. The story of the making of "Lafayette Escadrille", with Tab Hunter, is ironic, in that he killed off all the 'love-making-stars' as the finale of the movie, only to have to bring everybody back together several months later, having to re-shoot the ending with everyone living happily-ever-after (according to Jack Warner's demand) that pissed off Welmann. Oh Hollywood endings!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A welcome addition to our film class study prior to viewing "A Star Is Born" and "Nothing Sacred."Published 2 months ago by Kella Klinker Simonin
This is a wonderful documentary on a prolific and extremely talented filmmaker. It's also a tasteful tribute from a loving son to his famous father. Read morePublished 14 months ago by Mike Kimmel Scenes for Teens
Wild Bill does not chronicle Hickok or even Lumbergh, rather it is the amazing, hard to believe life of one of Hollywood's underrated directors, featuring contributions from the 1%... Read morePublished on February 8, 2014 by Colten
If you like the movies, meet the winner of the first Oscar for best picture. But the studio did not invite Bill to the ceremonies! Why? Buy the documentary. Read morePublished on July 27, 2013 by Robert M. Yuna