British director Clive Donner was 15 when he earned his first industry job as a film editor. At 32, Donner was promoted to director with the medium-budget The Secret Place. He thereafter evinced a great deal of technical skill. During the "auteur"-happy 1960s and 1970s, Donner was interviewed by impressionable young cineastes who regarded him as the sole "author" of such films as The Caretaker (1963, script by Harold Pinter) and Nothing But the Best (1964, script by Frederick Raphael). Picking up the cudgel, Donner told his interviewers what they wanted to hear, even taking full credit for the success of 1964's What's New Pussycat -- graciously citing the "important contribution" of Woody Allen's screenplay as a near-afterthought! Donner went on to direct projects including Old Dracula (1974) The Nude Bomb (1980) and Charlie Chan and the Curse of the Dragon Queen (1981). He succumbed to complications from Alzheimer's disease at the age of 84 in 2010.
by Hal Erickson biography