Arthur Hiller

Active - 1956 - 2012  |   Born - Nov 22, 1923   |   Died - Aug 17, 2016   |   Genres - Drama, Comedy, Crime

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Biography by AllMovie

After wartime service with the Royal Canadian Air Force, Edmontonian Arthur Hiller began his show business career in Canadian radio and television. In the mid-1950s, Hiller left the CBC for American television, directing such live anthologies as Playhouse 90 and such filmed weeklies as Alcoa/Goodyear Theatre, Alfred Hitchcock Presents and The Naked City. He directed his first theatrical film in 1957, moving on to such 1960s big-budgeters as The Americanization of Emily (1964), where he proved himself a superb technician with only a trace of personal style. In 1970, Hiller was fortunate enough to be in the director's chair for that year's biggest hit, Love Story, which earned him an Oscar nomination. Extremely successful for the next four decades, Arthur Hiller continued to turn out such slick, efficient products as Silver Streak (1974), The In-Laws (1976), The Lonely Guy (1984) and The Babe (1992), works that were always as good as (but seldom better than) their scripts. One of Hiller's most admirable professional accomplishments was establishing a strong rapport with notoriously argumentative actor George C. Scott, whom Hiller directed in The Hospital (1971) and Plaza Suite (1971), and about whom Hiller wrote an article for the 1977 compendium Closeups: The Movie Star Book. In 1993, Hiller was appointed president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, a post he held until 1997. One of his last films, An Alan Smithee Film: Burn Hollywood Burn (1997), was ironic in that Hiller requested his name be taken off the film after seeing the final cut; Alan Smithee was the official pseudonym of the Directors Guild in cases like that, and, therefore, the film credited to Alan Smithee. Hiller won the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award in 2002, and was made an Officer of the Order of Canada in 2006. He died in 2016, at age 92.

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