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Norman Mailer

Norman Mailer

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Also Known As: Norman Kingsley Mailer Died: November 10, 2007
Born: January 31, 1923 Cause of Death: acute renal failure
Birth Place: Long Branch, New Jersey, USA Profession: novelist, director, screenwriter, poet, journalist, actor

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Pulitzer Prize-winning author Norman Mailer was often called a literary lion, even long before his death in November 2007. Well known not only for his anti-war novel The Naked and the Dead (1948), he also found time to squeeze in work as a journalist, provocateur, womanizer, political candidate, film director, and actor. He wrote over 30 books and won the Pulitzer twice for The Armies of the Night (1968) and The Executioner's Song (1979). While his work was hailed and reviled at the same time, the World War II veteran stood his ground and was fearless when it came to his views on U.S. politics, especially during the tumultuous years of the Vietnam and Gulf Wars. He made headlines frequently, most notoriously in 1960 when he stabbed Adele Morales, his second of six wives, with a penknife. Yet Mailer was as much a hero to some as he was a villain in the eyes of others. As a founding father of New Journalism, Mailer was critical in a movement that started in the 1960s; one that eventually gave birth to the weekly alternative newspaper The Village Voice - the modern hipster's Bible. The author and former soldier also contributed much to the film industry, adapting his work such as "The Executioner's...

Pulitzer Prize-winning author Norman Mailer was often called a literary lion, even long before his death in November 2007. Well known not only for his anti-war novel The Naked and the Dead (1948), he also found time to squeeze in work as a journalist, provocateur, womanizer, political candidate, film director, and actor. He wrote over 30 books and won the Pulitzer twice for The Armies of the Night (1968) and The Executioner's Song (1979). While his work was hailed and reviled at the same time, the World War II veteran stood his ground and was fearless when it came to his views on U.S. politics, especially during the tumultuous years of the Vietnam and Gulf Wars. He made headlines frequently, most notoriously in 1960 when he stabbed Adele Morales, his second of six wives, with a penknife. Yet Mailer was as much a hero to some as he was a villain in the eyes of others. As a founding father of New Journalism, Mailer was critical in a movement that started in the 1960s; one that eventually gave birth to the weekly alternative newspaper The Village Voice - the modern hipster's Bible. The author and former soldier also contributed much to the film industry, adapting his work such as "The Executioner's Song" into movies, and directing Ryan O'Neal and Isabella Rossellini in "Tough Guys Don't Dance" (1987). Mailer packed a lot into his 84 years, making both his life and work an integral part of the American cultural fabric.

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Filmographyclose complete filmography

DIRECTOR:

1.
  Tough Guys Don't Dance (1987) Director
2.
  Maidstone (1971) Director
3.
  Beyond the Law - Blue (1968) Director
4.
  Wild 90 (1968) Director

CAST: (feature film)

2.
 Inside Deep Throat (2005) Himself
3.
 Hijacking Catastrophe (2004) Himself
4.
 New York in the Fifties (2000) Himself (Archival Footage)
6.
 Cremaster 2 (1999) Harry Houdini
7.
 Source, The (1999) Himself
9.
 When We Were Kings (1996) Himself
10.
 Obit Writer, The (1993) Martin Rattle
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

1941:
Won college contest; first fiction, "The Greatest Thing in the World", published in <i>Story Magazine</i>
:
Had fiction published in <i>The Harvard Advocate</i>
1944:
Served in US Army
1947:
Published first novel, <i>The Naked and the Dead</i>
1948:
Worked as a journalist at <i>The New York Post</i>
1949:
Under contract to Samuel Goldwyn
:
Edited <i>Dissent</i>
1955:
Was one of the co-founders of the alternative weekly newspaper <i>Village Voice</i>
:
Arrested for stabbing second wife Adele Morales twice with a penknife at their Manhattan apartment on November 20, 1960 after a party, unofficially kicking off his New York mayoral campaign; spent 17 days at Bellevue Hospital under psychiatric observation; grand jury indicted him for felonius assault; six months later, Mailer pled guilty to lesser charge of third-degree assault and recieved suspended sentence
1967:
Jailed for protesting American involvement in Vietnam
1968:
Directed, produced, scripted, edited and acted in "Beyond the Law"
1969:
Ran for the office of mayor of New York
1969:
Made second film "Wild 90"; also editor, screenwriter, actor and producer
1970:
Directed "Maidstone" in which three of his former wives appeared; also edited, wrote and produced
1973:
Sparred with Jose Torres on "The Dick Cavett Show"
1981:
Portrayed architect Stanford White in Milos Forman's "Ragtime"
1987:
Wrote and directed "Tough Guys Don't Dance"
1987:
Appeared in Jean-Luc Godard's "King Lear"
1993:
Acted in "The Obit Writer", directed by Brian Cox
1999:
Had featured role as Harry Houdini in "Cremaster 2"
2000:
Penned the teleplay for "An American Tragedy" (CBS), a miniseries about the O J Simpson murder trial
2004:
Made his TV acting debut by playing himself on an episode of the WB's "Gilmore Girls"
2008:
Penned his final the novel, <i>The Castle in the Forest</i>, which tells the story of Adolf Hitler as a kid; book released after his death
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Education

P S 161: New York , New York -
Brooklyn Boys High School: Brooklyn , New York - 1939
Harvard University: Cambridge , Massachusetts - 1944
University of Paris: - 1947

Notes

"The few times I've acted, I've been amazed at how real you can feel when you're acting. Sometimes more real than you can feel in your own life." --Norman Mailer in NEW YORK TIMES MAGAZINE, September 22, 1991

Companions close complete companion listing

wife:
Beatrice Silverman. Married in 1944; divorced in 1952.
wife:
Adele Morales. Married in 1954; divorced in February 1961; second wife; Mailer was arrested for stabbing her twice with a penknife at their Manhattan apartment on November 20, 1960 after a party; appeared in "Maidstone" (1968).
wife:
Lady Jeanne Campbell. Grand-daughter of Lord Beaverbrook; married in 1962; divorced; mother of Mailer's daughter Kate; has second daughter, playwright-actress Cusi Cram.
wife:
Beverly Bentley. Actor. Married in 1963; divorced; appeared in, among others, first three films Mailer directed including "Maidstone" (1968).
wife:
Carol Stevens. Singer.
wife:
Norris Church. Former art teacher. Appeared in "Ragtime" opposite Mailer; sixth wife; taught art near Little Rock, AR c. 1973.
VIEW COMPLETE COMPANION LISTING

Family close complete family listing

father:
Isaac Barnett Mailer. Accountant. Immigrated to USA from South Africa by way of England.
mother:
Fanny Mailer. Employment agency owner.
sister:
Barbara Alson. Secretary.
daughter:
Susan Mailer. Mother, Beatrice Silverman.
daughter:
Danielle Moschen. Mother Adele Morales.
daughter:
Elizabeth Mailer. Mother, Adele Morales.
daughter:
Kate Mailer. Actor. Born on August 18, 1962; appeared in "King Lear" (1987) as Norman Mailer's daughter, Kate; mother, Jeanne Campbell.
son:
Michael Mailer. Producer. Head of Chronicle Films; mother, Beverly Bentley.
son:
Stephen Mailer. Actor. Born March 10, 1966; mother, Beverly Bentley; married to actress Lindsay Marx.
son:
Matt Mailer. Director.
son:
John Buffalo Mailer. Playwright. Born c. 1978.
VIEW COMPLETE FAMILY LISTING

Bibliography close complete biography

"The Naked and the Dead" Rinehart
"Barbary Shore" Rinehart
"The Deer Park" G.P. Putnam's Sons
"Advertisements for Myself" G.P. Putnam's Sons
"Death for the Ladies, and Other Disasters" G.P. Putnam's Sons
"An American Dream" Dial
"Cannibals and Christians" Dial
"Why Are We in Vietnam?" G.P. Putnam's Sons
"Miami and the Siege of Chicago" World and New American Library
"Armies of the Night" World and New American Library
"Running Against the Machine" Doubleday
"Of a Fire on the Moon"
"The Prisoner of Sex"
"The Executioner's Song"
"Black Messiah"
"Of Women and Their Elegance"
"Marilyn, A Biography"
"St George and the Godfather: Collected Essays" William Morrow
"Ancient Evenings"
"Tough Guys Don't Dance"
"Harlot's Ghost"
"Portrait of Picasso as a Young Man: An Interpretive Biography" Atlantic Monthly Press
"Oswald's Tale: An American Mystery" Random House
"The Gospel According to the Son" Random House
"The Last Party" Barricade Books
"The Time of Our Life" Random House
"Mailer" Houghton Mifflin
VIEW COMPLETE BIBLIOGRAPHY

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