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Arthur Penn

Arthur Penn


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Also Known As: Died: September 29, 2010
Born: September 27, 1922 Cause of Death: congestive heart failure
Birth Place: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA Profession: Director ... director producer floor manager screenwriter actor


Arthur Penn proved himself a true triple threat during his career, achieving extraordinary success as a director of live television dramas, Broadway plays and feature films. Like Sidney Lumet and John Frankenheimer, he owed a huge debt to the crucible of television's Golden Age, but it was director Elia Kazan he resembled most in his sympathy for actors, the flights of fancy he allowed, and the incredible range of expression he elicited in films like "The Miracle Worker" (1962), "Bonnie and Clyde" (1967) and "Little Big Man" (1970). Penn understood the poetry of close-up camera work, acknowledging that words were to the theater what actions were for film. His use of lighting and sound were stylistically and intellectually sophisticated, but ultimately it was his themes which propelled his pictures. No other director during the volatile 1960s had his finger so securely on America's pulse, and audiences responded enthusiastically to his exploration of the relationship between outsiders and mainstream society, even though his sympathies always seemed to lie invariably with the outcasts.

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