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Roger Spottiswoode

Roger Spottiswoode

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Also Known As: Died:
Born: January 5, 1945 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: England, GB Profession: director, screenwriter, producer, editor

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

A distinguished writer of plays, novels, short stories, non-fiction, and screenplays, Ronald Harwood earned a reputation for intelligent literary adaptations that often drew from his own works. Though he had a long and fruitful career, Harwood came to prominence late in life by winning the Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay for Roman Polanski's extraordinary film, "The Pianist" (2002), which depicted Polish pianist Wladyslaw Szpilman's survival in Nazi occupied Warsaw. Previously he earned Academy attention with the adaptation of his own play, "The Dresser" (1983), which drew upon his own experiences as a personal assistant to aging actor Sir Donald Wolfit in the 1950s. Harwood later brought recognition to the struggle of apartheid with his biopic on "Mandela" (HBO, 1987) and later with his adaptation of "Cry, the Beloved Country" (1995). After "The Pianist," he delivered notable adaptations of W. Somerset Maugham's "Being Julia" (2003) and Charles Dickens' "Oliver Twist" (2005), before writing an extraordinary adaptation of debilitated editor Jean Dominique-Bauby's memoir, "The Diving Bell and the Butterfly" (2007). While most writers saw their best work earlier in life, Harwood improved...

A distinguished writer of plays, novels, short stories, non-fiction, and screenplays, Ronald Harwood earned a reputation for intelligent literary adaptations that often drew from his own works. Though he had a long and fruitful career, Harwood came to prominence late in life by winning the Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay for Roman Polanski's extraordinary film, "The Pianist" (2002), which depicted Polish pianist Wladyslaw Szpilman's survival in Nazi occupied Warsaw. Previously he earned Academy attention with the adaptation of his own play, "The Dresser" (1983), which drew upon his own experiences as a personal assistant to aging actor Sir Donald Wolfit in the 1950s. Harwood later brought recognition to the struggle of apartheid with his biopic on "Mandela" (HBO, 1987) and later with his adaptation of "Cry, the Beloved Country" (1995). After "The Pianist," he delivered notable adaptations of W. Somerset Maugham's "Being Julia" (2003) and Charles Dickens' "Oliver Twist" (2005), before writing an extraordinary adaptation of debilitated editor Jean Dominique-Bauby's memoir, "The Diving Bell and the Butterfly" (2007). While most writers saw their best work earlier in life, Harwood improved exponentially with age on his way to becoming one of the literary world's most celebrated and prolific scribes.

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Filmographyclose complete filmography

DIRECTOR:

4.
  Spinning Boris (2004) Director
5.
  Ice Bound (2003) Director
6.
7.
  Noriega: God's Favorite (2000) Director
8.
  6th Day, The (2000) Director
9.
  Tomorrow Never Dies (1997) Director
10.
  Murder Live (1997) Director

CAST: (feature film)

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Milestones close milestones

1966:
Worked as editing trainee on film "Georgy Girl" which led to career as editor of TV commercials and documentaries
1971:
First film as editor, "Straw Dogs"; would also edit Sam Peckinpah's "The Getaway" (1972) and "Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid" (1973)
1974:
First association with director Karel Reisz as editor of "The Gambler"
1975:
Edited Walter Hill's "Hard Times"
1977:
Left editing to serve as asociate producer and second unit director on Reisz's "Who'll Stop the Rain"; first association with actor Richard Masur
1980:
Directorial debut, "Terror Train"
1981:
First collaboration with screenwriter Ron Shelton on "The Pursuit of D B Cooper"
1982:
Screenwriting debut (with Hill and Larry Gross), "48 Hrs."
1983:
Reteamed with Shelton and "48 Hrs." star Nick Nolte for first-rate political thriller "Under Fire"; first time directing Masur
1984:
Third and last film (to date) with Shelton, "The Best of Times"
1985:
Executive producer, "Baby: The Secret of the Lost Legend"
1987:
HBO movie "The Last Innocent Man" reunited him with Ed Harris from "Under Fire"
1988:
Directed slick but highly improbable "Shoot to Kill"; Masur also in cast
1989:
Second HBO movie, "Third Degree Burn", reunited him with Treat Williams ("The Pursuit of D B Cooper") and Mazur
1993:
Helmed the critically-acclaimed, Emmy-winning HBO movie "And the Band Played On"; Mazur part of cast
1995:
Co-directed (with Koreyoshi Hurahara) the Showtime miniseries "Hiroshima"; Masur again a cast member
1997:
Directed NBC movie "Murder Live!", about a man who holds a talk show's host, crew and audience captive
1997:
Helmed "Tomorrow Never Dies" installment of the James Bond series
2000:
Helmed the Arnold Schwarzenneger vehicle "The 6th Day"
2002:
Directed the NBC TV-movie "The Matthew Shepard Story"
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Companions close complete companion listing

wife:
Holly Palance. Screenwriter, actor. Filed for divorce in 1998; born in 1950; daughter of actor Jack Palance; acted in husband's "The Best of Times" (1986).

Family close complete family listing

father:
Raymond Spottiwoode. Film theoretician. Died in 1970.

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