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Lawrence Kasdan

Lawrence Kasdan

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Body Heat: Deluxe Edition... William Hurt and Kathleen Turner strike sparks in Lawrence Kasdan's Body Heat, a... more info $5.98was $5.98 Buy Now

French Kiss DVD Meg Ryan ("Sleepless in Seattle") and Kevin Kline ("Dave") star in this bouncy... more info $9.98was $9.98 Buy Now

I Love You To Death DVD As the saying goes, "it's hard to keep a good man down." Apparently, it's also... more info $9.98was $9.98 Buy Now

Wyatt Earp DVD The legendary gunfight at the OK CorralĀ is stirringly presentedĀ in this epic... more info $5.98was $5.98 Buy Now

Silverado DVD This rousing Western is a modern day classic about a group of gunslingers who... more info $14.99was $14.99 Buy Now

Dreamcatcher DVD Directed by Lawrence Kasdan and based on the novel by Stephen King,... more info $5.98was $5.98 Buy Now

Also Known As: Lawrence Edward Kasdan Died:
Born: January 14, 1949 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: Miami Beach, Florida, USA Profession: director, screenwriter, producer, actor, advertising copywriter

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Responsible for writing some of the biggest blockbusters in Hollywood history, screenwriter Lawrence Kasdan was also an accomplished director who specialized in helming poignant ensemble character dramas. Kasdan first broke into Hollywood with the script for "The Bodyguard" (1992), which he sold in 1976, only to watch it languish in so-called development hell for almost two decades. Meanwhile, his script for "Continental Divide" (1981) captured the attention of Steven Spielberg and George Lucas, the latter of whom hired Kasdan to write "Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back" (1980), widely considered to be the best film in the franchise. He collaborated with Spielberg and Lucas again on "Raiders of the Lost Ark" (1981), a splashy action adventure that harkened back to the 1930s Saturday matinee serials. He next made his directorial debut with the steaming erotic noir, "Body Heat" (1981), after which he wrote the weaker, but nonetheless substantial "Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi" (1983). Kasdan earned considerable acclaim for writing and directing "The Big Chill" (1983) before delivering a well-received update of the Western with "Silverado" (1985). After returning to form with "The...

Responsible for writing some of the biggest blockbusters in Hollywood history, screenwriter Lawrence Kasdan was also an accomplished director who specialized in helming poignant ensemble character dramas. Kasdan first broke into Hollywood with the script for "The Bodyguard" (1992), which he sold in 1976, only to watch it languish in so-called development hell for almost two decades. Meanwhile, his script for "Continental Divide" (1981) captured the attention of Steven Spielberg and George Lucas, the latter of whom hired Kasdan to write "Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back" (1980), widely considered to be the best film in the franchise. He collaborated with Spielberg and Lucas again on "Raiders of the Lost Ark" (1981), a splashy action adventure that harkened back to the 1930s Saturday matinee serials. He next made his directorial debut with the steaming erotic noir, "Body Heat" (1981), after which he wrote the weaker, but nonetheless substantial "Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi" (1983). Kasdan earned considerable acclaim for writing and directing "The Big Chill" (1983) before delivering a well-received update of the Western with "Silverado" (1985). After returning to form with "The Accidental Tourist" (1988) and "Grand Canyon" (1991), Kasdan fell prey to indulgence with the overly long "Wyatt Earp" (1994) and the widely panned "Dreamcatcher" (2003). Though he remained relatively inactive since those high-profile missteps, Kasdan's reputation as an exquisite craftsman built hope that he would one day again return to his previous form.

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Filmographyclose complete filmography

DIRECTOR:

1.
  Dreamcatcher (2003) Director
2.
  Mumford (1999) Director
3.
  French Kiss (1995) Director
4.
  Wyatt Earp (1994) Director
5.
  Grand Canyon (1991) Director
6.
  I Love You To Death (1990) Director
7.
  Accidental Tourist, The (1988) Director
8.
  Silverado (1985) Director
9.
  The Big Chill (1983) Director
10.
  Body Heat (1981) Director

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 As Good As it Gets (1997) Dr Green
2.
 Into The Night (1985) 2nd Detective
3.
 Ted Danson: One Lucky Guy (2000) Interviewee
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

:
Raised in West Virginia
1972:
Worked as advertising copywriter for W B Doner and Company in Detroit, MI
:
Joined Doyle, Dane, Bernbach Advertisers in Los Angeles, CA; wrote and submitted screenplays at the same time
:
Worked as a freelance screenwriter
1976:
Sold first screenplay, "The Bodyguard"; remained unproduced until 1992 when it starred Kevin Costner and Whitney Houston; reportedly written as a Steve McQueen vehicle originally (date approximate)
1980:
His screenplay for "Continental Divide" caught the attention of Steven Spielberg who introduced Kasdan to George Lucas; hired by Lucas to work on first screenplay filmed, "The Empire Strikes Back" (which Kasdan took over when screenwriter Leigh Brackett died)
1981:
Penned "Raiders of the Lost Ark", the first installment of the Indiana Jones series, for producer Lucas and director Speilberg
1981:
Directorial debut, "Body Heat"
1983:
With Lucas, co-wrote the third installment of the "Star Wars" series, "The Return of the Jedi"
1983:
Executive produced first film "The Big Chill" (also director and co-screenwriter); earned first Academy Award nomination for Best Original Screenplay
1985:
Produced first film, "Silverado" (also director and co-writer)
1985:
Played Second Detective in John Landis' "Into the Night"
1987:
Produced first film that he did not direct or write, "Cross My Heart", directed by Armyan Bernstein
1988:
Co-wrote, co-produced and directed "The Accidental Tourist", starring William Hurt, Geena Davis and Kathleen Turner; earned Oscar nominations for Best Picture and Best Adapted Screenplay
1989:
Served as executive producer on first film he did not direct or script, "Immediate Family", directed by Jonathan Kaplan
1990:
Directed first film that he did not co-write, "I Love You to Death"
1991:
Produced, directed and co-wrote (with wife Meg) "Grand Canyon"; received fourth Oscar nomination for Best Original Screenplay
1992:
His script for "The Bodyguard" finally produced as vehicle for Costner and Whitney Houston
1994:
Produced, directed and co-scripted (with Dan Gordon) "Wyatt Earp", starring Costner in the title role
1995:
Stage directing debut, John Patrick Shanley's "Four Dogs and a Bone"
1995:
Helmed (only) "French Kiss", starring Meg Ryan (one of the producers), Kevin Kline and Timothy Hutton
1997:
Portrayed Dr Green in James L Brooks' "As Good As It Gets"
1998:
Produced "Home Fries", starring Drew Barrymore, Jake Busey and Shelley Duvall
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Education

University of California at Los Angeles: Los Angeles , California -
University of Michigan: Ann Arbor , Michigan - 1970
University of Michigan: Ann Arbor , Michigan - 1972

Notes

"Technically, movies have progressed to the point where 50 directors can shoot beautiful movies now, but what there has always been a shortage of--and it's more drastic than ever now--is writing. For the first 40 years of movies writers came out of theater or fiction or journalism. They brought with them classic ideas about character and narrative and dramatic construction. That was for the first 40 years. But for the last 20 years people have come out of television and MTV and out of a disintegrated popular culture, fragmented, and they don't bring with them any literary tradition. . . good writing is about the ambiguity, the complexity of life; there are no easy villains and no easy heroes. Good writing should be disturbing, should raise questions. That's what we tried to do in 'Grand Canyon.'" --Lawrence Kasdan (NEW YORK TIMES, January 16, 1992)

Received the Clio Award for his advertising work.

Companions close complete companion listing

wife:
Meg Kasdan. Screenwriter. Married on November 28, 1971; born c. 1948; met while they were both students at the University of Michigan; co-wrote "Grand Canyon" (1991).

Family close complete family listing

father:
Clarence Norman Kasdan. Retail manager. Ran electronics stores in several cities.
mother:
Sylvia Sarah Kasdan. Employment counselor.
brother:
Mark Kasdan. Screenwriter. Co-wrote "Silverado" (1985) with Kasdan; also wrote "Criminal Law" (1988).
son:
Jacob Kasdan. Director, screenwriter, producer. Born c. 1974; appeared in several of his father's films; first feature "Zero Effect" (1998).
son:
Jonathan Kasdan. Screenwriter. Born c. 1980; appeared in several of father's films; staff writer on NBC series "Freaks and Geeks".
VIEW COMPLETE FAMILY LISTING

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