Henry Koster


Director
Henry Koster

About

Also Known As
Hermann Kosterlitz
Birth Place
Berlin, DE
Born
May 01, 1905
Died
September 21, 1988
Cause of Death
Complications Following Liver Surgery

Biography

Flexible studio talent who began his career as a critic, becoming a scenarist in 1926 and a director in 1932. Leaving Germany the year Hitler took power, Koster made several films in Europe before going to Hollywood. His US debut with "Three Smart Girls" (1937), the first in a series of Deanna Durbin vehicles, was a resounding success and helped bolster the straitened Universal studios.K...

Photos & Videos

Three Smart Girls Grow Up - Behind-the-Scenes Photos
Flower Drum Song - Movie Poster

Family & Companions

Peggy Moran
Wife
Actor. Married 1942.

Biography

Flexible studio talent who began his career as a critic, becoming a scenarist in 1926 and a director in 1932. Leaving Germany the year Hitler took power, Koster made several films in Europe before going to Hollywood. His US debut with "Three Smart Girls" (1937), the first in a series of Deanna Durbin vehicles, was a resounding success and helped bolster the straitened Universal studios.

Koster is perhaps best known for the charming "Harvey" (1950), in which James Stewart played opposite an invisible six-foot rabbit; he also directed the rather stodgy but well-remembered "The Robe" (1953), notably primarily as the first film to be shot in CinemaScope.

Filmography

 

Director (Feature Film)

Dear Brigitte (1965)
Director
The Singing Nun (1965)
Director
Take Her, She's Mine (1963)
Director
Mr. Hobbs Takes a Vacation (1962)
Director
Flower Drum Song (1961)
Director
The Story of Ruth (1960)
Director
The Naked Maja (1959)
Director
Fräulein (1958)
Director
My Man Godfrey (1957)
Director
The Power and the Prize (1956)
Director
D-Day the Sixth of June (1956)
Director
Good Morning, Miss Dove (1955)
Director
The Virgin Queen (1955)
Director
A Man Called Peter (1955)
Director
Désirée (1954)
Director
My Cousin Rachel (1953)
Director
The Robe (1953)
Director
Stars and Stripes Forever (1952)
Director
O. Henry's Full House (1952)
Director of "The Cop and the Anthem"
No Highway in the Sky (1951)
Director
Mr. Belvedere Rings the Bell (1951)
Director
Elopement (1951)
Director
Harvey (1950)
Director
My Blue Heaven (1950)
Director
Wabash Avenue (1950)
Director
Come to the Stable (1949)
Director
The Inspector General (1949)
Director
The Bishop's Wife (1948)
Director
The Luck of the Irish (1948)
Director
The Unfinished Dance (1947)
Director
Two Sisters from Boston (1946)
Director
Music for Millions (1945)
Director
Between Us Girls (1942)
Director
It Started with Eve (1941)
Director
Spring Parade (1940)
Director
First Love (1939)
Director
Three Smart Girls Grow Up (1939)
Director
The Rage of Paris (1938)
Director
One Hundred Men and a Girl (1937)
Director
Three Smart Girls (1936)
Director
Maria Baschkirtzeff (1936)
Director
Peter (1934)
Director
Das Hassliche Madchen (1933)
Director
Das Abenteuer der Thea Roland (1932)
Director

Cast (Feature Film)

The Big Show (1957)

Writer (Feature Film)

L' Or dans la rue (1934)
Screenwriter
Seine Freundin Annette (1931)
German Adapted
Weib im Dschungel (1931)
Writer
Die Waise von Lowood (1926)
Screenwriter

Producer (Feature Film)

Dear Brigitte (1965)
Producer
Take Her, She's Mine (1963)
Producer
Between Us Girls (1942)
Producer
The Rage of Paris (1938)
Producer

Production Companies (Feature Film)

The Unfinished Dance (1947)
Company
Two Sisters from Boston (1946)
Company
Music for Millions (1945)
Company
Between Us Girls (1942)
Company
It Started with Eve (1941)
Company
Spring Parade (1940)
Company
Three Smart Girls Grow Up (1939)
Company
First Love (1939)
Company

Life Events

1924

Screenwriting debut

1932

Directing debut with "Das Abenteuer der Thea Roland"

1933

Moved to France

1937

US directing debut "Three Smart Girls"

1953

Directed first cinemascope movie "The Robe"

Photo Collections

Three Smart Girls Grow Up - Behind-the-Scenes Photos
Here are a few photos taken behind-the-scenes during production of Universal Pictures' Mad About Music (1939), starring Deanna Durbin, Nan Grey, and Helen Parrish.
Flower Drum Song - Movie Poster
Here is the American one-sheet movie poster for Flower Drum Song (1961), starring Nancy Kwan. One-sheets measured 27x41 inches, and were the poster style most commonly used in theaters.

Videos

Movie Clip

Robe, The (1953) - We'll Both Need Friends Sent on a hurried mission to Palestine, having offended the emperor's heir, Roman officer Gallio (Richard Burton) with new slave Demetrius (Victor Mature) and Diana (Jean Simmons), the childhood sweetheart with whom he's just re-united, in the landmark wide-screen hit The Robe, 1953.
Come To The Stable (1949) - Sisters From France Jumped by director Henry Koster from the idyllic village where they first arrived, the sisters (Loretta Young and Celeste Holm as Margaret and Scolastica), seeking land for their school, appear in the offices of a New England bishop (Basil Ruysdael), received by his aide (Regis Toomey), in Come To The Stable, 1949.
Flower Drum Song (1961) - Chop Suey Another Rodgers & Hammerstein original which has long split opinion (Is it cultural stereotyping or knowing commentary?), Juanita Hall reprising her stage role as Madame Liang of San Francisco, receiving a citizenship award then supported by Jim Shigeta (who, it is sometimes forgotten, started out as a singer), Jack Soo, Benson Fong et al, in Flower Drum Song, 1961.
Flower Drum Song (1961) - Such Fun Going Steady James Shigeta (as Wang Ta) and Nancy Kwan (as showgirl Linda) discuss their immediate future in a San Francisco Chinatown cafe in director Henry Koster's Flower Drum Song, 1961, from the Rodgers & Hammerstein musical.
Flower Drum Song (1961) - I Am Going to Like it Here James Shigeta (as student Wang Ta, scion of a prosperous San Francisco Chinese family) greets Miyoshi Umeki (as picture-bride Mei Li), just arrived from China, leading into her Asian-inflected song by Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II, in Flower Drum Song, 1961.
Flower Drum Song (1961) - I Enjoy Being a Girl Nancy Kwan (as Chinese-American showgirl Linda) strikes dozens of Western poses in a dazzling display by designer Irene, in the saucy Rodgers & Hammerstein number (dubbed by top vocalist Betty Jane "BJ" Baker, the former Mrs. Mickey Rooney), in Flower Drum Song, 1961.
Merry Andrew (1958) - Salud The Gallini circus family led by their patriarch (Salvatore Baccaloni) celebrates the upcoming marriage of Andrew (Danny Kaye) and their Selena (Pier Angeli), director Michael Kidd with choreography to a tune by Saul Chaplin and Johnny Mercer, in Merry Andrew, 1958.
My Cousin Rachel (1952) - Opening, They Used To Hang Our Murderers John Sutton as Ambrose speaks, then Richard Burton narrates, recalling his own childhood, Henry Koster directing, in Burton’s Hollywood debut, with elaborate plotting from the Daphne Du Maruier novel, opening My Cousin Rachel, 1952, co-starring Olivia de Havilland.
My Cousin Rachel (1952) - She Died On Her Wedding Night First meeting of Richard Burton as Philip Ashley and his cousin-by-marriage, Olivia de Havilland, the title character, the widow he suspects murdered her husband, the cousin who raised him, then left him his entire estate at Cornwall, in My Cousin Rachel, 1952, from the Daphne Du Maurier novel.
My Cousin Rachel (1952) - She Has Done For Me More of Richard Burton’s narration, as Philip Ashley, raised on the Cornwall coast, by his cousin Ambrose, who’s married a strange woman in Italy, with trusted neighbors the Kendalls (Ronald Squire, Audrey Dalton), receiving shocking news, in My Cousin Rachel, 1952.
Harvey (1950) - Dowd's My Name Opening director Henry Koster’s treatment of the Pulitzer Prize-winning play by Mary Chase, James Stewart as Elwood P. Dowd, Josephine Hull his sister Veda, whom she also played on Broadway, Victoria Horne as the daughter Myrtle Mae, in Harvey, 1950.
Harvey (1950) - He'd Be Delighted In their second scene together, James Stewart as Elwood P. Dowd, with his not-yet-explained invisible giant rabbit friend, visits the bar, tended by Cracker (Richard Wessel), meeting friend Meegles (Harry Hines), learning of the party his sister didn’t mention, in Harvey, 1950.

Trailer

No Highway in the Sky - (Original Trailer) An engineer (James Stewart) fights to prove that a new airplane is not safe in No Highway in the Sky (1951) co-starring Marlene Dietrich.
Man Called Peter, A - (Textless Trailer) A Scottish boy follows his faith to a bright career preaching in Washington, DC in A Man Called Peter (1955).
Bishop's Wife, The - (Original Trailer) Cary Grant, Loretta Young and David Niven, stars of the romantic fantasy The Bishop's Wife (1947), introduce the...we'll let them explain.
Desiree - (Original Trailer) A young woman (Jean Simmons) wins the heart of Napoleon (Marlon Brando), though the two can never be together in Desiree (1954).
O. Henry's Full House - (Original Trailer) Five stories reveal O. Henry's gift for the surprise ending with the help of five directors and a host of stars in O. Henry's Full House (1952).
Flower Drum Song - (Original Trailer) A refugee travels to Chinatown as a mail-order bride in Rodgers and Hammerstein's musical comedy Flower Drum Song (1961).
Robe, The - (Original Trailer) A Roman military tribune wins The Robe (1953) of Jesus Christ in the first CinemaScope feature.
Inspector General, The - (Original Trailer) Danny Kaye is mistaken for a government official in a small Eastern European village in The Inspector General (1949).
Take Her, She's Mine - (Original Trailer) James Stewart attempts to protect his college-age daughter from trouble which leads to scandal in Take Her, She's Mine (1963).
Mr. Hobbs Takes a Vacation - (Original Trailer) James Stewart takes his family to the beach and lives to regret it in Mr. Hobbs Takes a Vacation (1962).
Two Sisters from Boston - (Original Trailer) Two Sisters from Boston (1946) have their sensibilities bent when they find work in a Bowery saloon in this hit MGM musical.
Music for Millions - (Original Trailer) A pregnant musician awaits her husband's return from World War II in Music for Millions (1944) starring June Allyson, Margaret O'Brien and Jimmy Durante.

Family

Robert J Koster
Son
Assistant director.
Peter Koster
Son

Companions

Peggy Moran
Wife
Actor. Married 1942.

Bibliography