Phil Karlson


Director
Phil Karlson

About

Also Known As
Philip N Karlstein, Philip P. Karlstein, Philip Karlstein, Phil Karlstein, Phillip Karlstein, Phillip P. Karlstein
Birth Place
Chicago, Illinois, USA
Born
July 02, 1908
Died
December 12, 1985
Cause of Death
Cancer

Biography

Former gag-man (for Buster Keaton), propman, studio manager and assistant director who turned out his first feature-length film in 1944. Karlson hit his stride in the 1950s with a brace of gritty crime melodramas noted for their realistic detail and graphic violence. Foremost among these were "Scandal Sheet" (1952), "99 River Street" (1953) and three 1955 films: "Tight Spot"; "Five Again...

Biography

Former gag-man (for Buster Keaton), propman, studio manager and assistant director who turned out his first feature-length film in 1944. Karlson hit his stride in the 1950s with a brace of gritty crime melodramas noted for their realistic detail and graphic violence. Foremost among these were "Scandal Sheet" (1952), "99 River Street" (1953) and three 1955 films: "Tight Spot"; "Five Against the House"; and "The Phenix City Story" (in which the lead actor wore the actual clothes of the murder victim on whose story the film was based). Although he received a measure of critical attention and developed something of a cult following, Karlson remained a B director for the duration of his career. He scored a box-office success in 1973 with "Walking Tall."

Filmography

 

Director (Feature Film)

Framed (1975)
Director
Walking Tall (1973)
Director
Ben (1972)
Director
Hornets' Nest (1970)
Director
The Wrecking Crew (1969)
Director
A Time for Killing (1967)
Director
The Silencers (1966)
Director
Rampage (1963)
Director
Kid Galahad (1962)
Director
The Scarface Mob (1962)
Director
The Young Doctors (1961)
Director
The Secret Ways (1961)
Director
Key Witness (1960)
Director
Hell to Eternity (1960)
Director
Gunman's Walk (1958)
Director
The Brothers Rico (1957)
Director
The Phenix City Story (1955)
Director
Hell's Island (1955)
Director
Tight Spot (1955)
Director
5 Against the House (1955)
Director
They Rode West (1954)
Director
99 River Street (1953)
Director
Scandal Sheet (1952)
Director
The Brigand (1952)
Director
Kansas City Confidential (1952)
Director
The Texas Rangers (1951)
Director
Mask of the Avenger (1951)
Director
Lorna Doone (1951)
Director
The Iroquois Trail (1950)
Director
The Big Cat (1949)
Director
Ladies of the Chorus (1949)
Director
Down Memory Lane (1949)
Director
Thunderhoof (1948)
Director
Rocky (1948)
Director
Adventures in Silverado (1948)
Director
Louisiana (1947)
Director
Kilroy Was Here (1947)
Director
Black Gold (1947)
Director
Wife Wanted (1946)
Director
Live Wires (1946)
Director
Behind the Mask (1946)
Director
Dark Alibi (1946)
Director
Swing Parade of 1946 (1946)
Director
The Missing Lady (1946)
Director
Bowery Bombshell (1946)
Director
The Shadow Behind the Mask (1946)
Director
The Shanghai Cobra (1945)
Director
There Goes Kelly (1945)
Director
G. I. Honeymoon (1945)
Director
A WAVE, a WAC and a Marine (1944)
Director
It Started with Eve (1941)
Assistant Director
Where Did You Get That Girl? (1941)
Assistant Director
The Flame of New Orleans (1941)
Assistant Director
In the Navy (1941)
Assistant Director
Double Alibi (1940)
Assistant Director
The House of the Seven Gables (1940)
Assistant Director
Margie (1940)
Assistant Director
You're Not So Tough (1940)
Assistant Director
I Can't Give You Anything but Love, Baby (1940)
Assistant Director
Slightly Tempted (1940)
Assistant Director
Seven Sinners (1940)
Assistant Director
The Invisible Man Returns (1940)
Assistant Director
The Last Warning (1939)
Assistant Director
Mutiny on the Blackhawk (1939)
Assistant Director
The Family Next Door (1939)
Assistant Director
The House of Fear (1939)
Assistant Director
Rio (1939)
Assistant Director
Code of the Streets (1939)
Assistant Director
Two Bright Boys (1939)
Assistant Director
Society Smugglers (1939)
Assistant Director
Newsboys' Home (1938)
Assistant Director
The Lady in the Morgue (1938)
Assistant Director
The Last Express (1938)
Assistant Director
The Black Doll (1938)
Assistant Director
His Exciting Night (1938)
Assistant Director
Danger on the Air (1938)
Assistant Director
Top of the Town (1937)
Assistant Director
Night Key (1937)
Assistant Director
Love Before Breakfast (1936)
Assistant Director
Parole! (1936)
Assistant Director
Postal Inspector (1936)
Assistant Director
The Girl on the Front Page (1936)
Assistant Director
Princess O'Hara (1935)
Assistant Director
Manhattan Moon (1935)
Assistant Director
The Affair of Susan (1935)
Assistant Director
Alias Mary Dow (1935)
Assistant Director
Mystery of Edwin Drood (1935)
Assistant Director
His Night Out (1935)
Assistant Director
She Gets Her Man (1935)
Assistant Director
Werewolf of London (1935)
Assistant Director
Romance in the Rain (1934)
Assistant Director
I Like It That Way (1934)
Assistant Director
Great Expectations (1934)
Assistant Director
Embarrassing Moments (1934)
Assistant Director
The Countess of Monte Cristo (1934)
Assistant Director
Cheating Cheaters (1934)
Assistant Director
Strange Wives (1934)
Assistant Director
My Pal the King (1932)
Fill-in Director and Assistant Director

Writer (Feature Film)

Embarrassing Moments (1934)
Contract Writer

Producer (Feature Film)

Between Us Girls (1942)
Associate Producer

Life Events

Photo Collections

Tight Spot - Behind-the-Scenes Photos
Tight Spot - Behind-the-Scenes Photos

Videos

Movie Clip

Gunman's Walk (1958) - Yes, Big Brother Handsome opening by director Phil Karlson, photographed by Charles “Buddy” Lawton, introducing James Darren as voluble Davy, and avid horseman Tab Hunter as elder brother Ed, taciturn by comparison, and whistling, in the Columbia Technicolor Western, from a story by Ric Hardman and screenplay by Frank Nugent, Gunman’s Walk, 1958, starring Van Heflin.
Gunman's Walk (1958) - Put That Gun Away! Rebellious son Ed Hackett (accomplished rider Tab Hunter, in the saddle) has been challenged by his prominent rancher father Lee (Van Heflin) to see who can get to the saloon quicker, leading to stunts then a confrontation in the barroom, Paul Bryar the bartender, Ray Teal the observant stranger, in director Phil Karlson’s Gunman’s Walk, 1958.
Gunman's Walk (1958) - Habit Is A Strong Thing Van Heflin as titanic rancher father Lee Hackett is angry with son Davy (James Darren), for being unwilling to wear his gun, and shooting poorly when he does, offering instruction when they’re joined by more dangerous brother Ed (Tab Hunter), in a striking bit of Western macho family dynamics, in Gunman’s Walk, 1958, from a Rick Hardman story and Frank Nugent screenplay.
Live Wires (1946) - Overgrown Kid The first scene with Leo Gorcey reincarnated as "Slip Mahoney," in the first official "Bowery Boys" movie, who gets into trouble then joins his angered sister (Pamela Blake) and old Dead End and East Side Kids mates (Huntz Hall, Bobby Jordan, Billy Benedict), in Live Wires, 1946.
Live Wires (1946) - Ignorance Is Bliss Leo Gorcey (as "Slip") is in everybody's face, particularly Sach (Huntz Hall) and waitress Mabel (Patti Brill), in the Bowery Boys' first feature, Live Wires, 1946.
Live Wires (1946) - Pierce's Peerless In perhaps an archetypal scene for the newly re-named Bowery Boys, Slip (Leo Gorcey) with mates (Huntz Hall, Bobby Jordan, Billy Benedict) and sister (Pamela Blake), tries his new sales pitch on a wary customer (BIlly Christy), early in Live Wires, 1946.
99 River Street (1953) - -- Nothing But Television Ex-fighter New York cabbie Eddie (John Payne) with buddy Stan (Frank Faylen) discussing marriage, when actress pal Linda (Evelyn Keyes) arrives, early in Phil Karlson's 99 River Street, 1953.
99 River Street (1953) - I Could Have Been The Champion Ex-fighter Ernie Driscoll (John Payne) watching himself on TV, then with ex-showgirl wife Pauline (Peggie Castle), opening director Phil Karlson's 99 River Street, 1953.
99 River Street (1953) - -- Police Dogs Are Dangerous Thief Victor (Brad Dexter), boyfriend of married Pauline (Peggie Castle) showing off, thwarted by Mickey (Jack Lambert) and Christopher (Jay Adler) in their bogus pet store, in Phil Karlson's 99 River Street, 1953.
99 River Street (1953) - I Killed A Man Big plot event as struggling actress Linda (Evelyn Keyes) asks Chuck the counter man (Gene Reynolds) where she can find our hero, ex-fighter turned cabbie Ernie (John Payne), who’s keeping cool after running into his wife on the town with another guy, because she had a problem at her audition, in Phil Karlson’s 99 River Street, 1953.
Silencers, The (1966) - This Is Mrs. Helm Now in Phoenix, coaxed from retirement to investigate a scheme to sabotage a nuclear test, secret agent Matt Helm (Dean Martin, in his debut in the spy-comedy series) meets Stella Stevens as clumsy and under-clothed Gail, his colleague Tina (Daliah Lavi) soon arriving, Robert Webber on the poolside keyboard, in The Silencers, 1966.
Silencers, The (1966) - I Haven't Seen All Latest Models Fleeing an Acapulco night-club assassination, Matt Helm (Dean Martin) and Tina (Daliah Lavi) hustle back to the hotel to interrogate Gail (Stella Stevens) who turns out to be wearing a tear-away dress, in The Silencers, 1966.

Trailer

Family

Lillian O'Brien
Mother
Actor. Member of Dublin's Abbey Players.

Bibliography