Jaws (1975), E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial (1982), Jurassic Park (1993), Schindler’s List (1993), Saving Private Ryan (1998) and so on- yes, you have guessed it right. There has been a guy who was behind the camera to direct some of these most iconic films in Hollywood history. The person, we are talking about, is Steven Spielberg who has turned our dream into reality.
Steven Allan Spielberg is an American film director, screenwriter, studio entrepreneur, producer, filmmaker and is considered one of the founding pioneers of the New Hollywood era as well as one of the most influential directors of Hollywood of all time.
Spielberg was born on December 18th, 1946, in Cincinnati Ohio. While growing up and being raised in the Orthodox Jewish faith, he suffered from anti-Semitic bullying. This made his childhood kind of unpleasant. But this experience could not make him stay back. He made his first home video at the age of 12 and as a teenager, he continued to make amateur, 8 mm, “adventure” films. And for his short film, ‘The Last Gunfight’, he won his photography merit badge as a Boy Scout. After graduating from high school, he found his dream to become a film director.
So, he applied to the University of Southern California School of Theater, Film and Television, Los Angeles. But sadly, he got rejected there three times because of his “C” grade average. He then ended up going to California State University, Long Beach. After that, Spielberg was offered a small, unpaid editing department internship at Universal Studios while still a student.
Not long after, he got an opportunity to make a short film titled ‘Amblin’ which had won a number of awards and the vice president of the studio was so impressed by his work that he gave Steven a 7-year directing contract. This made him the youngest person at the time to sign a long-term directing contract with a major Hollywood studio. And then, there was no turning back.
Spielberg got a contract in 1969 to direct a Night Gallery episode – this was his first work on TV at the age of only 21. He then gradually directed those note-worthy movies that just made the film-history a U-turn and have grown into archetypes of modern Hollywood escapist filmmaking.
‘Jaws’, a cult classic film, was deemed as the first summer blockbuster and with this film Spielberg became a household name. He received his first Oscar nomination for the film for Best Director in 1977. And not to mention, another of his results of direction, ‘Jurassic Park’, became a highly successful franchise. For the films of ‘Schindler’s List’ and ‘Saving Private Ryan’, Steven Spielberg has won two Oscars for best Director. Besides, he has won the Academy Award for Best Director three times. He also co-founded these two companies- ‘Amblin Entertainment’ and ‘DreamWorks Pictures’. The then president of America, Barack Obama awarded Spielberg the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2015.
Thus, Steven Spielberg becomes one of the American film industry’s most critically successful filmmakers, with praise for his directing talent and versatility.
That’s not it. Spielberg later returned to Long Beach, California State University, and graduated in 2002 with a BA in Film and Electronics Arts.
And the most interesting fact about him is, he returns to the USC film school where his admission application had been turned down three-times. Now he sits on the Board of Directors of USC and donates a million dollars a year to the school. He is such an inspiration!
Last but not the least, he motivates us by saying, “I dream for a living.”