Sidney Lumet  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Sidney Lumet (June 25, 1924 - April 9, 2011) was an American film director, producer and screenwriter with over 50 films to his name, including 12 Angry Men (1957), Dog Day Afternoon (1975), Network (1976) and The Verdict (1982), all of which earned him Academy Award nominations for Best Director.

The Encyclopedia of Hollywood states that Lumet was one of the most prolific directors of the modern era, making more than one movie per year on average since his directorial debut in 1957. He is noted by Turner Classic Movies for his "strong direction of actors", "vigorous storytelling" and the "social realism" in his best work, and critic Roger Ebert describes him as having been "one of the finest craftsmen and warmest humanitarians among all film directors." Lumet became known as an "actor's director," having worked with the best of them during his career, probably more than "any other director."

Lumet began his career as an Off Broadway director, then became a highly efficient TV director. His first movie was typical of his best work: a well-acted, tightly written, deeply considered "problem picture," 12 Angry Men (1957). Since then, Lumet has divided his energies among other idealistic problem pictures along with literate adaptations of plays and novels, big stylish pictures, and New York-based black comedies. As a result of directing 12 Angry Men, he was also responsible for leading the first wave of directors who made a successful transition from TV to movies. For being one of the most reliable and dependable directors of the last half-century, in 2005 he received an Academy Award for Lifetime Achievement for his "brilliant services to screenwriters, performers, and the art of the motion picture." Two years later, Lumet concluded his career with the acclaimed drama Before the Devil Knows You're Dead (2007).


Year Film title Leading cast
1957 12 Angry Men Henry Fonda, Lee J. Cobb
1958 Stage Struck Henry Fonda, Susan Strasberg
1959 That Kind of Woman Sophia Loren, Tab Hunter
1959 The Fugitive Kind Marlon Brando, Joanne Woodward, Anna Magnani
1961 A View from the Bridge Raf Vallone, Jean Sorel
1962 Long Day's Journey Into Night Katharine Hepburn, Ralph Richardson, Jason Robards
1964 The Pawnbroker Rod Steiger, Geraldine Fitzgerald
1964 Fail-Safe Henry Fonda, Dan O'Herlihy, Walter Matthau
1965 The Hill Sean Connery, Harry Andrews
1966 The Group Candice Bergen, Joan Hackett
1967 The Deadly Affair James Mason, Harry Andrews
1968 Bye Bye Braverman George Segal, Jack Warden
1968 The Sea Gull Vanessa Redgrave, Simone Signoret
1969 The Appointment Omar Sharif, Anouk Aimée
1970 King: A Filmed Record...
Montgomery to Memphis
Paul Newman (narration), Joanne Woodward (narration)
1970 Last of the Mobile Hot Shots Lynn Redgrave, James Coburn
1971 The Anderson Tapes Sean Connery, Dyan Cannon, Martin Balsam
1972 Child's Play James Mason, Robert Preston
1972 The Offence Sean Connery, Ian Bannen, Trevor Howard
1973 Serpico Al Pacino
1974 Lovin' Molly Anthony Perkins, Beau Bridges
1974 Murder on the Orient Express Albert Finney, Lauren Bacall, Sean Connery, Ingrid Bergman
1975 Dog Day Afternoon Al Pacino, John Cazale
1976 Network Peter Finch, Faye Dunaway, William Holden, Robert Duvall, Ned Beatty
1977 Equus Richard Burton
1978 The Wiz Diana Ross, Michael Jackson
1980 Just Tell Me What You WantAlan King, Ali MacGraw
1981 Prince of the City Treat Williams, Jerry Orbach
1982 DeathtrapMichael Caine, Christopher Reeve, Dyan Cannon
1982 The VerdictPaul Newman, Jack Warden
1983 Daniel Timothy Hutton, Mandy Patinkin
1984 Garbo Talks Anne Bancroft, Ron Silver
1986 Power Richard Gere, Julie Christie, Gene Hackman
1986 The Morning AfterJane Fonda, Jeff Bridges
1988 Running on Empty River Phoenix, Judd Hirsch
1989 Family Business Sean Connery, Dustin Hoffman
1990 Q & A Timothy Hutton, Nick Nolte, Armand Assante
1992 A Stranger Among UsMelanie Griffith, John Pankow
1993 Guilty as Sin Don Johnson, Rebecca De Mornay
1997 Night Falls on Manhattan Andy García, Ian Holm, Lena Olin, Richard Dreyfuss
1997 Critical CareJames Spader, Kyra Sedgwick
1999 Gloria Sharon Stone, George C. Scott
2004 Strip Search Glenn Close, Maggie Gyllenhaal
2006 Find Me Guilty Vin Diesel, Alex Rocco
2007 Before the Devil Knows You're Dead Philip Seymour Hoffman, Ethan Hawke, Albert Finney

Academy Awards

Year Film Nominations Awards
1957 12 Angry Men 3
1962 Long Day's Journey into Night 1
1965 The Pawnbroker 1
1970 King: A Filmed Record... Montgomery to Memphis 1
1973 Serpico 2
1974 Murder on the Orient Express 6 1
1975 Dog Day Afternoon 6 1
1976 Network 10 4
1977 Equus 3
1978 The Wiz 4
1981 Prince of the City 1
1982 The Verdict 5
1986 The Morning After 1
1988 Running on Empty 2

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Sidney Lumet" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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