Steven Spielberg well-known director, film writer, and producer in Hollywood. One of the major figures in the industry and the pioneer of blockbusters, the American director is the most commercially successful director of all time.
He is accoladed with several awards for his contribution to the cinema. Several of his works have been n inducted into the National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as “culturally, historically or aesthetically significant”.
Steven’s Rise To Excellence
Steven was born on December 18, 1946, in Cincinnati, Ohio. His family moved to Phoenix, Arizona in early 1957 and he grew up there. He and his family are Jews.
Growing up, Spielberg resented being a Jew. He grew further apart from Judaism during adolescence, after his family had moved to various neighborhoods and found themselves to be the only Jews.
From early on, he had a keen interest in films. He made his first home movie at age 12: a train wreck involving his toy Lionel trains. After joining Boy Scouts in 1958, he fulfilled a photography requirement for a badge, by making a nine-minute, 8 mm film titled The Last Gunfight.
Steven used his father’s movie camera to keep creating amateurs. He even started carrying it on every Scout trip. At age 13, Spielberg made a 40-minute war film, titled Escape to Nowhere, with a cast of school classmates. The film won first prize in a statewide competition.
Throughout his early teens, and after entering high school, Spielberg made about fifteen to twenty 8 mm “adventure” films. He kept creating films and his sci-fi 140-minute-long film was even screened at the local theatre for one evening.
He moved to Saratoga with his parents and completed his last high school year there, graduating in 1965. A year later, his parents divorced and Steven chose to move with his father to LA while his three sisters stayed back with their mother in Saratoga.
He then applied and enrolled at California State University, Long Beach, where he became a brother of the Theta Chi Fraternity.
After taking a tour bus to Universal Studios, a chance conversation with an executive led to Spielberg getting a three-day pass to the premises, allowing him to come back the next day. On the fourth day, he walked up to the studio gates without a pass, and the security guard waved him in: “I basically spent the next two months at Universal Studios. And that was how I became an unofficial apprentice that summer.”
In 1968, Universal presented Spielberg with an opportunity to write and direct a short film for theatrical release. He created the 26-minute long film, 35mm Amblin. The award-winning film impressed the vice president of the studios and he was offered a seven-year directorial contract.
A year later, he dropped out of college to begin directing television productions for Universal. It made him the youngest director to be signed to a long-term plan with a major Hollywood studio.
Steven’s first professional project was directing the pilot episode of Night Gallery in 1969, starring the famous actress Joan Crawford. However, his attempts at impressing every one of his impeccable skills at young age failed when he was asked to complete the project quickly and not attempt fancy camerawork.
But, Joan, who was initially “speechless, and then horrified ” at such a young and inexperienced person directing, later spoke in his appreciation:
“When I began to work with Steven, I understood everything. It was immediately obvious to me, and probably everyone else, that here was a young genius. I thought maybe more experience was important, but then I thought of all of those experienced directors who didn’t have Steven’s intuitive inspiration and who just kept repeating the same old routine performances. That was called “experience.” I knew then that Steven Spielberg had a brilliant future ahead of him. Hollywood doesn’t always recognize talent, but Steven’s was not going to be overlooked. I told him so in a note I wrote him. I wrote to Rod Serling, too. I was so grateful that he had approved Steven as the director. I told him he had been totally right.”
He kept working on several films, wrote for them, and Tv shows as well. His breakthrough came with Jaws (1975). Despite the film taking 100 more days than scheduled to be shot, it turned out to be a massive success.
The film grossed over $470 million. It created history and soon enough Spielberg became a household name.
He kept directing and producing and became one of the most influential directors and also the most commercially successful director in the world.
To give a brief overview of all his works, Spielberg directed the science fiction thriller Jurassic Park (1993), the highest-grossing film ever at the time, and the Holocaust drama Schindler’s List (1993), which has often been listed as one of the greatest films ever made.
He won the Academy Award for Best Director for the latter and the 1998 World War II epic Saving Private Ryan starring Tom Sizemore. Spielberg continued in the 2000s with science fiction films A.I. Artificial Intelligence (2001), Minority Report (2002), and War of the Worlds (2005).
He also directed the adventure films The Adventures of Tintin (2011) and Ready Player One (2018); the historical dramas Amistad (1997), Munich (2005), War Horse (2011), Lincoln (2012), Bridge of Spies (2015) and The Post (2017); the musical West Side Story (2021); and the semi-autobiographical drama The Fabelmans (2022).
Steven And His Empire
With all the legacy that Spielberg has created and the title of the “most commercially successful director of the world”, fans are often curious about his net worth. Well, behold your heart.
Reportedly, Steven has a whopping net worth of over $9 billion. Yes, he is a successful billionaire.
He has a family of six children and his wife Kate Capshaw. And, his estimated yearly income is around $1 billion.
Steven’s Legacy and Honors
The 76-year-old producer has surely built an irreplaceable fort in Hollywood. He has created his unique imprint and we doubt anyone can ever replace him. Just like us, the critics haven’t failed to notice it as well.
Acknowledging his work, Steven has been awarded awards like three Academy Awards, two BAFTA Awards, and four Directors Guild of America Awards, as well as the AFI Life Achievement Award in 1995, the Kennedy Center Honor in 2006, the Cecil B. DeMille Award in 2009 and the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2015, and many others.
The awards and recognition his films have received are a different category as well.
His workmanship and creativity make him a deserving recipient of all his wealth and success.
Steven Spielberg, the great director-producer is in himself a legacy. His marvelous work has helped him build his empire of over $9 billion.
People can surely look up to him and derive inspiration from his story and creativity. A true artist: Steven Spielberg.
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