Picture for Steven Spielberg

Born:
December 18, 1946

Birthname:
Steven Allan Spielberg

Hometown:
Cincinnati, Ohio

Steven Spielberg

BIO:

Steven Spielberg is a three-time Academy Award winner, earning two Oscars for Best Director and Best Picture for "Schindler's List," and a third Oscar for Best Director for "Saving Private Ryan." He has also received Best Director Oscar nominations for "E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial," "Raiders of the Lost Ark" and "Close Encounters of the Third Kind."

In 1994, Spielberg's internationally lauded "Schindler's List" emerged as the year's most honored film, receiving a total of seven Oscars , including the aforementioned nods for Best Picture and Best Director. The film also collected Best Picture awards from many of the major critics organizations, in addition to seven BAFTA Awards, including two for Spielberg. He also won the Golden Globe Award and received a Directors Guild of America (DGA) Award.

Spielberg's critically acclaimed World War II drama "Saving Private Ryan," starring Tom Hanks, was the highest-grossing release (domestically) of 1998. The film also won five Oscars, including the one for Spielberg as Best Director, two Golden Globe Awards for Best Picture (Drama) and Best Director, and numerous critics groups awards for Best Picture and Best Director. In addition, Spielberg won a DGA Award and a Producers Guild of America (PGA) Award. That year, the PGA also presented Spielberg with the prestigious Milestone Award for his historic contribution to the motion picture industry.

Spielberg won his first DGA Award for "The Color Purple" and also earned DGA Award nominations for "E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial," "Raiders of the Lost Ark," "Close Encounters of the Third Kind," "Empire of the Sun," "Jaws" and "Amistad." With nine in all, Spielberg has received more DGA Award nominations than any director in history and, in 2000, he received the DGA's Lifetime Achievement Award. He is also the recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Film Institute and the prestigious Irving G. Thalberg Award from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. More recently, Spielberg was presented with the Lifetime Achievement Award from Italy's David Di Donatello Committee.

For television, on the heels of "Saving Private Ryan," Spielberg and Tom Hanks executive produced the miniseries "Band of Brothers" for HBO and DreamWorks Television. Based on the book of the same name by the late Stephen Ambrose, the fact-based World War II project won both Emmy and Golden Globe Awards for Best Miniseries. Spielberg and Hanks are currently in development on an as-yet-untitled World War II miniseries, focusing on the battles in the Pacific theatre.

Last year, Spielberg won another Emmy Award for Outstanding Miniseries for "Steven Spielberg Presents Taken," a Sci Fi Channel drama about alien abduction, which he executive produced. He is currently developing another miniseries to air on the Sci Fi Channel called "Nine Lives." Also for television, Spielberg is currently executive producing "Into the West," an original limited series Western to air next year on the TNT cable network.

Born in Cincinnati, Ohio, Spielberg was raised in the suburbs of Haddonfield, New Jersey and Scottsdale, Arizona. He started making amateur films while still in his teens, later studying film at California State University, Long Beach. In 1969, his 22-minute short "Amblin" was shown at the Atlanta Film Festival, which led to a deal with Universal, making him the youngest director ever to be signed to a long-term deal with a major Hollywood studio.

Four years later, he directed the suspenseful telefilm "Duel," which garnered both critical and audience attention. He made his feature film directorial debut on "The Sugarland Express" from a screenplay he co-wrote. In addition to the aforementioned films, his earlier film credits as a director include "Always," "Hook," and the "Raiders of the Lost Ark" sequels "Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom" and "Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade."

Spielberg's more recent films include "Catch Me If You Can," starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Tom Hanks, and the futuristic thriller "Minority Report," starring Tom Cruise. He also wrote, directed and produced "A.I. Artificial Intelligence," which was realized from the vision of the late Stanley Kubrick. In 2000, Spielberg won the Stanley Kubrick Brittania Award for Excellence in Film, presented by BAFTA - Los Angeles.

In 1984, Spielberg formed his own production company, Amblin Entertainment. Under the Amblin banner, he has served as a producer or executive producer on more than a dozen films, including such successes as "Gremlins," "The Goonies," "Back to the Future I, II, and III," "Who Framed Roger Rabbit," "An American Tail," "The Land Before Time," "The Flintstones," "Casper," "Twister," "The Mask of Zorro," "Men in Black" and "Men in Black II." Amblin Entertainment also produces the hit series "ER" with Warner Bros. Television.

In October 1994, Spielberg partnered with Jeffrey Katzenberg and David Geffen to form the new studio DreamWorks SKG. Since then, the studio's successes have included three consecutive Best Picture Oscars for "American Beauty," "Gladiator" and "A Beautiful Mind," the latter two in partnership with Universal.

Spielberg has also devoted his time and resources to many philanthropic causes. The impact of his experience making "Schindler's List" led him to establish the Righteous Persons Foundation using all his profits from the film. He also founded Survivors of the Shoah Visual History Foundation, which has recorded more than 50,000 Holocaust survivor testimonies. In addition, Spielberg executive produced "The Last Days," the Shoah Foundation's third documentary, which won the Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature. He is also the Chairman Emeritus of the Starbright Foundation, which combines the efforts of pediatric health care, technology and entertainment to empower seriously ill children.

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