Monday, May 26, 2008

Sydney Pollack - Iconic American Director

Sydney Pollack, who died of cancer on May 26, 2008 at 73, was an iconic American director best known for winning two Oscars for his hit film Out Of Africa in 1985 namely Best Director and Best Picture.

Born on July 1, 1934, in Lafayette, Indiana, he directed over 21 films and 10 television shows. He also acted in 30 films and produced 44 films.

Besides Out Of Africa, the best known films directed or produced by Pollack included Tootsie (1982), The Yakuza (1975), The Way We Were (1972), The Interpreter (2005), Sabrina (1995), The Firm (1993), Havana (1990), The Talented Mr Ripley (1999), Iris (2001), The Quiet American (2002) and Cold Mountain (2003).

The best known films he acted in were Tootsie (1982), The Interpreter (2005), Eyes Wide Shut (1999), Changing Lanes (2002) and Michael Clayton (2007) which starred George Clooney.

He also appeared in the hit TV series Will And Grace.

Pollack, of Latvian-Israeli ancestry, was the son of boxer and pharmacist David Pollack and his wife Rebecca Miller.

His brother is costume designer, producer and actor Bernie Pollack.

Pollack first directed the television series The Fugitive and Alfred Hitchcock Presents in the 1960s.

Pollack is survived by his wife Claire Griswold, two children (his third child, Steven, died in an air crash in 1993) and 6 grandchildren.