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Legendary Filmmaker Dies at age 95

Legendary filmmaker Billy Wilder, who went from being a crime reporter in Vienna and a refugee from Nazism to becoming the creator of such classic films as Some Like It Hot and Sunset Boulevard, died at the age of 95 at his home in Beverly Hills this past Wednesday. With an extensive movie career that spans several decades, Wilder was the recipient of six Oscars and was the first filmmaker to win three Academy Awards in a single year. He was a master storyteller who specialized in exploring the dark side of American life with a cynicism and humor that few movie makers have ever matched. A writer, director, and producer, Wilder produced some of the industry's best dramas, like Double Indemnity and The Lost Weekend, as well as some of its funniest farces -- Some Like It Hot and The Fortune Cookie. He also was the man who first paired Jack Lemmon and Walter Matthau, creating one of the screen's most beloved comic teams.

Wilder was born Samuel Wilder on June 22, 1906, in the Polish town of Sucha, then part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. His mother nicknamed him Billy because of her fascination with the Western hero Buffalo Bill. In 1924, after briefly attending the University of Vienna, Wilder landed a job as a police reporter. His aggressive journalism led him to Berlin, where, enchanted by the city's film community, he decided to become a movie maker. For more information on this story, viewers may access the first two articles published by the United International Press and the Associated Press respectively. Those interested in a list of Wilder's many films may access the third site, also by the Associated Press. Sites four and five both give tribute to this filmmaking icon. Offered by the American Cinema, the first tribute provides biographical information on Wilder, as well as information on his filmography, academy awards, and co-screen writers. The second tribute offers various links to other Billy Wilder sites. Finally, the last site list quotations by Billy Wilder taken from "Conversations with Wilder" by Cameron Crowe.
Scout Publication
Date of Scout Publication
March 29th, 2002
Date Of Record Creation
April 7th, 2003 at 5:12pm
Date Of Record Release
April 7th, 2003 at 5:12pm
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