Darryl F. Zanuck
|Darryl F. Zanuck|
Zanuck in the 1940s
|Born||Darryl Francis Zanuck
September 5, 1902
|Died||December 22, 1979 (aged 77)
Palm Springs, California
Cause of death
|Westwood Village Memorial Park Cemetery|
|Other names||Gregory Rogers
|Spouse(s)||Virginia Fox (1924–56; separated)|
|Children||Darrylin Zanuck Jacks Pineda Carranza (1931– )
Susan Zanuck Hakim Savineau (1933–1980)
Richard D. Zanuck (1934–2012)
Darryl Francis Zanuck (September 5, 1902 – December 22, 1979) was an American film producer and studio executive; he earlier contributed stories for films starting in the silent era. He played a major part in the Hollywood studio system as one of its longest survivors (the length of his career was rivaled only by that of Adolph Zukor). He earned three Academy Awards during his tenure.
Zanuck was born in Wahoo, Nebraska, to Louise (née Torpin) and Frank Zanuck, who owned and operated a hotel in Wahoo. Zanuck was of part Swiss descent and was raised a Protestant. At age six, Zanuck and his mother moved to Los Angeles, where the better climate could improve her poor health. At age eight, he found his first movie job as an extra, but his disapproving father recalled him to Nebraska.
Upon returning to the US, he worked in many part-time jobs while seeking work as a writer. He found work producing movie plots, and sold his first story in 1922 to William Russell and his second to Irving Thalberg. Screenwriter Frederica Sagor Maas, story editor at Universal Pictures' New York office, stated that one of the stories Zanuck sent out to movie studios around this time was completely plagiarized from another author's work.
Zanuck then worked for Mack Sennett and FBO (where he wrote the serials The Telephone Girl and The Leather Pushers) and took that experience to Warner Brothers, where he wrote stories for Rin Tin Tin and under a number of pseudonyms wrote over forty scripts from 1924 to 1929, including Red Hot Tires (1925) and Old San Francisco (1927). He moved into management in 1929, and became head of production in 1931.
In 1933, Zanuck left Warners over a salary dispute with studio head Jack Warner. A few days later, he partnered with Joseph Schenck to found 20th Century Pictures, Inc. with financial help from Joseph's brother Nicholas Schenck and Louis B. Mayer, President and Studio head of Loew's, Inc and its subsidiary Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, along with William Goetz and Raymond Griffith. 20th Century released its material through United Artists. During that short time (1933–1935), 20th Century became the most successful independent movie studio of its time, breaking box-office records with 18 of its 19 films, all in profitability, including Clive of India, Les Miserables and The House of Rothschild. After a dispute with United Artists over stock ownership, Schenck and Zanuck negotiated and bought out the bankrupt Fox studios in 1935 to formed Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corporation. Zanuck was Vice President of Production of this new studio and took an interventionist approach, closely involving himself in film editing and producing. Like the other heads of Hollywood studios, during the war he was commissioned as a Colonel in the Army Signal Corps. He returned to Twentieth Century-Fox in 1944.
In 1956, he withdrew from the studio and left his wife, Virginia Fox, to move to Europe and concentrate on independent producing. Many of his later films were designed, in part, to promote the careers of his successive girlfriends, Bella Darvi, Irina Demick, and Geneviève Gilles, and several movies he produced featured his girlfriend of the moment, including the French singer Juliette Gréco.
He returned to control Fox in 1962, replacing Spyros Skouras, in a confrontation over the release of Zanuck's production of The Longest Day as the studio struggled to finish the difficult production of Cleopatra (1963). He made his son, Richard D. Zanuck, head of production. He later became involved in a power struggle with the board and his son, circa 1969. In May 1971, Zanuck was forced from "his" studio.
Haunted by his part in creating the "racist" Ham and Eggs at the Front (1927), Zanuck began tackling serious issues, breaking new ground by producing some of Hollywood's most important and controversial films. Long before it was fashionable to do so, Zanuck addressed issues such as racism (Pinky), anti-Semitism (Gentleman's Agreement), poverty (The Grapes of Wrath, Tobacco Road), unfair unionization and destruction of the environment (How Green Was My Valley), and institutionalised mistreatment of the mentally ill (The Snake Pit). After The Snake Pit was released, thirteen states changed their laws. For his contributions to the motion picture industry, Zanuck earned three Thalberg Awards of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences; after Zanuck's third win, the rules were changed to limit one Thalberg Award to one person. 20th Century Fox, the studio he co-founded and ran successfully for so many years, screens movies in its Darryl F. Zanuck Theater. Zanuck's star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame is located at 6336 Hollywood Blvd. Some say that Zanuck's reputation as an egotistical tyrant and voracious womanizer has tarnished his contribution to film.
|1932–33||Nominated||Outstanding Production||42nd Street|
|1934||Nominated||Outstanding Production||The House of Rothschild|
|1935||Nominated||Outstanding Production||Les Misérables|
|1937||Nominated||Outstanding Production||In Old Chicago|
|1938||Nominated||Outstanding Production||Alexander's Ragtime Band|
|1940||Nominated||Outstanding Production||The Grapes of Wrath|
|1941||Won||Outstanding Motion Picture||How Green Was My Valley|
|1944||Nominated||Outstanding Motion Picture||Wilson|
|1946||Nominated||Outstanding Motion Picture||The Razor's Edge|
|1947||Won||Outstanding Motion Picture||Gentleman's Agreement|
|1949||Nominated||Outstanding Motion Picture||Twelve O'Clock High|
|1950||Won||Outstanding Motion Picture||All About Eve|
|1956||Nominated||Best Picture||The King and I ("Darryl F. Zanuck presents" is seen in the opening credits)|
|1962||Nominated||Best Picture||The Longest Day|
Produced by Zanuck
Written by Zanuck
Zanuck in Documentaries; Television appearances
- 2013 Don't Say Yes Until I Finish Talking (Documentary)
- 2013 Don't Say No Until I Finish Talking: The Story of Richard D. Zanuck (Documentary)
- 2011 Hollywood Invasion (Documentary)
- 2011 Making the Boys (Documentary)
- 2010 Moguls & Movie Stars: A History of Hollywood (TV documentary)
- 2009 Coming Attractions: The History of the Movie Trailer (Documentary)
- 2009 1939: Hollywood's Greatest Year (TV documentary)
- 2006 Darryl F. Zanuck: A Dream Fulfilled (TV documentary)
- 2005 Filmmakers vs. Tycoons (Documentary)
- 2003 American Masters (TV documentary)
- None Without Sin
- Backstory (TV documentary)
- History vs. Hollywood (TV documentary)
- 2001 Cleopatra: The Film That Changed Hollywood (TV documentary)
- Great Books (TV documentary)
- The Grapes of Wrath (1999)
- Biography (TV documentary)
- 1997 20th Century-Fox: The First 50 Years (TV documentary)
- 1996 Rodgers & Hammerstein: The Sound of Movies (TV documentary)
- 1995 The First 100 Years: A Celebration of American Movies (TV documentary)
- 1995 Darryl F. Zanuck: 20th Century Filmmaker (TV documentary)
- 1995 The Casting Couch (Video documentary)
- 1975 20th Century Fox Presents...A Tribute to Darryl F. Zanuck (TV documentary)
- The David Frost Show (TV)
- Episode #3.211 (1971)
- Episode #2.203 (1970)
- 1968 D-Day Revisited (Documentary)
- What's My Line? (TV )
- Episode 16 September 1962 – Mystery Guest
- Episode 5 October 1958 – Mystery Guest
- Cinépanorama (TV documentary)
- Episode 11 (June 1960)
- Small World (TV Series)
- Episode #1.22 (1959) ... Himself
- The Ed Sullivan Show (TV Series)
- Episode #11.39 (1958)
- 1954 The CinemaScope Parade
- 1953 Screen Snapshots: Hollywood's Great Entertainers (Short)
- 1950 Screen Snapshots: The Great Showman (Short)
- 1946 Hollywood Park (Short)
- 1943 Show-Business at War (Documentary)
- 1943 At the Front (Documentary)
- 1943 At the Front in North Africa with the U.S. Army (Documentary)
- 2012 "Smash" - The Understudy (Television Show)
- Per IMDb.
- Gussow, Mel (September 1, 2002). "FILM; Darryl F. Zanuck, Action Hero of the Studio Era". The New York Times. Retrieved May 1, 2010.
- Maas, Frederica Sagor (1999). The Shocking Miss Pilgrim: A Writer in Early Hollywood. Lexington, KY: The University Press of Kentucky. pp. 44–45. ISBN 0-8131-2122-1.
- Ilias Chrissochoidis (ed.), Spyros P. Skouras, Memoirs (1893–1953) (Stanford, 2013), 104.
- John Murray (2008). Charlotte Mosley, ed. In Tearing Haste: Letters Between Deborah Devonshire and Patrick Leigh-Fermor.
- Hift, Fred (September 1, 1994). "The Longest Day". Cigar Aficionado. Retrieved December 6, 2011.
- Darryl Francis Zanuck at Find a Grave
- Behlmer, Rudy (editor) (1993). Memo from Darryl F. Zanuck: The Golden Years at Twentieth Century-Fox. Grove. ISBN 0-8021-1540-3.
- Chrissochoidis, Ilias (editor) (2013). The Cleopatra Files: Selected Documents from the Spyros P. Skouras Archive. Brave World. ISBN 978-0-61582-919-7.
- Chrissochoidis, Ilias (ed.). CinemaScope: Selected Documents from the Spyros P. Skouras Archive. Brave World, 2013. ISBN 978-0-61589-880-3.
- Custen, George F. Twentieth Century's Fox: Darryl F. Zanuck And The Culture Of Hollywood. Basic Books (November 1997) ISBN 046507619X
- Dunne, John Gregory. The Studio. Farrar, Straus & Giroux (January 1969) ISBN 0374271127
- Mosley, Leonard (1984). Zanuck: The Rise and Fall of Hollywood's Last Tycoon. Little, Brown. ISBN 0-316-58538-6.
- Farber, Stephen. Hollywood Dynasties, Putnam Group (July 1984) ISBN 0887150004
- Harris, Marlys J. The Zanucks of Hollywood: The Dark Legacy of an American Dynasty, Crown (June 1989) ISBN 0517570203
- Thackrey Jr., Thomas. (December 23, 1979). "Darryl F. Zanuck, Last of Movie Moguls, Dies at 77". Los Angeles Times, p. 1.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Darryl F. Zanuck.|
- Darryl F. Zanuck at the Internet Movie Database
- The Zanucks: Reel Royalty from CBS News Sunday Morning, July 10, 2005. Accessed November 30, 2006.