Jean Negulesco

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Jean Negulesco
Jean Negulesco in 1986
Born 29 February 1900 [O. S.]
Craiova, Dolj, Romania
Died 18 July 1993
Marbella, Andalusia, Spain
Spouse(s) Dusty Anderson
(m. 1946–1993)

Jean Negulesco (born Ioan Negulescu; 29 February 1900 [O. S.] – 18 July 1993) was a Romanian-American film director and screenwriter.[1]


Born in Craiova, he attended Carol I High School. In 1915 he moved to Vienna, and then went to Bucharest in 1919, where he worked as a painter before becoming a stage decorator in Paris. In 1927 he went to New York City for an exhibition of his paintings and settled there.

In 1934 he entered the film industry, first as a sketch artist, then as an assistant producer, second unit director. In the late 1930s he became a director and screenwriter. He made his reputation at Warner Brothers by directing short subjects, particularly a series of band shorts featuring unusual camera angles and dramatic use of shadows and silhouettes.

Negulesco's first feature film as director was Singapore Woman (1941). In 1948 he was nominated for an Academy Award for Directing for Johnny Belinda. In 1955 he won the BAFTA Award for Best Film for How to Marry a Millionaire. His 1959 movie, The Best of Everything, was on Entertainment Weekly's Top 50 Cult Films of All-Time list.

From the late 1960s he lived in Marbella, Spain, where he died, at age 93, of heart failure.

During his Hollywood career and in his 1984 autobiography, Negulesco claimed to have been born on 29 February 1900; he was apparently motivated to make this statement because birthdays on Leap Year Day are comparatively rare. In fact, 1900 was not a leap year, so there was no 29 February in 1900. Negulesco's autobiography (in which this claim appears) is appropriately titled Things I Did and Things I Think I Did. [According to the website "Calendars through the Ages", Romania did not convert to the Gregorian Calendar until 1919. Therefore, in Romania, the calendar for 1900 did have a 29 February.]

He has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6200 Hollywood Blvd.



  1. ^ David Shipman, "Obituary: Jean Negulesco", Independent (London), 22 July 1993.