Altman at the 1992 Cannes Film Festival
|Born||Robert Bernard Altman
February 20, 1925
Kansas City, Missouri, United States
|Died||November 20, 2006
West Hollywood, United States
|Occupation||Film director and screenwriter|
|Influenced by||Jean Renoir, Akira Kurosawa, Ingmar Bergman|
|Influenced||Paul Thomas Anderson|
|Spouse(s)||LaVonne Elmer (1946–51)
Lotus Corelli (1954–57)
Kathryn Reed (1959–2006)
Robert Bernard Altman (February 20, 1925 – November 20, 2006) was an American film director and screenwriter known for making films that are highly naturalistic, but with a stylized perspective. In 2006, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences recognized his body of work with an Academy Honorary Award.
Early life and career 
Altman was born in Kansas City, Missouri, the son of Helen (née Matthews), a Mayflower descendant from Nebraska, and Bernard Clement Altman, a wealthy insurance salesman and amateur gambler, who came from an upper-class family. Altman's ancestry was German, English and Irish; his paternal grandfather, Frank Altman, Sr., anglicized the spelling of the family name from "Altmann" to "Altman". Altman had a Catholic upbringing, but he did not continue to practice as a Catholic as an adult, although he has been referred to as "a sort of Catholic" and a Catholic director. He was educated at Jesuit schools, including Rockhurst High School, in Kansas City. He graduated from Wentworth Military Academy in Lexington, Missouri in 1943.
In 1943 Altman joined the United States Army Air Forces at the age of 18. During World War II, Altman flew more than 50 bombing missions as a crewman on a B-24 Liberator with the 307th Bomb Group in Borneo and the Dutch East Indies.
Upon his discharge in 1946, Altman moved to California. He worked in publicity for a company that had invented a tattooing machine to identify dogs. He entered filmmaking on a whim, selling a script to RKO for the 1948 picture Bodyguard, which he co-wrote with George W. George. Altman's immediate success encouraged him to move to New York City, where he attempted to forge a career as a writer. Having enjoyed little success, in 1949 he returned to Kansas City, where he accepted a job as a director and writer of industrial films for the Calvin Company. In February 2012, an early Calvin film directed by Altman, Modern Football (1951), was found by filmmaker Gary Huggins.
Altman directed some 65 industrial films and documentaries before being hired by a local businessman in 1956 to write and direct a feature film in Kansas City on juvenile delinquency. The film, titled The Delinquents, made for $60,000, was purchased by United Artists for $150,000, and released in 1957. While primitive, this teen exploitation film contained the foundations of Altman's later work in its use of casual, naturalistic dialogue. With its success, Altman moved from Kansas City to California for the last time. He co-directed The James Dean Story (1957), a documentary rushed into theaters to capitalize on the actor's recent death and marketed to his emerging cult following.
Television work 
Alfred Hitchcock noticed Altman's first two features and hired him as a director for his CBS anthology series Alfred Hitchcock Presents. After just two episodes, Altman resigned due to differences with a producer. The exposure enabled him to begin a successful TV career; he directed series including Bonanza, Combat!, and the Kraft Television Theater. He also was a director of the DuMont drama series Pulse of the City (1953–1954).
Through this early work on industrial films and TV series, Altman experimented with narrative technique and developed his characteristic use of overlapping dialogue. He also learned to work quickly and efficiently on a limited budget. During his TV period, though frequently fired for refusing to conform to network mandates, as well as insisting on expressing political subtexts and antiwar sentiments during the Vietnam years, Altman always was able to gain assignments. In 1964, the producers decided to expand "Once Upon a Savage Night", one of his episodes of Kraft Suspense Theatre, for theatrical release under the name, Nightmare in Chicago.
Two years later, Altman was hired to direct the low-budget space travel feature Countdown, but was fired within days of the project's conclusion because he had refused to edit the film to a manageable length. He did not direct another film until That Cold Day in the Park (1969), which was a critical and box-office disaster.
Mainstream success 
In 1969 Altman was offered the script for MASH, an adaptation of a little-known Korean War-era novel satirizing life in the armed services; more than a dozen other filmmakers had passed on it. Altman had been hesitant to take the production, and the shoot was so tumultuous that Elliott Gould and Donald Sutherland tried to have Altman fired over his unorthodox filming methods. Nevertheless, MASH was widely hailed as an immediate classic upon its 1970 release. It won the Palme d'Or at the 1970 Cannes Film Festival and netted six Academy Award nominations. It was Altman's highest-grossing film, released during a time of increasing anti-war sentiment in the United States.
Now recognized as a major talent, Altman notched critical successes with McCabe & Mrs. Miller (1971), a Western known for its gritty portrayal of the American frontier; The Long Goodbye (1973), a controversial adaptation of the Raymond Chandler novel (scripted by Leigh Brackett) now ranked as a seminal influence on the neo-noir subgenre; Thieves Like Us (1974), an adaptation of the Edward Anderson novel previously filmed by Nicholas Ray as They Live by Night (1949); and Nashville (1975), which had a strong political theme set against the world of country music. The stars of the film wrote their own songs; Keith Carradine won an Academy Award for the song "I'm Easy". None of these films grossed in excess of $10 million, but most were profitable; Nashville grossed over $9.9 million on a $2.2 million budget, a strategy that Altman would depend upon for funding for much of his career. Although his films were often met with divisive notices, many of the prominent film critics of the era (including Pauline Kael, Vincent Canby and Roger Ebert) remained steadfastly loyal to his oeuvre throughout the decade.
Audiences took some time to appreciate his films, and he did not want to have to satisfy studio officials. In 1970, following the release of MASH, he founded Lion's Gate Films to have independent production freedom. (It has no relation to today's Canada/U.S.-based entertainment company Lionsgate). The films he made through his company included Brewster McCloud, A Wedding, 3 Women, and Quintet.
Later career and renaissance 
In 1980, he directed the musical Popeye. Produced by Robert Evans and written by Jules Feiffer, the film was based on the comic strip/cartoon of the same name and starred the comedian Robin Williams in his film debut. Designed as a vehicle to increase Altman's commercial clout following a series of critically acclaimed but commercially unsuccessful low-budget films in the late 1970s (including 3 Women, A Wedding and Quintet), the production (filmed on location in Malta) was beleaguered by heavy drug and alcohol use among most of the cast and crew, including the director; Altman reportedly clashed with Evans, Williams (who threatened to leave the film) and songwriter Harry Nilsson (who departed midway through the shoot, leaving Van Dyke Parks to finish the orchestrations). Though critically unsuccessful, the film grossed $60 million worldwide on a $20 million budget and was the second highest-grossing film Altman had directed to that point.
In 1981, the director sold Lion's Gate to producer Jonathan Taplin after his political satire Health shot in 1979 was still shelved in 1980 by longtime distributor 20th Century Fox following tepid test screenings in the wake of the departure of his avowed partisan Alan Ladd, Jr. from the studio. Unable to secure major financing in the post-New Hollywood blockbuster era because of his long-established mercurial reputation and the particularly tumultuous events surrounding the production of Popeye, Altman began to "direct literate dramatic properties on shoestring budgets for stage, home video, television, and limited theatrical release," including the acclaimed Secret Honor and Come Back to the Five and Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean, an adaptation of a play that Altman had directed on Broadway. An abortive return to Hollywood filmmaking, the buddy film O.C. and Stiggs was shelved by MGM for nearly two years and received a belated limited commercial release in 1987. He also garnered a good deal of acclaim for his TV "mockumentary" Tanner '88, based on a presidential campaign, for which he earned an Emmy Award and regained critical favor. Still, widespread popularity with audiences continued to elude him.
He revitalized his career with The Player (1992), a satire of Hollywood. Co-produced by the influential David Brown (The Sting, Jaws, Cocoon), the film was nominated for three Academy Awards, including Best Director. While he did not win the Oscar, he was awarded Best Director by the Cannes Film Festival, BAFTA, and the New York Film Critics Circle.
Altman then directed Short Cuts (1993), an ambitious adaptation of several short stories by Raymond Carver, which portrayed the lives of various citizens of Los Angeles over the course of several days. The film's large cast and intertwining of many different storylines were similar to his large-cast films of the 1970s; he won the Golden Lion at the 1993 Venice International Film Festival and another Oscar nomination for Best Director. In 1996, Altman directed Kansas City, expressing his love of 1930s jazz through a complicated kidnapping story. He was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1999.
Altman directed Gosford Park (2001), and his portrayal of a large-cast, British country house mystery was included on many critics' lists of the ten best films of that year. It won the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay (Julian Fellowes) plus six more nominations, including two for Altman, as Best Director and Best Picture.
Working with independent studios such as the now-shuttered Fine Line, Artisan (which was absorbed into today's Lionsgate), and USA Films (now Focus Features), gave Altman the edge in making the kinds of films he has always wanted to make without studio interference. A film version of Garrison Keillor's public radio series A Prairie Home Companion was released in June 2006. Altman was still developing new projects up until his death, including a film based on Hands on a Hard Body: The Documentary (1997).
In 2006, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences awarded Altman an Academy Honorary Award for Lifetime Achievement. During his acceptance speech, he revealed that he had received a heart transplant approximately ten or eleven years earlier. The director then quipped that perhaps the Academy had acted prematurely in recognizing the body of his work, as he felt like he might have four more decades of life ahead of him.
Death and legacy 
Altman died on November 20, 2006, at age 81 at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in West Hollywood. According to his production company in New York, Sandcastle 5 Productions, he died of complications from leukemia.
Altman is survived by his wife, Kathryn Reed Altman; six children, Christine Westphal, Michael Altman, Stephen Altman (his production designer of choice for many films), Connie Corriere, Robert Reed Altman, and Matthew Altman; 12 grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren.
The film director Paul Thomas Anderson dedicated his 2007 film There Will Be Blood to Altman. Anderson had worked as a standby director on A Prairie Home Companion for insurance purposes, in the event the ailing 80-year-old Altman was unable to finish shooting.
In 2009 the University of Michigan made the winning bid for the Altman archives: approximately 900 boxes of personal papers, scripts, legal, business and financial records, photographs, props and related material; the total collection measures over 1,000 linear feet. Altman had filmed Secret Honor at the university, as well as directed several operas there.
Directing style 
Altman favored stories expressing the interrelationships among several characters; he stated that he was more interested in character motivation than in intricate plots. He tended to sketch out only a basic plot for the film, referring to the screenplay as a "blueprint" for action. He allowed his actors to improvise dialogue and was known as an "actor's director," a reputation that attracted many notable actors to work in his large casts.
To convey a naturalistic effect, he recorded the characters talking over each other, allowing the audience to hear only scraps of dialogue. He noted on the DVD commentary of McCabe & Mrs. Miller that he uses this technique, together with leaving elements of the plot for the audience to infer, because he wants people to pay attention and become engaged in the film. During the filming, he wore a headset to ensure that important dialogue could be heard, without emphasizing it. He wanted his films to be rated R (by the MPAA rating system) to keep children out of his audiences; he did not believe they had the patience and attention for his films. Movie studios wanted the films rated for the largest possible audiences to gain increased revenues.
Personal life 
In the 1960s, Altman lived for nine years in Mandeville Canyon in Brentwood, California. He resided in Malibu throughout the 1970s but sold that home and the Lion's Gate production company in 1981. "I had no choice", he told the New York Times. "Nobody was answering the phone" after the flop of Popeye. He moved his family and business headquarters to New York City, but eventually moved back to Malibu, where he lived until his death.
In November 2000, he claimed that he would move to Paris if George W. Bush were elected, but joked that he had meant Paris, Texas when it came to pass. He noted that "the state would be better off if he (Bush) is out of it." Altman was an outspoken marijuana user, and served as a member of the NORML advisory board. He is also an atheist and an anti-war activist. He was one of numerous notable public figures, including the linguist Noam Chomsky and the actress Susan Sarandon, who signed the "Not In My Name" declaration opposing the 2003 invasion of Iraq.
|1949||Honeymoon for Harriet||Short Industrial Film: International Harvester|
|1951||Modern Football||Short Industrial Film: Official Sports Film Service|
|The Dirty Look||Short Industrial Film: Gulf Oil|
|1952||The Last Mile||Short Industrial Film: Caterpillar Tractor Company|
|The Sound of Bells||Short Industrial Film: Goodrich Corporation|
|King Basketball||Short Industrial Film: Official Sports Film Service|
|1953||Modern Baseball||Short Industrial Film: Official Sports Film Service|
|1954||The Builders||Short Industrial Film: Wire Reinforcement Institute|
|Better Football||Short Industrial Film: Official Sports Film Service|
|The Perfect Crime||Short Industrial Film: Caterpillar Tractor Company|
|1955||The Magic Bond||Short Industrial Film: Veterans of Foreign Wars|
|1965||The Katherine Reed Story||Short Documentary|
|Pot au feu||Short|
|1966||Girl Talk||ColorSonics Short|
|The Party||ColorSonics Short|
|Speak Low||ColorSonics Short|
|Ebb Tide||ColorSonics Short|
Motion pictures 
Television work 
television films and miniseries 
- Nightmare in Chicago (1964) [previously "Once Upon a Savage Night" in Kraft Suspense Theater]
- Precious Blood (1982) – Television film written by Frank South
- Rattlesnake in a Cooler (1982) – Television film written by Frank South
- Secret Honor (1984)
- The Laundromat (1985) (60 min.)
- Basements (1987) – two one-act plays by Harold Pinter: The Dumb Waiter and The Room (the former was released to video as its own feature by Prism Entertainment)
- Tanner '88 (1988) – six-hour mini-series for HBO
- The Caine Mutiny Court Martial (1988) – Television film based on the play by Herman Wouk
- Vincent & Theo (1990) – British Mini-series in 4 parts, later released in edited form worldwide as feature film.
- McTeague (1992) – an opera for PBS
- The Real McTeague (1993) – making of "McTeague", also for PBS
- Black and Blue (1993) – an Emmy nominated filmed play which aired on PBS' "Great Performances"
- Robert Altman's Jazz '34 (1996) – PBS special about the music from Kansas City
- Tanner on Tanner (2004) – two-hour mini-series for the Sundance Channel, a follow-up to Tanner '88
Television episodes 
- Alfred Hitchcock Presents (1957–58)
- ep. 3–9: "The Young One" (air-date December 1, 1957)
- ep. 3–15: "Together" (a.d. January 12, 1958)
- M Squad (1958) ep. 1–21: "Lover's Lane Killing" (a.d. February 14, 1958)
- The Millionaire aka If You Had A Million (1958–59)
- directed by Altman
- ep No. 148 / 5–14: "Pete Hopper: Afraid of the Dark" (a.d. December 10, 1958)
- ep No. 162 / 5–28: "Henry Banning: The Show Off" (a.d. April 1, 1959)
- ep No. 185 / 6–14: "Jackson Greene: The Beatnik" (a.d. December 22, 1959)
- written by Altman
- ep No. 160 / 5–26: "Alicia Osante: Beauty and the Sailor" (a.d. March 18, 1959)
- ep No. 174 / 6-3: "Lorraine Dagget: The Beach Story" [story] (a.d. September 29, 1959)
- ep No. 183 / 6–12: "Andrew C. Cooley: Andy and Clara" (a.d. December 8, 1959)
- Whirlybirds (1958–59)
- ep. No. 71 / 2–32: "The Midnight Show" (a.d. December 8, 1958)
- ep. No. 79 / 3-1: "Guilty of Old Age" (a.d. April 13, 1959)
- ep. No. 80 / 3-2: "A Matter of Trust" (a.d. April 6, 1959)
- ep. No. 81 / 3-3: "Christmas in June" (a.d. April 20, 1959)
- ep. No. 82 / 3–4: "Til Death Do Us Part" (unknown air-date, probably April 27, 1959)
- ep. No. 83 / 3–5: "Time Limit" (a.d. May 4, 1959)
- ep. No. 84 / 3–6: "Experiment X-74" (a.d. May 11, 1959)
- ep. No. 87 / 3–9: "The Challenge" (a.d. June 1, 1959)
- ep. No. 88 / 3–10: "The Big Lie" (a.d. June 8, 1959)
- ep. No. 91 / 3–13: "The Perfect Crime" (a.d. June 29, 1959)
- ep. No. 92 / 3–14: "The Unknown Soldier" (a.d. July 6, 1959)
- ep. No. 93 / 3–15: "Two of a Kind" (a.d. July 13, 1959)
- ep. No. 94 / 3–16: "In Ways Mysterious" (a.d. July 20, 1959)
- ep. No. 97 / 3–19: "The Black Maria" (a.d. August 10, 1959)
- ep. No. 98 / 3–20: "The Sitting Duck" (a.d. August 17, 1959)
- U.S. Marshal (original title: Sheriff of Cochise) (1959)
- ep. 4–17: "The Triple Cross"
- ep. 4–23: "Shortcut to Hell"
- ep. 4–25: "R.I.P." (a.d. June 6, 1959)
- uncertain; some sources cite Altman on these episodes; no known source cites anybody else
- ep. 4–18: "The Third Miracle"
- ep. 4–31: "Kill or Be Killed"
- ep. 4–32: "Backfire"
- ep. "Tapes For Murder"
- ep. "Special Delivery"
- ep. "Paper Bullets"
- ep. "Tarnished Star"
- Troubleshooters (1959) (13 episodes)
- Hawaiian Eye (1959) ep. 8: "Three Tickets to Lani" (a.d. November 25, 1959)
- Sugarfoot (1959–60)
- ep. No. 47 / 3–7: "Apollo With A Gun" (a.d. December 8, 1959)
- ep. No. 50 / 3–10: "The Highbinder" (a.d. January 19, 1960)
- Westinghouse Desilu Playhouse (1960)
- ep. "The Sound of Murder" (a.d. January 1, 1960)
- ep. "Death of a Dream"
- The Gale Storm Show aka Oh! Susanna (1960) ep. No. 125 / 4–25: "It's Magic" (a.d. March 17, 1960)
- Bronco (1960) ep No. 41 / 3-1: "The Mustangers" (a.d. October 17, 1960)
- Maverick (1960) ep. #90: "Bolt From the Blue" (a.d. November 27, 1960)
- The Roaring '20s (1960–61)
- ep. 1–5: "The Prairie Flower" (a.d. November 12, 1960)
- ep. 1–6: "Brother's Keeper" (a.d. November 19, 1960)
- ep. 1–8: "White Carnation" (a.d. December 3, 1960)
- ep. 1–12: "Dance Marathon" (a.d. January 14, 1961)
- ep. 1–15: "Two a Day" (a.d. February 4, 1961)
- ep. 1–28&29: "Right Off the Boat" Parts 1 & 2 (a.d. May 13/20, 1961)
- ep. 1–31: "Royal Tour" (a.d. June 3, 1961)
- ep. 2–4: "Standing Room Only" (a.d. October 28, 1961)
- Bonanza (1960–61)
- ep. 2–13: "Silent Thunder" (a.d. December 10, 1960)
- ep. 2–19: "Bank Run" (a.d. January 28, 1961)
- ep. 2–25: "The Duke" (a.d. March 11, 1961)
- ep. 2–28: "The Rival" (a.d. April 15, 1961)
- ep. 2–31: "The Secret" (a.d. May 6, 1961)
- ep. 2–32 "The Dream Riders" (a.d. May 20, 1961)
- ep. 2–34: "Sam Hill" (a.d. June 3, 1961)
- ep. 3–7: "The Many Faces of Gideon Finch" (a.d. November 5, 1961)
- Lawman (1961) ep. No. 92 / 3–16: "The Robbery" (a.d. January 1, 1961)
- Surfside 6 (1961) ep. 1–18: "Thieves Among Honor" (a.d. Jan 30, 1961)
- Peter Gunn (1958) ep. 3–28: "The Murder Bond" (a.d. April 24, 1961)
- Bus Stop (1961–62)
- ep. 4: "The Covering Darkness" (a.d. October 22, 1961)
- ep. 5: "Portrait of a Hero" (a.d. October 29, 1961)
- ep. 8: "Accessory By Consent" (a.d. November 19, 1961)
- ep. 10: "A Lion Walks Among Us" (a.d. December 3, 1961)
- ep. 12: "... And the Pursuit of Evil" (a.d. December 17, 1961)
- ep. 15: "Summer Lightning" (a.d. January 7, 1962)
- ep. 23: "Door Without a Key" (a.d. March 4, 1962)
- ep. 25: "County General" [possibly failed pilot] (a.d. March 18, 1962)
- Route 66 (1961)
- ep. #40/2-10: "Some of the People, Some of the Time' (a.d. December 1, 61)
- ep. 3–17: "A Gift For A Warrior" (a.d. January 18, 1963) – often incorrectly cited, Altman did not direct this
- The Gallant Men (1962) pilot: "Battle Zone" (a.d. October 5, 1962)
- Combat! (1962–63)
- ep. 1-1: "Forgotten Front" (a.d. October 2, 1962)
- ep. 1–2: "Rear Echelon Commandos" (a.d. October 9, 1962)
- ep. 1–4: "Any Second Now" (a.d. October 23, 1962)
- ep. 1–7: "Escape to Nowhere" (a.d. December 20, 1962)
- ep. 1–9: "Cat and Mouse" (a.d. December 4, 1962)
- ep. 1–10: "I Swear By Apollo" (a.d. December 11, 1962)
- ep. 1–12: "The Prisoner" (a.d. December 25, 1962)
- ep. 1–16: "The Volunteer" (a.d. January 22, 1963)
- ep. 1–20: "Off Limits" (a.d. February 19, 1963)
- ep. 1–23: "Survival" (a.d. March 12, 1963)
- Kraft Suspense Theatre (1963)
- ep 1–8: "The Long Lost Life of Edward Smalley" (also writer) (a.d. December 12, 1963)
- ep 1–9: "The Hunt" (also writer) (a.d. December 19, 1963)
- ep 1–21: "Once Upon a Savage Night"
- released as Television film Nightmare in Chicago in 1964
- The Long Hot Summer (1965) pilot
- Nightwatch (1968) pilot: "The Suitcase"
- Premiere (1968) ep. "Walk in the Sky" (a.d. July 15, 1968)
- Saturday Night Live (1977) ep. No. 39 / 2–16 "h: Sissy Spacek", seg. "Sissy's Roles" (a.d. March 12, 1977)
- Gun (aka Robert Altman's Gun) (1997) ep. 4: "All the President's Women" (a.d. May 10, 1997)
- this episode, along with another, was released on DVD as Gun: Fatal Betrayal; subsequently, the entire six-episode series was released
Awards and nominations 
- 1971: Best Director (MASH, nominated)
- 1976: Best Picture (Nashville, nominated)
- 1976: Best Director (Nashville, nominated)
- 1993: Best Director (The Player, nominated)
- 1994: Best Director (Short Cuts, nominated)
- 2002: Best Picture (Gosford Park, nominated)
- 2002: Best Director (Gosford Park, nominated)
- 2006: Honorary Oscar (won)
- 1971: Best Direction (MASH, nominated)
- 1979: Best Direction (A Wedding, nominated)
- 1979: Best Screenplay (A Wedding, nominated)
- 1993: Best Film (The Player, nominated)
- 1993: Best Direction (The Player, won)
- 2002: Alexander Korda Award for Best British Film (Gosford Park, won)
- 2002: David Lean Award for Direction (Gosford Park, nominated)
- 1976: Golden Berlin Bear (Buffalo Bill and the Indians, or Sitting Bull's History Lesson, won)
- 1985: FIPRESCI Prize – Forum of New Cinema (Secret Honor, won)
- 1999: Golden Berlin Bear (Cookie's Fortune, nominated)
- 1999: Prize of the Guild of German Art House Cinemas (Cookie's Fortune, won)
- 2002: Honorary Golden Berlin Bear (won)
- 2006: Golden Berlin Bear (A Prairie Home Companion, nominated)
- 2006: Reader Jury of the "Berliner Morgenpost" (A Prairie Home Companion, won)
- 1970: Golden Palm (MASH, won)
- 1972: Golden Palm (Images, nominated)
- 1977: Golden Palm (3 Women, nominated)
- 1986: Golden Palm (Fool for Love, nominated)
- 1987: Golden Palm (Aria, nominated)
- 1992: Golden Palm (The Player, nominated)
- 1992: Best Director (The Player, won)
- 1996: Golden Palm (Kansas City, nominated)
- 1971: Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Motion Pictures (MASH, nominated)
- 1976: Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Motion Pictures (Nashville, nominated)
- 1993: Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Motion Pictures (The Player, nominated)
- 1994: Lifetime Achievement Award (won)
- 2005: Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Movies for Television (Tanner on Tanner, nominated)
- 1989: Outstanding Directing in a Drama Series (Tanner '88, won)
- 1993: Outstanding Directing in a Variety or Music Program (Great Performances – Black and Blue, nominated)
- 1971: Best Director (MASH, nominated)
- 1976: Best Director (Nashville, nominated)
- 1993: Best Director (The Player, nominated)
- 1994: Best Screenplay (Short Cuts, nominated)
- 2002: Best Director (Gosford Park, won)
- 1994: Best Director (Short Cuts, won)
- 1994: Best Screenplay (Short Cuts, won)
- 1995: Best Feature (Mrs. Parker and the Vicious Circle, nominated)
- 2000: Best Feature (Cookie's Fortune, nominated)
- 2007: Best Director (A Prairie Home Companion, nominated)
- 1993: Golden Lion (Short Cuts, won)
- 1996: Career Golden Lion (won)
- 2000: Golden Lion (Dr T and the Women, nominated)
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"Sometimes I feel like Little Eva, running across the ice .. with the dogs yapping at my ass. Maybe the reason I'm doing all this is so I can get a lot done before they catch up with me." – 1976
See also 
- Robert Altman Bibliography (via UC Berkeley)
- Rafal Syska, Keep the Distance. Film World of Robert Altman, Rabid, Cracow 2008. ISBN 978-83-60236-36-9
Additional resources 
- The director's commentary on the McCabe & Mrs. Miller DVD, while focusing on that film, also to some degree covers Altman's general methodology as a director.
- Judith M. Kass. Robert Altman: American Innovator early (1978) assessment of the director's work and his interest in gambling. Part of Leonard Maltin's Popular Library filmmaker series.
- The English band Maxïmo Park have a song named "Robert Altman", a b-side to their single "Our Velocity"
- The Criterion Collection has released several of Altman's films on DVD (Short Cuts, 3 Women, Tanner '88, Secret Honor) which include audio commentary and video interviews with him that shed light on his directing style.
- Charles Warren, "Cavell, Altman and Cassavetes" in the Stanley Cavell special issue, Jeffey Crouse (ed.), Film International, Issue 22, Vol. 4, No. 4, 2006, pp. 14–20.
- Rick Armstrong, "Robert Altman: Critical Essays" Actors, historians, film scholars, and cultural theorists reflect on Altman and his five-decade career...(McFarland, February 18, 2011)
- Mitchell Zuckoff, Robert Altman: The Oral Biography. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2009. ISBN 978-0-307-26768-9
- Description and details on the Short Cuts Soundtrack for more in-depth information about this title.
- Lemons, Stephen. "Robert Altman". Salon.com. p. 2. Retrieved November 22, 2006.
- The Daily Telegraph (November 22, 2006). "Robert Altman, 81, Mercurial Director of Masterworks and Flops". The New York Sun. Retrieved November 22, 2006.
- "The Religious Affiliation of Robert Altman". Adherents.com. July 28, 2005. Retrieved November 22, 2006.
- "Interview: Robert Altman", The Guardian
- Spotlight: Catholics at the Movies http://www.catholichistory.net/Spotlights/SpotlightMovies.htm
- Butler, Robert W. (March 5, 2006). "Finally, An Attitude Adjustment: Hollywood's Establishment Now Embraces Rebel Director Altman". The Kansas City Star. p. 5.
- "Famous B-24/PB4Y Crew Members". B-24 Best Web. 2011. Retrieved July 25, 2011.
- USA Today (March 14, 2012)
- Forbes (March 13, 2012)
- Cook (2000), p. 97.
- "Book of Members, 1780–2010: Chapter A". American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Retrieved April 15, 2011.
- "Robert Altman Has A Hard Body". Empire.
- "Robert Altman". Find A Grave. Retrieved September 29, 2012.
- "Director Robert Altman dies at 81 – More news and other features – MSNBC.com". MSNBC. November 22, 2006. Retrieved September 17, 2011.
- http://www.cnn.com/2006/SHOWBIZ/Movies/11/21/obit.altman.ap/index.html. Missing or empty
- Smith, Ian Haydn, ed. (2008). International Film Guide: The Definitive Annual Review of World Cinema. London: Wallflower Press. p. 316. ISBN 978-1-905674-61-9.
- KC native Altman's papers heading for Michigan, not KC – Kansascity.com – April 21, 2009[dead link]
- Peter Biskind, Easy Riders, Raging Bulls, New York: Touchstone Books, 1998
- Suzie Mackenzie (May 1, 2004). "Still up to mischief (Suzie Mackenzie interviewing Altman)". The Guardian. Retrieved 1 May 2013. "Still, it's worth noting that by the age of 20 this whistle- blower had resisted two of the most powerful institutions - church and army, both. He is an atheist, "And I have been against all of these wars ever since.""
- "20 Questions, 2 Choices", The Birmingham News, June 3, 2005
- "Interview: Robert Altman – Interviews – guardian.co.uk Film". London.[dead link]
- "NORML Advisory Board – NORML". Norml.org. Retrieved September 17, 2011.
- "Berlinale 1976: Prize Winners". berlinale.de. Retrieved July 16, 2010.
- "Berlinale: 1999 Programme". berlinale.de. Retrieved January 29, 2012.
- Rainer, Peter (March 5, 2006). "Mr. Altman's unflinching eye". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved August 27, 2010.
- Cook, David A. (2000). Lost Illusions: American Cinema in the Shadow of Watergate and Vietnam, 1970–1979 (Berkeley, Los Angeles, and London: University of California Press). ISBN 0-520-23265-8
||This article's use of external links may not follow Wikipedia's policies or guidelines. (July 2011)|
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Robert Altman|
- Robert Altman at the Internet Movie Database
- Robert Altman at the Internet Broadway Database
- Robert Altman at the Internet Off-Broadway Database
- Robert Altman at the Criterion Collection
- Listen to Robert Altman discussing his career – a British Library recording.
- Robert Altman bibliography via UC Berkeley Media Resources Center
- Still up to mischief – The Guardian, May 1, 2004
- Reverse Shot interview
- The Onion A.V. Club's 2004 interview
- The Onion A.V. Club's 2000 interview
- Ebert's Altman Home Companion
- Gerald Peary interview
- Literature on Robert Altman
- "Altman: Would you go to a movie that was hailed as a masterpiece?" by Roger Ebert
- Bomb magazine interview
- Artist of the Month: Robert Altman at Hyena Productions
- Find A Grave