Casting By

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Casting By
Black and white picture of Marion Dougherty and George Roy Hill with the title Casting By and credits underneath
Theatrical release poster
Directed byTom Donahue
Produced byKate Lacey
Tom Donahue
Joanna Colbert
Ilan Arboleda
StarringMarion Dougherty
Lynn Stalmaster
Woody Allen
Jeff Bridges
Glenn Close
Robert De Niro
Richard Dreyfuss
Robert Duvall
Clint Eastwood
Danny Glover
Diane Lane
Bette Midler
Al Pacino
Robert Redford
Martin Scorsese
John Travolta
Jon Voight
Music byLeigh Roberts
CinematographyPeter Bolte
Edited byJill Schweitzer
Distributed bySubmarine Deluxe
Release date
  • September 10, 2012 (2012-09-10) (TIFF)
  • August 5, 2013 (2013-08-05) (HBO)
  • November 1, 2013 (2013-11-01) (United States)
Running time
89 minutes
CountryUnited States

Casting By is a 2012 American documentary film directed by Tom Donahue. It combines over 230 interviews, extensive archival footage, animated stills and documents to tell the untold tale of the Hollywood casting director, Marion Dougherty. Dougherty passed away before the film's release, it is dedicated to her memory [1].

The film had its international premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival and its US premiere at the New York Film Festival in 2012. It was acquired by HBO Documentary Films in Toronto and had its US Broadcast premiere as part of the HBO Documentary Summer Series on August 5, 2013. In September 2013, the US theatrical rights were acquired by Submarine Deluxe.[2][3]


The film is a celebration of the casting profession, highlighting its previously unsung role in film history while also serving as an elegy to the lost era of the New Hollywood. It focuses on casting pioneer Marion Dougherty, an iconoclast whose exquisite taste, tenacity and gut instincts brought a new kind of actor to the screen that would mark the end of the old studio system and help to usher in this revolutionary new period. The film draws a line through the last half century to show us the profession’s evolution from studio system type-casting to the rise of large ensemble films populated with unique and diverse casts.

In their July 25, 2013 cover story on the film ("Rise of the Casting Directors"), Backstage wrote, "the film features what is arguably the greatest assemblage of talking-head star power in any documentary ever made."[4]

The interviewees include numerous Hollywood legends: Woody Allen, Ed Asner, Jeanine Basinger, Ned Beatty, Tony Bill, Peter Bogdanovich, Stephen Bowie, Jeff Bridges, Glenn Close, Ronny Cox, Robert De Niro, Richard Donner, Richard Dreyfuss, Robert Duvall, Clint Eastwood, Mel Gibson, Danny Glover, Taylor Hackford, Paul Haggis, Jerome Hellman, Buck Henry, Arthur Hiller, Norman Jewison, Diane Lane, Ed Lauter, Norman Lear, John Lithgow, Gary Marsh, Paul Mazursky, Bette Midler, Al Pacino, David Picker, Robert Redford, James Rosin, John Sayles, Jerry Schatzberg, Martin Scorsese, Terry Semel, Ralph Senensky, James Sheldon, Cybill Shepherd, Susan Smith, Oliver Stone, Mel Stuart, John Travolta, Jon Voight, Paula Weinstein, Burt Young, Deborah Aquila.


Casting By was named one of the top 5 documentaries in December 2013 by the National Board of Review of America in November 2013.[5] As the society celebrated the Academy’s decision to create a casting directors branch for awards, Casting By received an Artios Award and a standing ovation for its pivotal role in spurring the Academy’s decision on the night of the 29th Annual Artios Awards.[6]

"Then, CSA president Richard Hicks took the stage and recapped "a great year" for casting directors, including the achievement of "branch status" at the Academy, which he said was "a sign that perceptions are beginning to change -- we thank you, Academy." He then acknowledged Casting By, calling it "a beautiful gift" to the memory of its principal subject, the late Marion Dougherty, and all members of the profession. "If we're lucky," he continued, "it might just get nominated for an Oscar." [7]

The film won the Audience award for Best Documentary at the 2013 Sebastopol Documentary Film Festival. In February 2014, the National Alliance for Women in Media recognized Casting By as an outstanding program for its role in supporting women’s achievements in all facets of media and entertainment as the documentary earned a Gracie Award.[8] In July 2014, Casting By was nominated for Outstanding Arts and Culture Programming for the 35th Documentary Emmy Awards.[9]

In November 2016, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ Board of Governors awarded Lynn Stalmaster with an Academy Honorary Award for casting. He became the first person to receive an Oscar for casting.[10]

Woody Allen's Open Letter[edit]

Woody Allen wrote a rare, open letter to The Hollywood Reporter magazine a week after Casting By opening in New York on Nov. 1, 2012, and recognized his own casting director, Juliet Taylor (who is one of Marion Dougherty’s protégées), for her tenacity and insight in her casting work for his films.[11]

Home media[edit]

Casting By was released on DVD/Blu Ray through First Run Features on September 16, 2014.[12]


  1. ^ "Marion Dougherty, Legendary Casting Director, Dies at 88". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2018-08-10.
  2. ^ "Toronto Deals: HBO Acquires 'Casting By,' Documentary of Marion Dougherty, Lynn Stalmaster". The Wrap. Retrieved 13 September 2012.
  3. ^ "Submarine Deluxe Takes U.S. Theatrical Rights to 'Casting By' Doc". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 28 September 2013.
  4. ^ "'Casting By' Aims to Give Casting Directors Credit Where Due". Back Stage. Retrieved 25 July 2013.
  5. ^ "'National Board of Review Announces 2013 Award Winners". National Board of Review. Retrieved 5 August 2013.
  6. ^ "Casting Directors Honor 'Argo,' 'Homeland' and 'Casting By' at Artios Awards".
  7. ^ "'Her' Named Best Film by National Board of Review".
  8. ^ "2014 Gracie Award Winners". Archived from the original on 2015-02-26.
  9. ^ "Nominees for the 35th Annual News & Documentary Emmy Awards Announced by the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences".
  10. ^ Retrieved 20 July 2017. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  11. ^ "Woody Allen Pens Rare Open Letter to Hollywood (Guest Column)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved August 5, 2014.
  12. ^ "Coming soon on Blu-ray, DVD and digital". Cinephiled. Retrieved August 5, 2014.

External links[edit]