Franklin J. Schaffner
Franklin J. Schaffner
Franklin James Schaffner
May 30, 1920
|Died||July 2, 1989 (aged 69)|
Santa Monica, California, U.S.
|Title||President of the Directors Guild of America, 1987–89|
|Spouse(s)||Helen Jean Gilchrist (1948–89) (died 2007)|
|Awards||Academy Award for Best Director; 1971 Patton|
Primetime Emmy Award for Best Direction; 1955 Studio One, 1955 Ford Star Jubilee, 1962 The Defenders
|Service/|| United States Navy|
Office of Strategic Services
Franklin James Schaffner (May 30, 1920 – July 2, 1989) was an American film, television, and stage director. He won an Academy Award for Best Director for Patton (1970), and is known for the films Planet of the Apes (1968), Nicholas and Alexandra (1971), Papillon (1973), and The Boys from Brazil (1978). He served as president of the Directors Guild of America between 1987 and 1989.
The Schaffners returned to the United States and settled in Lancaster, Pennsylvania when Franklin Schaffner was 5 years old. Franklin Schaffner attended J.P. McCaskey High School, where he appeared as Mr. Darcy in the school's production of Pride and Prejudice. In 1938, he graduated as valedictorian of McCaskey High School's first graduating class.
Schaffner graduated from Franklin & Marshall College (F&M) in Lancaster. As a student, Schaffner was active in the drama program at F&M's Green Room Theatre, where he appeared in eleven plays and served as president of the Green Room Club. He then studied law at Columbia University in New York City, but his education was interrupted by service with the United States Navy in World War II during which he served with American amphibious forces in Europe and North Africa. In the latter stages of the war, he was sent to the Pacific Far East to serve with the United States Office for Strategic Services.
Schaffner returned to the United States after the war. He worked for a world peace organization then as an assistant director for the documentary film series The March of Time. He became a director in the news and public affairs department of CBS television where his jobs including covering sports, beauty pageants and public-service programs.
In the realm of network television, Schaffner also received widespread critical acclaim in 1962 for his groundbreaking collaboration with the First Lady of the United States Jacqueline Kennedy and CBS television's Musical Director Alfredo Antonini in the production of A Tour of the White House with Mrs. John F. Kennedy, a television special broadcast to over 80 million viewers worldwide.
Schaffner's contributions in this production earned him a nomination in 1963 by the Director's Guild of America USA, for its award in the category of Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Television.
In January 1960 Schaffner signed a multi picture deal with Columbia Pictures.
In May 1961 he signed to make A Summer Place at 20th Century Fox with Fabian and Dolores Hart. The film was not made. Schaffner directed The Good Years (1962) for TV with Henry Fonda and Lucille Ball. Other TV work included The Great American Robbery.
Instead Schaffner's first motion picture was The Stripper (1963), made at Fox from a play by William Inge, starring Richard Beymer and Joanne Woodward. The film was well-received critically, but not a commercial success.
Schaffner later made The Best Man (1964) based on a play by Gore Vidal and The War Lord (1965), based on a play by Leslie Stevens, with Charlton Heston. In a 1966 interview he said "as you mature you learn that the story is the most important thing." He announced various films for Columbia - The Day Lincoln Was Shot, The Whistle Blows for Victory and The Green Beret - but they were not made.
Schaffner had a huge critical and commercial hit in Planet of the Apes (1968) starring Heston at 20th Century Fox.
In December 1968 Schaffner signed a non-exclusive three-picture deal with Columbia.
His next film was for 20th Century Fox, however: Patton (1970), a biopic of General Patton starring George C. Scott. It was a major success for which Schaffner won the Academy Award for Best Director and the Directors Guild of America Award for Best Director.
He made Nicholas and Alexandra (1971) for producer Sam Spiegel. It was an expensive box-office failure. Schaffner followed it with Papillon (1973) a $14 million epic with Steve McQueen and Dustin Hoffman that was a considerable financial success. In 1971 he said his films "are almost always about people who are out of their time and place."
Schaffner intended to follow Papillon with Dynasty of Western Outlaws, about outlaws over the years in Missouri from a script by John Gay, and an adaptation of The French Lieutenant's Woman. He ended up making neither: Dynasty was never made, and French Lieutenant was made a decade later by another director.
Schaffner reunited with George C. Scott in Islands in the Stream (1977), based on the novel by Ernest Hemingway. He then did The Boys from Brazil (1978) based on a novel by Ira Levin with Gregory Peck.
His later films included Sphinx (1981), a $10 million thriller about Egypt based on novel by Robin Cook and produced by Stanley O'Toole, who had made Boys from Brazil with Schaffner. It was a commercial failure as was Yes, Giorgio (1982), a musical comedy starring Luciano Pavarotti.
Schaffner was president of the Directors Guild of America from 1987 until his death in 1989.
Jerry Goldsmith composed the music for seven of his films: The Stripper, Planet of the Apes, Patton, Papillon, Islands in the Stream, The Boys from Brazil and Lionheart. Four of them were nominated for the Academy Award for Best Original Score.
Schaffner twice worked with actors Charlton Heston and Maurice Evans (The War Lord; Planet of the Apes), George C. Scott (Patton; Islands in the Stream) and Laurence Olivier (Nicholas and Alexandra; The Boys from Brazil).
Schaffner married Helen Jean Gilchrist in 1948. The couple had two children, Jennie and Kate. She died in 2007.
Schaffner died on July 2, 1989 at the age of 69. He was released 10 days before his death from a hospital where he was being treated for lung cancer.
Screenwriter William Goldman identified Schaffner in 1981 as being one of the three best directors (then living) at handling "scope" (a gift for screen epics) in films. The other two were David Lean and Richard Attenborough.
In 1991, Schaffner's widow, Jean Schaffner, established the Franklin J. Schaffner Alumni Medal (colloquially known as the Franklin J. Schaffner Award), which is awarded by the American Film Institute at its annual ceremony to an alumnus of either the AFI Conservatory or the AFI Conservatory Directing Workshop for Women who best embodies the qualities of the late director: talent, taste, dedication and commitment to quality filmmaking. Notable recipients include David Lynch, Amy Heckerling, Terence Malick, Darren Aronofsky, Patty Jenkins and Paul Schrader, among others.
|Year||Title||Academy Awards||Golden Globe Awards||BAFTA Awards||Notes|
|1952||The Wings of the Dove|
|1964||The Best Man||1||2|
|1965||The War Lord|
|1967||The Double Man|
|1968||Planet of the Apes||2||1|
|1971||Nicholas and Alexandra||6||2||3||3|
|1976||Islands in the Stream||1|
|1978||The Boys from Brazil||3||1|
|1981||Sphinx||Also executive producer|
|Year||Title||Emmy Awards||Golden Globe Awards||Notes|
|1948-51||The Ford Theatre Hour||22 episodes|
|1949-56||Studio One||12||5||110 episodes|
|1951||Tales of Tomorrow||5 episodes|
|1953-59||Person to Person||6||248 episodes|
|1955||The Best of Broadway||1||1 episode|
|1955-56||Ford Star Jubilee||4||3||2 episodes|
|1956-57||The Kaiser Aluminum Hour||1||6 episodes|
|1957||Producers' Showcase||13||7||1 episode|
|1957-60||Playhouse 90||34||13||1||19 episodes|
|1961||Cry Vengeance!||Television film|
|1961-62||The Defenders||8||14||2||1||6 episodes|
|1962||The Good Years||Television film|
|A Tour of the White House with Mrs. John F. Kennedy||Documentary special|
|1962-64||The DuPont Show of the Week||8||10 episodes|
|1964||Ambassador at Large||Television film|
|1966||One-Eyed Jacks Are Wild|
|1967||ABC Stage 67||4||2||1 episode|
Awards and nominations
- "Franklin J. Schaffner". Filmreference.com.
- Kim, Erwin (1985). Franklin J. Schaffner. Scarecrow Press. ISBN 9780810817999.
- Reinert, Jed (2020-05-28). "From McCaskey to F&M; to Hollywood: The saga of Oscar-winning director Franklin Schaffner". LNP. Archived from the original on 2020-07-03. Retrieved 2020-07-03.
- Wright, Mary Ellen (2020-05-30). "From McCaskey to F&M; to Hollywood: The saga of Oscar-winning director Franklin Schaffner". LNP. Archived from the original on 2020-06-18. Retrieved 2020-07-03.
- Oscar-Winning Film Director Franklin J. Schaffner Dies: [FINAL Edition] The Washington Post 4 July 1989: b06.
- Franklin J. Schaffner Dies at 69; An Oscar-Winning Film Director: [Obituary] Morgan, Thomas. New York Times3 July 1989: 1.11.
- A MODERN TOWN-CRIER: FORD THEATRE'S FIRST SHOW New York Times 3 Sep 1950: 49.
- SHOW ILLUSTRATES DRAMA IN THE NEWS: 'Hear It Now,' Tape-Recorded by Murrow and Friendly, Makes Debut on C.B.S. Radio "Alice in Wonderland" on TV New York Times 16 Dec 1950: 15.
- TREASURE ISLAND': Video Version of Stevenson's Classic Is Presented by 'Studio One' By JACK GOULD. New York Times 11 May 1952: X11.
- Television in Review: Reginald Rose Play on 'Studio One' Protests Credo of Conformity By JACK GOULD. New York Times 19 Mar 1954: 30.
- The Caine Mutiny Court Martial': Cameras Add Power to Play by Wouk Nolan Repeats Study of Captain Queeg, By JACK GOULD. New York Times ]21 Nov 1955: 55.
- MINER WILL LEAVE TV DRAMA SERIES: Producer Resigns 'Kaiser Hour' Post--Ferrer to Be 'Festival of Music' Host By VAL ADAMS. New York Times 26 Nov 1956: 55.
- FOUR WILL CO-STAR ON 'PLAYHOUSE 90': Randall, Misses Neal, Foch and Dunnock in 'Playroom' --Plans for Nanette Fabray, Special to The New York Times. 21 Sep 1957: 39
- THE TV SCENE---: Another Writer Turns to Series, Smith, Cecil. Los Angeles Times 24 Feb 1960: A10.
- Theatre: Political Issues: 'Advise and Consent' Opens at the Cort By HOWARD TAUBMAN. New York Times ]18 Nov 1960: 25.
- "A Tour of the White House (TV Movie 1962)". IMDb.
- "A Tour of the White House - IMDb" – via www.imdb.com.
- MITCHUM GETS ROLE IN 'GRASS IS GREENER', New York Times 14 Jan 1960: 31.
- TV Ace With 20th; Vallee Goes Legit: Movies for Children Listed; Debbie May Play Ruth Roland Scheuer, Philip K. Los Angeles Times 12 May 1961: A11.
- TV: 'The Good Years': Lucille Ball, Henry Fonda and Mort Sahl Star in Presentation on Channel 2 By JACK GOULD. New York Times 13 Jan 1962: 47.
- THE GREAT ROBBERY Page, Don. Los Angeles Times 29 Apr 1962: B2.
- THE TV SCENE: 'Show of Week' Modem 'Dybbuk' Smith, Cecil. Los Angeles Times 17 May 1963: C12.
- Schaffner: TV to Big Screen Thomas, Kevin. Los Angeles Times 17 Mar 1966: d17.
- Schaffner Whistles for Sean Connery: Readers on Flint vs. Bond; Movie Music Goes on Block Scheuer, Philip K. Los Angeles Times 11 Feb 1965: D11.
- Balancing Act Pays Off for 'Patton' Director: Incomplete Source Thomas, Kevin. Los Angeles Times 7 May 1970: h1.
- MOVIE CALL SHEET: Pat Suzuki Signs for Role Martin, Betty. Los Angeles Times 20 Dec 1968: f22.
- Schaffner Has His Fingers Crossed: Schaffner's Fingers Crossed HOFFERKAMP, JACK. Los Angeles Times 4 Jan 1974: d16.
- McQueen -- The Man Who Got Away By A.H. WEILER. New York Times 26 Dec 1971: D15.
- MOVIE CALL SHEET: The Reteaming of Scott and Schaffner Murphy, Mary. Los Angeles Times 20 Mar 1975: i16.
- FILM MAKING IN PHARAOH LAND: TUT, TUT: FILM MAKING IN PHARAOH LAND Hall, William. Los Angeles Times (11 May 1980: u6.
- Jerry Goldsmith awards & nominations IMDb.com Retrieved 2011-05-31.
- Pulver, Andrew (24 June 2005). "Monkey business". The Guardian.
- Salvato, Larry (2 December 2014). "16 Overlooked Movies From The 1970s That Are Worth Watching". Retrieved 13 May 2015.
- Vermilye, Jerry (1992). The Complete Films of Laurence Olivier. Citadel Press. ISBN 9780806513027.
- "Franklin Schaffner (1920-1989) - Find A Grave..." www.findagrave.com.
- "Franklin J. Schaffner Dies at 69; An Oscar-Winning Film Director". The New York Times.
- John Bradey, "The craft of the screenwriter", 1981. Page 168
- "Franklin J. Schaffner Award | AFI CONSERVATORY". Retrieved 2021-03-30.
- "Duncan Henderson and Arthur Lewis to be Honored For Guild Service and Career Achievement at the 72nd Annual DGA Awards -". www.dga.org. Retrieved 2021-03-30.
- "Franklin J. Schaffner". Academy Film Archive.