Field at Deauville American Film Festival press conference September 5, 2006.
|Born||William Todd Field
February 24, 1964
Pomona, California, U.S.
|Spouse(s)||Serena Rathbun (1986 – )|
Field was born in Pomona, California, where his family ran a poultry farm. When Field turned two, his family moved to Portland, Oregon, where his father went to work as a salesman, and his mother became a school librarian. As a child in Portland, Field was a batboy for the Portland Mavericks, a single A independent minor league baseball club owned by Hollywood actor Bing Russell. Kurt Russell, Bing's son and later an acclaimed Hollywood actor in his own right, also played for the Portland Mavericks during this time. Field and Maverick Pitching Coach Rob Nelson created the first batch of Big League Chew in the Field family kitchen. In 1980 Nelson and former New York Yankees all-star Jim Bouton sold the idea to the Wrigley Company. Since that time over 600 million pouches have been sold worldwide.   At an early age Field became interested in performing sleight-of-hand and later music. A budding jazz musician, at the age of sixteen years Field became a member of the Big Band at Mount Hood Community College in Gresham, Oregon. Headed by Larry McVey, the band had become a proving-ground and regular stop for Stan Kenton and Mel Tormé when they were looking for new players. It was here Field played trombone along with his friend, trumpeter and future Grammy Award Winner, Chris Botti. During this same time Field also worked as a non-union projectionist at a second-run movie theater. He graduated with his class from Centennial High School on Portland's east side and briefly attended Southern Oregon State College (now Southern Oregon University) in Ashland on a music scholarship, but left after his freshman year favoring a move to New York to study acting. Once there, he began performing with the Ark Theatre Company as both an actor and musician. Field received his Master of Fine Arts from the AFI Conservatory.
One of the film industry's more multifaceted members, having worked in varying capacities as an actor, director, producer, composer, and screenwriter, Field began making motion pictures in 1985 when he was cast by Woody Allen in Radio Days. He went on to work with some of America's greatest film makers including Stanley Kubrick, Victor Nuñez, and Carl Franklin. It was Franklin and Nunez (both AFI alumni) who encouraged Field to enroll as a Directing Fellow at the AFI, which he did in the fall of 1992. Since that time he has received the Franklin J. Schaffner Fellow Award from the AFI, the Satyajit Ray Award from the British Film Institute, a Jury Prize from the Sundance Film Festival, and his short films have been exhibited at various venues overseas and domestically at the Museum of Modern Art. To date, unadjusted box office receipts for the films in which Field has participated exceed a billion dollars worldwide.
In the Bedroom
Field became one of Hollywood's hottest new writer/directors with the release of In the Bedroom, a film based on the short story Killings by author Andre Dubus. (Kubrick and Dubus were among Field's mentors; both died right before the production of In the Bedroom.) In the Bedroom was nominated for five Academy Awards including Best Picture, Best Actor (Tom Wilkinson, his first nomination), Best Actress (Sissy Spacek, her sixth nomination), Supporting Actress (Marisa Tomei, her second nomination), and Best Screenplay (Adapted). The film was shot in Rockland, Maine, a New England town in which Field resides—the house where he, his wife (Serena Rathbun), and their four children live was even used as the setting for one sequence. Rathbun and Sissy Spacek did a portion of the set designing and Field handled the camera himself on many of the shots. The result, critics said, was stunning: David Ansen of Newsweek wrote,
"Todd Field exhibits a mastery of his craft many filmmakers never acquire in a lifetime. With one film he’s guaranteed his future as a director. He has the magnificent obsession of the natural-born filmmaker.."
Anthony Quinn of The Independent also praised the director:
"Field has pulled off something here I thought no American filmmaker would ever manage again: he makes violence feel genuinely shocking."
For his work on In the Bedroom, Field was named Director of the Year by the National Board of Review, and his script was awarded Best Original Screenplay. The film went on to win Best Picture of the Year by the Los Angeles Film Critics Association, and the New York Film Critics Circle awarded Best First Film to Field. In the Bedroom received six American Film Institute Awards including Best Picture, Director, and Screenplay, three Golden Globe nominations, and five Academy Award nominations including Best Picture, Actor, Actress, Supporting Actress, and two individually for Field both as Screenwriter and Producer. The American Film Institute honored Field with the Franklin Schaffner Alumni Medal. With the exception of the AFI Life Achievement Award, the Schaffner Award is the highest honor an individual can achieve.
Field followed In the Bedroom with Little Children, which was nominated for three Academy Awards including two for his actors: Kate Winslet (her fifth nomination, and with it a record for the youngest actor to be nominated for five Academy Awards) and Jackie Earle Haley (his first nomination, and first leading role in over fifteen years). After having written, directed and produced just two feature films, Field had garnered five Academy Award nominations for his actors, and three for himself, personally. The film, based on the novel of the same name by Tom Perrotta, premiered at the 2006 New York Film Festival. In his end-of-year roundup "Best of 2006", A.O. Scott of The New York Times wrote: "The first time you see Todd Field's adaptation of Tom Perrotta's novel, you may remark on the director's impressive control over the unruly source material and the emotional agility of the cast. Kate Winslet in particular. The second time, the film's lurid, crazy side is more apparent, and the intensity of the supporting performances — Noah Emmerich, Jackie Earle Haley, Phyllis Somerville — creep into the foreground. This movie, Mr. Field's second feature... is a complicated blend of gothic, melodrama and sexual comedy, unerringly attuned to the varieties of human failure."
According to the Los Angeles Times, Field is currently in the process of adapting a film version of Cormac McCarthy's novel Blood Meridian. During the process, Field took over the directing position of Ridley Scott, who was originally scheduled to direct. Scott himself stated that the film would be a tricky film and should be left as a novel. Although director James Franco had taken interest in adapting the novel, there has been no recent information regarding the project.
According to the Los Angeles Times, Field is currently in the process of preparing his next film, an adaptation of the Boston Teran novel The Creed of Violence. Actor Leonardo DiCaprio is in talks to play the lead role of Rawbone.
At the 2014 Sundance Film Festival Field appeared in the documentary film The Battered Bastards of Baseball, recollecting his early life as a batboy for the Portland Mavericks, a unique, unaffiliated independent Minor League Baseball team. According to the Hollywood Reporter, Field is set to write & direct a feature film based on the story.
|2001||In the Bedroom||
|Year||Film||Duties||Notes and Awards|
|1992||The Dog||Co-Director with Alex Vlacos||Short experimental film|
|Too Romantic||Writer/Director||AFI First Year Cycle Project|
|1993||When I Was a Boy||Co-Director with Alex Vlacos & Matthew Modine||Premiered at Sundance Film Festival in front of Victor Nuñez's Grand Jury Prize winning Ruby in Paradise in which Field also starred. Exhibited at MoMA as part of the New Directors/New Films Series|
|The Tree||Writer/Director||AFI First Year Cycle Project|
|Delivering||Writer/Director||AFI First Year Cycle Project|
|1995||Nonnie & Alex||Director||AFI Second Year Thesis Project
Winner Sundance Film Festival Special Jury Award, Winner College Emmy Best Film Award, Winner Aspen Short Fest Grand Prize
- "Todd Field Biography -Movies@Piczo".
- ""The Battered Bastards of Baseball" impresses Sundance". Retrieved July 14, 2014.
- "Big League Chew: An Oral History".
- "Sundance 2014: Todd Field looks back on the 'Battered Bastards of Baseball'".
- "Todd Field Biography - Yahoo! Movies".
- Levy, Shawn. You couldn't write a better script. The Oregonian, March twenty-third, 2002.
- "Todd Field Biography". The New York Times. December 3, 2009.
- "Todd Field Worldwide Box Office Totals: In the Bedroom, Little Children, Twister, Radio Days, The Haunting, Gross Anatomy, Eyes Wide Shut, Walking & Talking, Ruby in Paradise, Sleep with Me, The Allnighter, Fat Man & Little Boy, Queens Logic, Frank & Jesse, Stranger than Fiction. Box Office Mojo". March 6, 2009.
- Gale, Thomas (December 16, 2007). "Todd Field Biography". Contemporary Authors.
- Ansen, David (December 3, 2001). "Their House Torn Asunder". Newsweek.
- Ansen, David. (January 21, 2002). "Break On Through To The Oscar Side.". Newsweek.
- Quinn, Anthony (25 January 2002). "The Big Picture: In the Bedroom". The Independent.
- Scott, A.O. "Best of 2006: Here's to the Ambitious and the Altmans." The New York Times, December 24, 2006.
- Medina, Jeremy (August 28, 2008). "Cormac McCarthy's Blood Meridian film changes directors". Los Angeles Times.
- "Todd Field still working hard on Blood Meridian". TalkingFilms. January 14, 2010. Retrieved April 3, 2010.
- Kevin P. Sullivan (February 1, 2012). "Ridley Scott In Talks For Cormac McCarthy's 'Counselor'". MTV Movies Blog. MTV. Retrieved 15 February 2012.
- Steven, Zeitchik (July 29, 2011). "A Western With Leonardo DiCaprio?". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2011-08-05.
- Jeff, Labrecque (January 22, 2014). "Sundance 2014: Todd Field looks back on the 'Battered Bastards of Baseball'". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 2014-03-14.
- Tatiana, Siegel * Borys, Kit (January 29, 2014). "Sundance Deal Wrap". Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2014-03-14.
- Thomas, Kevin (July 30, 1999). "Movie Review: Broken Vessels". Los Angeles Times.
- Independent Spirit Award for Best Supporting Male
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Todd Field.|
- Todd Field at the Internet Movie Database
- Todd Field at the TCM Movie Database
- Todd Field at AllMovie
- Delicately Dissecting the Quiet Life – 18 November 2001, The New York Times
- Why My Half-Brother Tried to Kill Me – 12 January 2002, The Guardian
- 'In the Bedroom' Without Frills – 9 August 2002, The New York Times
- The Best DVD's of 2002 – 3 January 2003, The New York Times
- Acting all grown up in a land of `Children’ – 21 January 2007, Los Angeles Times
- Field on Bergman – 1 August 2007, Los Angeles Times
- Academic Papers
- Chicago Public Radio's Film Spotting Interview (mp3) 28 October 2006
- Elvis Mitchell's The Treatment KCRW 11 October 2006
- Renee Montagne NPR Morning Edition - DVD Commentaries, 26 February 2003
- Scott Horsley NPR Morning Edition - DVD Sales Challenge Video-Rental Business, 25 February 2003
- Warren Olney Interview KCRW 15 March 2002