William Wyler

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William Wyler
William Wyler portrait.jpg
c. 1945
Born Willy Wyler
(1902-07-01)July 1, 1902
Mülhausen, Alsace-Lorraine, German Empire (present-day Mulhouse, Haut-Rhin, France)
Died July 27, 1981(1981-07-27) (aged 79)
Beverly Hills, California, U.S.
Cause of death Heart attack
Resting place Forest Lawn Memorial Park (Glendale)
Nationality American, Swiss
Occupation Film director, producer
Years active 1925–1970
Spouse(s) Margaret Sullavan (1934–1936; divorced)
Margaret Tallichet (1938–1981; his death; 5 children)

William Wyler, born as Willy Wyler (July 1, 1902 – July 27, 1981) was a French-born American film director, producer and screenwriter.[1]:37 Notable works included Ben-Hur (1959), The Best Years of Our Lives (1946), and Mrs. Miniver (1942), all of which won Academy Awards for Best Director, as well as Best Picture in their respective years, making him the only director of three Best Picture winners. Wyler received his first Oscar nomination for directing Dodsworth in 1936, starring Walter Huston, Ruth Chatterton and Mary Astor, "sparking a 20-year run of almost unbroken greatness."[2]:24

Film historian Ian Freer calls Wyler a "bona fide perfectionist", whose penchant for retakes and an attempt to hone every last nuance, "became the stuff of legend."[2]:57 His ability to direct a string of classic literary adaptations into huge box-office and critical successes made him one of "Hollywood's most bankable moviemakers" during the 1930s and 1940s and into the 60's. Other popular Wyler films include: Hell's Heroes (1930), Dodsworth (1936), Jezebel (1938), Wuthering Heights (1939), The Westerner (1940), The Letter (1940), The Heiress (1949), Roman Holiday (1953), Friendly Persuasion (1956), The Big Country (1958), The Children's Hour (1961), How to Steal a Million (1966), and Funny Girl (1968).

Early life[edit]

Wyler was born[3] to a Jewish family[4]:1220 in Mulhouse, Alsace (then part of the German Empire).[5]:3 His Swiss father, Leopold, started as a traveling salesman which he later turned into a thriving haberdashery business in Mulhouse. His mother, Melanie (née Auerbach;[6] died February 13, 1955, Los Angeles, aged 77), was German, and a cousin of Carl Laemmle, founder of Universal Pictures. During Wyler's childhood, he attended a number of schools and developed a reputation as "something of a hellraiser", being expelled more than once for misbehavior.[4]:1222 His mother often took him and his older brother Robert to concerts, opera, and the theatre, as well as the early cinema. Sometimes at home his family and their friends would stage amateur theatricals for personal enjoyment.[4]:1223

Wyler was supposed to take over the family business. After World War I, he spent a dismal year working in Paris at 100.000 Chemises selling shirts and ties. He was so poor that he often spent his time wandering around the Pigalle district. After realizing that Willy was not interested in the haberdashery business, his mother contacted her distant cousin about opportunities for him. Laemmle was in the habit of coming to Europe each year, searching for promising young men who would work in America. In 1921, Wyler, while traveling as a Swiss citizen (his father's status automatically conferred Swiss citizenship to his sons), met Laemmle who hired him to work at Universal Studios in New York. As Wyler said: "America seemed as far away as the moon." Booked onto a ship to New York with Laemmle upon his return voyage, he met a young Czech man, Paul Kohner (later the famous independent agent), aboard the same ship. Their enjoyment of the first class trip was short-lived as they found they had to pay back the cost of the passage out of their $25 weekly income as messengers to Universal Pictures. After working in New York for several years, and even serving in the New York Army National Guard for a year, Wyler decided that he wanted to go to Hollywood to become a director.[1]:37

Directing career[edit]


Around 1923, Wyler arrived in Los Angeles and began work on the Universal Studios lot in the swing gang, cleaning the stages and moving the sets. His break came when he was hired as a second assistant editor. His work ethic was uneven with Irving Thalberg nicknaming him "Worthless Willy." After some ups and downs (including getting fired), he focused on becoming a director. He started as a third assistant director and by 1925 he became the youngest director on the Universal lot directing the westerns that Universal was famed for turning out. In 1928, he became a naturalized United States citizen.[5]:73

He directed his first non-Western, the lost Anybody Here Seen Kelly?, in 1928. This was followed by his first part-talkie films, The Shakedown and The Love Trap. He proved himself an able craftsman. Wyler became a United States citizen in 1928.


In the early 1930s began directing such films as Hell's Heroes, Dead End, and The Good Fairy. He became well known for his insistence on multiple retakes, resulting in often award-winning and critically acclaimed performances from his actors. After leaving Universal he began a long collaboration with Samuel Goldwyn for whom he directed such classics as Dodsworth (1936),[7] These Three (1936) and Dead End (1937). Wuthering Heights (1939),[8] The Westerner (1940), The Little Foxes (1941) and The Best Years of Our Lives (1946). It was during this time that Wyler began his famous collaboration with cinematographer Greg Toland. Toland and Wyler virtually created the "deep focus" style of film making wherein mutiple layers of action or characters could be seen in one scene, most famous being the bar scene in The Best Years of Our Lives. Toland went onto utilize the deep focus he mastered with Wyler when he shot Orson Welle's Citizen Kane.[9][10]

It was all Wyler. I had known all the horrors of no direction and bad direction. I now knew what a great director was and what he could mean to an actress. I will always be grateful to him for his toughness and his genius.

Bette Davis, discussing Jezebel[5]:162[11]

Bette Davis received three Oscar nominations for her screen work under Wyler, and won her second Oscar for her performance in Wyler's 1938 film Jezebel.[12][13] She told Merv Griffin in 1972 that Wyler trained her with that film to be a "far, far better actress" than she had been.[14] She recalled a scene that was only a bare paragraph in the script, but "without a word of dialog, Willy created a scene of power and tension. This was moviemaking on the highest plane," she said. "A scene of such suspense that I never have not marveled at the direction of it."[5]:162 During her acceptance speech when she received the AFI Life Achievement Award in 1977, she thanked him.[15]

Olivier and Oberon in Wuthering Heights

Laurence Olivier, whom Wyler directed in Wuthering Heights (1939) for his first-ever Oscar nomination, credited Wyler with teaching him how to act for the screen, despite clashing with Wyler on multiple occasions. Olivier would go on to hold the record for the most nominations in the Best Actor category at nine, tied with Spencer Tracy. Critic Frank S. Nugent wrote in the New York Times, "William Wyler has directed it magnificently. It is, unquestionably, one of the most distinguished pictures of the year."[16]:88 Variety described Olivier's performance as "fantastic... he not only brings conviction to his portrayal but translates intelligently its mystical quality."[16]:93

Five years later, in 1944, while visiting London, Wyler met with Olivier and his actress wife, Vivien Leigh. She invited him to see her performance in The Doctor's Dilemma, and Olivier asked him to direct him in his planned film, Henry V. But Wyler said he was "not a Shakespearian" and turned down the offer.[17][18]

If any film actor is having trouble with his career, can't master the medium and, anyway, wonders whether it's worth it, let him pray to meet a man like William Wyler.

Laurence Olivier[16]:86

In 1950, Wyler and Olivier made a second film together, Carrie, which was not a commercial success. However, some critics state that it nonetheless contains Olivier's finest film performance, but because of its old-fashioned story, the film was very under-appreciated:[16]:128[19] In critic Michael Billington's opinion:

If there were any justice in the world, Laurence Olivier would have got an Oscar for his unforgettable performance in Carrie.[20]:137

Director and screenwriter John Huston had been a close friend of Wyler during his career. When he was twenty-eight and penniless, sleeping in parks in London, Huston returned to Hollywood to see if he could find work. Wyler, four years his senior, had met Huston when he was directing his father, Walter Huston, in Dodsworth in 1936, and they got along well. Wyler thought Huston had the skill to be a good writer, and asked him to doctor the script for Jezebel.[21]:152 He later inspired Huston to become a director and became his "early mentor."[21]:xiii When America entered World War II in 1941, Wyler, Huston Anatole Litvak and Frank Capra, by then all directors, enlisted at the same time.[22] Later in his career, Huston recalled his friendship with Wyler during an interview:

Willy was certainly my best friend in the industry.... We seemed instantly to have many things in common.... Willy liked the things that I liked. We'd go down to Mexico. We'd go up in the mountains. And we'd gamble. He was a wonderful companion....He was equally capable of playing Beethoven on his violin, speeding around town on his motorcycle, or schussing down steep virgin snow trails.[23]


In 1941, Wyler directed Mrs. Miniver, based on the 1940 novel, it was the story of a middle class English family adjusting to the war in Europe and the bombing blitz in London.[24][25] It starred Greer Garson and Walter Pidgeon. Pidgeon, originally had doubts about taking on the role, until fellow actor Paul Lukas told him, "You will find working with Wyler to be the most delightful experience you ever had, and that's the way it turned out." Pidgeon recalls: "One thing that would have been a terrific regret in my life is if I had succeeded in getting out of doing Mrs. Miniver"[26]:335 He received his first Oscar nomination for his role, while his co-star, Greer Garson won her first and only Academy Award for her performance.

The idea for the film was controversial, since it was intended to make America less isolationist. By portraying the real-life suffering of British citizens in a fictional story, Americans might be more prone to help Britain during their war effort.[24][27] The film succeeded in its propaganda elements, showing England during its darkest days of the war.[26]:145 Years later, after having been in the war himself, Wyler said that the film "only scratched the surface of war... It was incomplete."[26]:228

However, before America entered the war in December 1941, all films that could be considered anti-Nazi were banned by the Hays Office.[28]:277 Even the U.S. ambassador to England, Joseph Kennedy, told the studios to stop making pro-British and anti-German films. Kennedy felt that British defeat was imminent.[29] But MGM producer Eddie Mannix disagreed, saying that "someone should salute England. And even if we lose $100,000, that'll be okay."[28]:344 Mrs. Miniver went on to win six Academy Awards, becoming the top box office hit of 1942. It was Wyler's first Academy Award for Best Director.[30]

Dear Mad Willy. I saw Mrs. Miniver last night. It is absolutely wonderful. You repeatedly amaze me with the demonstrations of your talent and I ask you to believe that it is with genuine pleasure that I salute this latest and greatest example of your work.

producer David Selznick[1]:235

President Roosevelt and British Prime Minister Winston Churchill both loved the film, said historian Emily Yellin, and Roosevelt wanted prints rushed to theaters nationwide. The Voice of America radio network broadcast the minister's speech from the film, magazines reprinted it, and it was copied onto leaflets and dropped over German-occupied countries. Churchill sent MGM head Louis B. Mayer a telegram claiming that "Mrs. Miniver is propaganda worth 100 battleships."[31] Bosley Crowther wrote in his New York Times review that Mrs. Miniver was the finest film yet made about the war, "and a most exalting tribute to the British."[32]

Between 1942 and 1945 Wyler volunteered to serve as a major in the United States Army Air Forces and directed a pair of documentaries: The Memphis Belle: A Story of a Flying Fortress (1944), the story of a Boeing B-17 and its U.S. Army Air Force crew;[33] and Thunderbolt! (1947), with Lester Koenig and John Sturges, highlighting a P-47 fighter-bomber squadron in the Mediterranean.[3] Wyler filmed The Memphis Belle at great personal risk, flying over enemy territory on actual bombing missions in 1943; on one flight, Wyler passed out from lack of oxygen. Wyler's associate, cinematographer Harold J. Tannenbaum, a First Lieutenant, was shot down and perished during the filming.[34]

Working on Thunderbolt! Wyler was exposed to such loud noise that he passed out. When he awoke, he found he was deaf in one ear.[5] Partial hearing with the aid of a hearing aid eventually came back years later.[35] Wyler returned from the War a disabled veteran.[36]

Returning from the War and unsure whether he could work again, Wyler turned to a subject that he knew well[36] and directed a film which captured the mood of the nation as it turned to peace after the war, The Best Years of Our Lives (1946).[37] This story of the homecoming of three veterans from World War II dramatized the problems of returning veterans in their adjustment back to civilian life. Arguably his most personal film, Best Years drew on Wyler's own experience returning home to his family after three years on the front. The Best Years of Our Lives won the Academy Award for Best Director (Wyler's second) and Academy Award for Best Picture, as well as seven other Academy Awards.

Audrey Hepburn in Roman Holiday (1953)

In 1949 Wyler directed The Heiress, which earned Olivia de Havilland her second Oscar and garnered additional Oscars for Best Art Direction, Best Costume Design, and Best Music. The film is considered by some to be a highlight in her career, "that could strike envy even in the most versatile and successful actress," according to one critic.[38][39][40]

De Havilland had seen the play in New York and felt she could play the lead perfectly. She then called Wyler to convince him to have Paramount buy the film rights. He flew to New York to see the play, and moved by the story, convinced the studio to buy it. Along with de Havilland, he managed to get Montgomery Clift and Ralph Richardson to co-star.[17]:265[41][42]


During the immediate postwar period, Wyler directed a handful of critically acclaimed and influential films. Roman Holiday (1953) introduced Audrey Hepburn to American audiences in her first starring role, winning her an Academy Award for Best Actress.[43][44] Wyler said of Hepburn years later, when describing truly great actresses, "In that league there's only ever been Garbo, and the other Hepburn, and maybe Bergman. It's a rare quality, but boy, do you know when you've found it."[45] The film was an instant hit, also winning for Best Costume Design (Edith Head), and Best Writing (Dalton Trumbo). Hepburn would eventually do three movies with Wyler, who her son said was one of the most important directors in her career.[46][47]

Friendly Persuasion (1956) was awarded the Palme d'Or (Golden Palm) at the Cannes Film Festival. And in 1959, Wyler directed Ben-Hur, which won 11 Oscars, a feat unequaled until Titanic in 1997. He had also assisted in the production of the 1925 version.

Charlton Heston as Ben-Hur

Wyler and Heston both knew what the film meant for MGM, which had massive investments in its final outcome, with the film's budget having gone from $7 million to $15 million, and the fact that MGM was already in dire financial straits.[48] They were aware that if it failed at the box office, MGM might go bankrupt.[49]

The film, like many epics, was difficult to make. When Heston was asked which scene he enjoyed doing most, he said "I didn't enjoy any of it. It was hard work."[50] Part of the reason for that was the financial stress placed on making the film a success. With a cast of fifteen thousand extras, a leading star, and being shot on 70mm film with stereophonic tracks, it was the most expensive film ever made at that time.[49] The nine-minute chariot race, for example, took six months to film.[51]

Ben-Hur became a great box office success. Wyler won his third Academy Award for Best Director and Charlton Heston his first and only Academy Award as its star.[52][53][54] Heston recalled in his autobiography that at first he had doubts about taking the role. But his agent advised him otherwise: "Don't you know that actors take parts with Wyler without even reading the damn script? I'm telling you, you have to do this picture!"[17]

Kirk Douglas had lobbied Wyler, who directed him in Detective Story in 1951, for the title role, but only after Wyler had already decided on Heston. He offered him instead the role of Messala, which Douglas rejected. Douglas then went on to star in Spartacus (1960).[55][56]

Ben-Hur cost $15 million to produce but earned $47 million by the end of 1961 and $90 million worldwide.[57][58] Audiences mobbed movie theaters in the months after it opened. Critic Pauline Kael praised Wyler's achievement:

I admire the artist who can make something good for the art house audience; but I also applaud the commercial heroism of a director who can steer a huge production and keep his sanity and perspective and decent human feelings beautifully intact.[59]:96


In 1968 he directed Barbra Streisand in her debut film, Funny Girl, costarring Omar Sharif, which became a huge financial success.[17]:385 It was nominated for eight Academy Awards, and like Audrey Hepburn in her first starring role, Streisand won as Best Actress, becoming the thirteenth actor to win an Oscar under his direction.[17]:385[60][61]

Streisand had already starred in the Broadway play of Funny Girl, with seven hundred performances. And although she knew the part well, Wyler still had to mold her stage role for the screen.[62] She naturally wanted to be involved in the film's production, often asking Wyler questions, but they both got along well.[63][64][65] "Things were ironed out when she discovered some of us knew what we were doing," kidded Wyler.

What originally attracted him to direct Streisand was similar to what attracted him about Audrey Hepburn, who had also been new to film audiences. He met with Streisand during her run of the play and became excited at the prospect of guiding another new star into an award-winning performance. He sensed and admired that Streisand had the same kind of dedication to being an actress as did Bette Davis, early in her career. "It just needed to be controlled and toned down for the movie camera."[20] Wyler said afterwards:

I'm terribly fond of her. She was very professional, very good, a hard worker, too hard at times. She would work day and night if you would let her. She is absolutely tireless.[66][67]


Wyler had worked with cinematographer Gregg Toland for six of his films, mostly in the 1930s. Toland used deep focus photographic technique for most of them, whereby he could keep all objects on the screen, whether foreground or background, in sharp focus at the same time. The technique gives the illusion of depth, and therefore makes the scene more true to life.[59]:77

A perfectionist, Wyler earned the nickname "40-take Wyler". On the set of Jezebel, Wyler forced Henry Fonda through 40 takes of one particular scene, his only guidance being "Again!" after each take. When Fonda asked for more direction, Wyler responded, "It stinks." Similarly, when Charlton Heston quizzed the director about the supposed shortcomings of his performance in Ben-Hur, Wyler simply told Heston[3] "Be better!"[68] However, Heston notes that by the time a scene is done, regardless of how hard it was to do, it always came off well:

The only answer I have is that his taste is impeccable and every actor knows it. Your faith in his taste and what it will do for your performance is what makes casting a Wyler picture a cinch...doing a film for Wyler is like getting the works in a Turkish bath. You darn near drown, but you come out smelling like a rose."[5]:351


Bette Davis in Jezebel (1938)

Fourteen actors won Oscars under Wyler's direction, including Bette Davis in Jezebel (1938) and her nomination for The Letter (1940).[69] Davis summed up their work together: "It was he who helped me to realize my full potential as an actress. I met my match in this exceptionally creative and talented director."[59]:79[70]

Other Oscar winners were Olivia de Havilland in The Heiress (1949), Audrey Hepburn in her debut film, Roman Holiday (1953),[71] Charlton Heston in Ben-Hur (1959), and Barbra Streisand in her debut film, Funny Girl (1968).

Wyler's films garnered more awards for participating artists and actors than any other director's in the history of Hollywood.[72] He received 12 Oscar nominations for Best Director in total, while dozens of his collaborators and actors won Oscars or were nominated. In 1965, Wyler won the Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award for career achievement. Eleven years later, he received the American Film Institute Life Achievement Award. In addition to his Best Picture and Best Director Oscar wins, 13 of Wyler's films earned Best Picture nominations. Other late Wyler films include The Children's Hour (1961), which was nominated for five Academy Awards.[73] Later films included The Collector (1963), Funny Girl (1968), and his final film, The Liberation of L.B. Jones (1970).

Personal life and death[edit]

Wyler was briefly married to actress Margaret Sullivan (from November 25, 1934 – March 13, 1936)[74] and married actress Margaret "Talli" Tallichet on October 23, 1938.[75][76] The couple remained together until his death; they had five children: Catherine, Judith, William Jr., Melanie and David. Catherine said during an interview that her mother played an important part in his career, often being his "gatekeeper" and his reader of scripts presented to him.[77]

On July 24, 1981, Wyler gave an interview with his daughter, Catherine, for Directed by William Wyler, a PBS documentary about his life and career.[78] Three days later, he died from a heart attack. He is interred at Forest Lawn Memorial Park Cemetery, near his older brother, Robert Wyler, sister-in-law, actress Cathy O'Donnell and his son, William "Billy" Wyler, Jr in Glendale, California.[79][80][81][82]

Honors and awards[edit]

Wyler is the most nominated director in Academy Awards history with 12 nominations. He won the Academy Award for Best Direction on three occasions, for his direction of Ben-Hur, The Best Years of Our Lives, and Mrs. Miniver. He is tied with Frank Capra and behind John Ford, who won four Oscars in this category.

Wyler also has the distinction of having directed more actors to Oscar-nominated performances than any other director in history: thirty-six. Out of these nominees, fourteen went on to win Oscars.[83]

William Wyler received the fourth AFI Life Achievement Award in 1976.[84] Among those who thanked him for directing her in her debut film, was Barbra Streisand.[85]

For his contributions to the motion picture industry, on February 8, 1960, Wyler has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 1731 Vine Street.[86][87]

Year Film Category Result
Academy Awards
1936 Dodsworth Best Director Nominated
1939 Wuthering Heights Best Director Nominated
1940 The Letter Best Director Nominated
1941 The Little Foxes Best Director Nominated
1942 Mrs. Miniver Best Director Won
1946 The Best Years of Our Lives Best Director Won
1949 The Heiress Best Motion Picture Nominated
Best Director Nominated
1952 Detective Story Best Director Nominated
1953 Roman Holiday Best Motion Picture Nominated
Best Director Nominated
1957 Friendly Persuasion Best Motion Picture Nominated
Best Director Nominated
1959 Ben-Hur Best Director Won
1965 The Collector Best Director Nominated
Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award Won
Directors Guild of America
1952 Detective Story Outstanding Directorial Achievement Nominated
1954 Roman Holiday Outstanding Directorial Achievement Nominated
1957 Friendly Persuasion Outstanding Directorial Achievement Nominated
1959 The Big Country Outstanding Directorial Achievement Nominated
1960 Ben-Hur Outstanding Directorial Achievement Won
1962 The Children's Hour Outstanding Directorial Achievement Nominated
1966 Lifetime Achievement Award
1969 Funny Girl Outstanding Directorial Achievement Nominated


This is a list of films directed by William Wyler.

* Universal's Mustang Series. Wyler made 21 two-reeler films for this series, all with a duration of 24 minutes.
** Universal's Blue Streak Series. Wyler made 6 five-reeler films for this series, all with a duration of an hour.
Sound films
Year Title Studio Genre Cast Notes
1930 Hell's Heroes Universal Drama Charles Bickford, Raymond Hatton, Fred Kohler
1930 The Storm Universal Drama Lupe Vélez, Paul Cavanagh, William Boyd
1931 A House Divided Universal Drama Walter Huston, Kent Douglas, Helen Chandler
1932 Tom Brown of Culver Universal Drama Tom Brown, H.B. Warner, Slim Summerville
1933 Her First Mate Universal Comedy Slim Summerville, Zasu Pitts, Una Merkel
1933 Counsellor at Law Universal Drama John Barrymore, Bebe Daniels
1934 Glamour Universal Drama Paul Lukas, Constance Cummings, Philip Reed
1935 The Good Fairy Universal Comedy Margaret Sullavan
1935 The Gay Deception Fox Comedy Frances Dee, Francis Lederer
1936 These Three Samuel Goldwyn Co. Drama Miriam Hopkins, Merle Oberon, Joel McCrea
1936 Dodsworth Samuel Goldwyn Co. Drama Walter Huston, Ruth Chatterton, Mary Astor
1936 Come and Get It Samuel Goldwyn Co. Drama Joel McCrea, Edward Arnold, Frances Farmer, Walter Brennan Replaced Howard Hawks after 42 days
1937 Dead End Samuel Goldwyn Co. Crime Humphrey Bogart, Joel McCrea, Sylvia Sydney
1938 Jezebel Warner Bros. Romance Bette Davis, Henry Fonda, George Brent
1939 Wuthering Heights Samuel Goldwyn Co. Romance Laurence Olivier, Merle Oberon
1940 The Westerner Samuel Goldwyn Co. Western Gary Cooper, Walter Brennan
1940 The Letter Warner Bros.
First National
Drama Bette Davis, Herbert Marshall
1941 The Little Foxes Samuel Goldwyn Co. Drama Bette Davis, Herbert Marshall, Teresa Wright
1942 Mrs. Miniver MGM War Drama Greer Garson, Walter Pidgeon, Teresa Wright
1944 The Memphis Belle First Motion Picture Unit War Documentary
First Technicolor film
1946 The Best Years of Our Lives Samuel Goldwyn Co. War Drama Fredric March, Dana Andrews, Harold Russell, Teresa Wright
1947 Thunderbolt! United States Air Force War Co-directed with John Sturges
Documentary / Short Film
1949 The Heiress Paramount Drama Olivia De Havilland, Montgomery Clift, Miriam Hopkins
1951 Detective Story Paramount Film-noir Kirk Douglas, Eleanor Parker
1952 Carrie Paramount Drama Laurence Olivier, Jennifer Jones, Miriam Hopkins
1953 Roman Holiday Paramount Romance Audrey Hepburn, Gregory Peck
1955 The Desperate Hours Paramount Film-noir Humphrey Bogart, Fredric March
1956 Friendly Persuasion Allied Artists Drama Gary Cooper DeLuxe Color film
1958 The Big Country Anthony Productions Drama Gregory Peck, Jean Simmons, Charlton Heston Technicolor film
1959 Ben-Hur MGM Drama Charlton Heston Technicolor film
1961 The Children's Hour Mirisch Productions Drama Audrey Hepburn, Shirley MacLaine, James Garner, Miriam Hopkins
1965 The Collector Columbia Drama Terence Stamp, Samantha Eggar Technicolor film
1966 How to Steal a Million Fox Comedy Audrey Hepburn, Peter O'Toole Technicolor film
1968 Funny Girl Columbia / Rastar Drama Barbra Streisand, Omar Sharif Technicolor film
1970 The Liberation of L.B. Jones Columbia Drama Lee J. Cobb, Anthony Zerbe, Roscoe Lee Browne, Lola Falana Technicolor film



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  2. ^ a b Freer, Ian. Movie Makers: 50 Iconic Directors. London: Quercus Publishers (2009) ISBN 978-1-84724-512-0
  3. ^ a b c son David William Wyler
  4. ^ a b c Wakeman, John, ed. World Film Directors: Vol. I, 1890–1945. New York: H.W. Wilson Co., 1987. ISBN 978-0-8242-0757-1.
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  6. ^ http://www.anb.org/articles/18/18-02119.html
  7. ^ Dodsworth (1936) - TCM
  8. ^ Wuthering Heights (1939) -Official Trailer
  9. ^ Photo of William Wyler and cinematographer Greg Toland discussing Wuthering Heights
  10. ^ Photo of William Wyler directing Merle Oberon and Laurence Olivier in Wuthering Heights
  11. ^ Photo of William Wyler going over a scene with Bette Davis
  12. ^ Jezebel (1938) - Trailer 1, Warner Movies
  13. ^ Jezebel (1938) - Trailer 2, Digicom TV
  14. ^ Bette Davis interview on Merv Griffin Show in 1972
  15. ^ Bette Davis Accepts the AFI Life Achievement Award in 1977
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  17. ^ a b c d e Miller, Gabriel: William Wyler: The Life and Films of Hollywood’s Most Celebrated Director. Lexington: University Press of Kentucky, 2013. ISBN 978-0-8131-4209-8
  18. ^ Candid photo of William Wyler with Laurence Olivier, Vivien Leigh, and their daughter Suzanne Farrington
  19. ^ Carrie (1952) compilation of clips
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  25. ^ Photo of William Wyler directing Greer Garson
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  28. ^ a b Eyman, Scott. Lion of Hollywood: The Life and Legend of Louis B. Mayer, Simon & Schuster (2005)
  29. ^ Wapshott, Nicholas. The Sphinx: Franklin Roosevelt, the Isolationists, and the Road to World War II, W.W. Norton & Co. (2015) p. 234, ISBN 978-0393088885.
  30. ^ Candid photo of Wyler, Greer Garson and Walter Pidgeon taking a break
  31. ^ Yellin, Emily. Our Mother's War: American Women at Home and at the Front During World War II, Simon & Schuster (2004), p. 100.
  32. ^ Troyan, Michael. A Rose for Mrs. Miniver: The Life of Greer Garson, Univ. of Kentucky Press (1999), e-book. ASIN: B00A6IOY1W.
  33. ^ The Memphis Belle - A Story Of A Flying Fortress (1944), full film
  34. ^ "The Memphis Belle: A Story of a Flying Fortress (1944)"
  35. ^ David William Wyler
  36. ^ a b Harris, Mark. Five Came Back: A Story of Hollywood and the Second World War. New York: Penguin Press, 2014. ISBN 978-1594204302
  37. ^ The Best Years Of Our Lives (1946) - trailer
  38. ^ "Olivia de Havilland", Los Angeles Times
  39. ^ Photo of William Wyler directing Olivia de Havilland in a scene from The Heiress
  40. ^ Photo of William Wyler directing Montgomery Clift and Olivia de Havilland in The Heiress
  41. ^ The Heiress - trailer
  42. ^ Olivia de Havilland receiving Best Actress Award for The Heiress
  43. ^ Roman Holiday -trailer, Paramount Movies
  44. ^ "Audrey Hepburn Wins Best Actress: 1954 Oscars"
  45. ^ Nourmand, Tony. Audrey Hepburn: The Paramount Years, Chronicle Books (2007) p. 16
  46. ^ Ferrer, Sean Hepburn. Audrey Hepburn, An Elegant Spirit: A Son Remembers, Simon & Schuster (2003) ebook
  47. ^ Photo of William Wyler with Audrey Hepburn
  48. ^ Schneider, Stephen Jay. 1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die, 6th edition, Barron's Educational Series (2015) p. 354
  49. ^ a b Bodaken, Bruce. The Managerial Moment of Truth: The Essential Step in Helping People Improve, Simon & Schuster (2006) p. 159
  50. ^ Kinn, Gail; Piazza, Jim. Academy Awards®: The Complete Unofficial History, Black Dog & Leventhal Publishers (2014) p. 135
  51. ^ McManus, George. A Conservative Christian Reviews the Greatest Movies Ever Made, Xulon Press (2003) p. 42
  52. ^ William Wyler receiving Oscar for Ben-Hur
  53. ^ Charlton Heston accepting Best Actor Award for Ben Hur, Oscars
  54. ^ Ben-Hur (1959) - trailer
  55. ^ Richards, Jeffrey. Hollywood's Ancient Worlds, Continuum Books (2008) p. 84
  56. ^ Photo of Kirk Douglas visiting the set of Ben-Hur, showing William Wyler and Charlton Heston
  57. ^ Photo of members of the cast discussing Ben-Hur
  58. ^ Photo of Wyler with cast, Haya Harareet seated, and producer Sam Zimbalist (right)
  59. ^ a b c Phillips, Gene D. Exiles in Hollywood: Major European Film Directors in America, Lehigh University Press (1998)
  60. ^ Funny Girl (1968) trailer
  61. ^ "Katharine Hepburn and Barbra Streisand Tie for Best Actress: 1969 Oscars"
  62. ^ Photo of Wyler directing Streisand and Omar Sharif
  63. ^ Waldman, Allison J. The Barbara Streisand Scrapbook, Citadel Press (2001) p. 48
  64. ^ Photo of Wyler and Streisand walking on the studio backlot
  65. ^ Photo of Wyler and Streisand sharing some laughs on the studio backlot
  66. ^ Nickens, Christopher; Swenson, Karen. The Films of Barbra Streisand, Citadel Press (2000) p. 48
  67. ^ Photo of Wyler and Streisand discussing her role
  68. ^ Wyler profile at palzoo.net Retrieved November 12, 2011.
  69. ^ The Letter (1940) - Trailer, Warner Movies
  70. ^ Photo of William Wyler directing Bette Davis in The Little Foxes (1941)
  71. ^ William Wyler, Director, Great American Things, Dec. 9, 2011
  72. ^ William Wyler movies, Ultimate Movie Rankings
  73. ^ Photo of William Wyler with the co-stars Audrey Hepburn and Shirley MacLaine of The Children's Hour. Joining them in the photo are Dean Martin and Frank Sinatra, who visited the set.
  74. ^ Photo of William Wyler with first wife, Margaret Sullavan
  75. ^ Early photo of William Wyler with wife, Margaret Tallichet
  76. ^ Photo of William Wyler with wife, Margaret Tallichet
  77. ^ "Catherine Wyler Talks the Oscars and Growing Up with Hollywood Royalty", 6 min.
  78. ^ "Directed by William Wyler", PBS
  79. ^ "William Wyler (1902 - 1981) - Find A Grave Memorial". www.findagrave.com. Retrieved 2016-06-27. 
  80. ^ "Robert Wyler (1900 - 1971) - Find A Grave Memorial". www.findagrave.com. Retrieved 2016-06-27. 
  81. ^ "Cathy O'Donnell (1923 - 1970) - Find A Grave Memorial". www.findagrave.com. Retrieved 2016-06-27. 
  82. ^ "William Wyler, Jr (1946 - 1949) - Find A Grave Memorial". www.findagrave.com. Retrieved 2016-06-27. 
  83. ^ http://www.altfg.com/blog/actors/william-wyler-top-oscar-directors-for-actors-i/
  84. ^ "William Wyler Accepts the AFI Life Achievement Award in 1976", AFI
  85. ^ Barbra Streisand speaking at the AFI Award tribute to William Wyler
  86. ^ "William Wyler | Hollywood Walk of Fame". www.walkoffame.com. Retrieved 2016-06-12. 
  87. ^ "William Wyler". latimes.com. Retrieved 2016-05-01. 

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