Robert Altman

Robert Altman Darsteller in Filmen

Robert Bernard Altman war ein US-amerikanischer Regisseur, Autorenfilmer und Filmproduzent. Ab sind seine Filme dem Kino des New Hollywood zuzurechnen. Während seiner jährigen Laufbahn drehte Altman insgesamt 86 Filme, produzierte Robert Bernard Altman (* Februar in Kansas City, Missouri, USA; † November in Los Angeles, Kalifornien, USA) war ein US-amerikanischer. Lüften wir den Hut und verneigen unser Haupt vor einem großen Künstler! Robert Altman war Bomberpilot, Versicherungs-Vertreter, Erfinder (u.a. e. Der Alltag einer Gruppen von Menschen in Los Angeles ist in Robert Altmans Meisterwerk auf wundersame Weise miteinander verknüpft. Es geht u. a. um. Serien und Filme mit Robert Altman: Gun – Kaliber 45 · Tanner for President · M*​A*S*H · Bonanza · Alfred Hitchcock präsentiert · Z-Channel · Bei Anruf .

Robert Altman

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Robert Altman Video

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Altman directed some 65 industrial films and documentaries before being hired by a local businessman in to write and direct a feature film in Kansas City on juvenile delinquency.

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 , a documentary rushed into theaters to capitalize on the actor's recent death and marketed to his emerging cult following.

After just two episodes, Altman resigned due to differences with a producer, but this exposure enabled him to forge a successful TV career.

Over the next decade Altman worked prolifically in television and almost exclusively in series dramas directing multiple episodes of Whirlybirds , The Millionaire , U.

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. Though he was frequently fired from TV projects 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 land new assignments.

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 , which was a critical and box-office disaster.

In , 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 release. It was Altman's highest-grossing film, released during a time of increasing anti-war sentiment in the United States.

Miller , a Revisionist Western in which the mordant songs of Leonard Cohen underscore a gritty vision of the American frontier; The Long Goodbye , 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 , an adaptation of the Edward Anderson novel previously filmed by Nicholas Ray as They Live by Night ; California Split , a gambling comedy-drama shot partially on location in Reno, Nevada ; and Nashville , which had a strong political theme set against the world of country music.

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 , he directed the musical film Popeye.

It was soon 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.

In , the director sold Lion's Gate to producer Jonathan Taplin after his political satire Health shot in early for a Christmas release was shelved by longtime distributor 20th Century Fox following tepid test and festival screenings throughout The departure of longtime Altman partisan Alan Ladd, Jr.

Unable to secure major financing in the post-New Hollywood blockbuster era because of his 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 , a critically antipodean adaptation of a play that Altman had directed on Broadway.

In , Altman staged a production of Igor Stravinsky 's The Rake's Progress at the University of Michigan , where he concurrently taught a course on his films.

Shortly thereafter, he returned to film Secret Honor with students. In , the University of Michigan Library acquired Altman's archive.

The teen comedy O. Still, widespread popularity with audiences continued to elude him. He continued to regain a modicum of critical favor for his television mockumentary Tanner '88 , a collaboration with Garry Trudeau set in the milieu of a United States presidential campaign, for which he earned a Primetime Emmy Award.

A theatrical version of the film was a modest success in the United States, marking a significant turning point in the director's critical resurgence.

He revitalized his career in earnest with The Player , a satire of Hollywood. Altman then directed Short Cuts , 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 s; he won the Golden Lion at the Venice International Film Festival and another Oscar nomination for Best Director.

In , Altman directed Kansas City , expressing his love of s jazz through a complicated kidnapping story. Gosford Park , a large-cast, British country house murder mystery , was included on many critics' lists of the ten best films of that year.

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 always wanted to make without studio interference.

Altman was still developing new projects up until his death, including a film based on Hands on a Hard Body: The Documentary 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.

Altman was married three times: His first wife was LaVonne Elmer. They were married from —, and had a daughter, Christine.

His second wife was Lotus Corelli. They were married from —, and had two sons, Michael and Stephen. Steven is a production designer who often worked with his father.

Altman's third wife was Kathryn Reed. They were married from until his death in They had two sons, Robert and Matthew.

Altman became the stepfather to Konni Reed when he married Kathryn. Kathryn Altman, who died in , co-authored a book about Altman that was published in He moved his family and business headquarters to New York City, but eventually moved back to Malibu, where he lived until his death.

Altman despised the television series MASH which followed his film, citing it as being the antithesis of what his movie was about, and citing its anti-war messages as being "racist".

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.

Following his successful career in television, Altman began his new career in the movie industry when he was in middle-age. He understood the creative limits imposed by the television genre, and now set out to direct and write films which would express his personal visions about American society and Hollywood.

His films would later be described as " auteuristic attacks" and "idiosyncratic variations" of traditional films, typically using subtle comedy or satire as a way of expressing his observations.

His films were typically related to political, ideological, and personal subjects, and Altman was known for "refusing to compromise his own artistic vision.

However, he still felt that his independence as a filmmaker did him little harm overall:. I don't think there's a filmmaker alive, or who ever lived, who's had a better shake than I've had.

I've never been without a project and it's always been a project of my own choosing. So I don't know how much better it could be.

I have not become a mogul, I don't build castles and I don't have a vast personal fortune, but I have been able to do what I've wanted to do and I've done it a lot.

With his independent style of directing, he developed a bad reputation among screenwriters and those on the business side of films.

He admits, "I have a bad reputation with writers, developed over the years: 'Oh, he doesn't do what you write, blah blah blah.

Ring Lardner was very pissed off with me," for not following his script. His reputation among actors is quite different, however.

With them, his independence sometimes extended to his choice of actors, often going against consensus. Cher , for instance, credits him for launching her career with both the stage play and film, Come Back to the Five and Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean Everyone told him not to cast me.

Nobody would give me a break. I am convinced that Bob was the only one who was brave enough to do it. You know, all this talk about Bob being this kind of irascible, difficult kind of person?

Well, he was never that way with an actor or with a creative person that I saw. Never, never, never.

He saved all that for the money people. However, director Robert Dornhelm states, Altman "looked at film as a pure, artistic venue.

They were well-meaning people who wanted him to get what he deserved, which was a big commercial hit. But when it came down to the art or the money, he was with the art.

Sally Kellerman , noting Altman's willful attitude, still looks back with regret at giving up a chance to act in one of his films:. He hung up on me.

Bob was as stubborn and arrogant as I was at the time, but the sad thing is that I cheated myself out of working with someone I loved so much, someone who made acting both fun and easy and who trusted his actors.

Bob loved actors. Stars would line up to work for nothing for Bob Altman. Unlike directors whose work fits within various film genres , such as Westerns, musicals, war films, or comedies, Altman's work has been defined as more "anti-genre" by various critics.

Geraldine Chaplin , daughter of Charlie Chaplin , compared the humor in his films to her father's films:. They're funny in the right way.

Funny in a critical way — of what the world is and the world we live in. They were both geniuses in their way.

They alter your experience of reality. They have their world and they have their humor. That humor is so rare. Altman made it clear that he did not like "storytelling" in his films, contrary to the way most television and mainstream movies are made.

According to Altman biographer Mitchell Zuckoff , "he disliked the word 'story,' believing that a plot should be secondary to an exploration of pure or, even better, impure human behavior.

He especially loved many voices, sometimes arguing, sometimes agreeing, ideally overlapping, a cocktail party or a street scene captured as he experienced it.

I felt it really strongly. And I thought, "I don't know who this guy is, but that's what I want to do. I want to do that kind of work.

Film author Charles Derry writes that Altman's films "characteristically contain perceptive observations, telling exchanges, and moments of crystal clear revelation of human folly.

Miller is a satire on Westerns; [40] author Matthew Kennedy states that Nashville is a "brilliant satire of America immediately prior to the Bicentennial"; [41] A Wedding is a satire on American marriage rituals and hypocrisy; [42] Altman himself said that The Player was "a very mild satire" about the Hollywood film industry, and Vincent Canby agreed, stating that "as a satire, The Player tickles.

It doesn't draw blood. Altman blames the box office failure of The Long Goodbye , a detective story, on the erroneous marketing of the film as a thriller:.

When the picture opened, it was a big, big flop. I went to David Picker and said, "You can't do this. No wonder the fucking picture is failing.

It's giving the wrong impression. You make it look like a thriller and it's not, it's a satire. Similarly, Altman also blames the failure of O.

Altman favored stories expressing the interrelationships among several characters, being more interested in character motivation than in intricate plots.

He therefore tended to sketch out only a basic plot for the film, referring to the screenplay as a "blueprint" for action.

By encouraging his actors to improvise dialogue, Altman thus became known as an "actor's director," a reputation that attracted many notable actors to work as part of his large casts.

Performers enjoy working with Altman in part because "he provides them with the freedom to develop their characters and often alter the script through improvisation and collaboration," notes Derry.

Richard Baskin says that "Bob was rather extraordinary in his way of letting people do what they did. He trusted you to do what you did and therefore you would kill for him.

He said, "Have you brought your scripts? He said, "Well, throw them away. You don't need them.

You need to know who you are and where you are and who you're with. It was like being onstage with a full house every second.

All the circus acts you had inside your body you'd do just for him. Altman regularly let his actors develop a character through improvisation during rehearsal or sometimes during the actual filming.

Nevertheless, Altman preferred to use improvisation as a tool for helping his actors develop their character. Improvisation is misunderstood.

We don't just turn people loose. When I cast a film, most of my creative work is done. I have to be there to turn the switch on and give them encouragement as a father figure, but they do all the work.

All I'm trying to do is make it easy on the actor, because once you start to shoot, the actor is the artist.

I have to give them confidence and see that they have a certain amount of protection so they can be creative.

I let them do what they became actors for in the first place: to create. Carol Burnett remembers Altman admitting that many of the ideas in his films came from the actors.

That was truly an astonishing thing," she said. He would inspire you out of sheer necessity to come up with stuff that you didn't know you were capable of, that you didn't know you had in you.

He was so genuinely mischievous and so damn funny. He wrote years later, "I think that in hindsight, Donald and I were two elitist, arrogant actors who really weren't getting Altman's genius.

We thought that's the way movies were. That they were that joyous an experience. If you had any kind of career, you quickly saw that most directors don't really trust actors, don't really want to see actors acting.

That was the difference with Bob Altman. He loved actors and wanted to see acting. Unlike television and traditional films, Altman also avoided "conventional storytelling," and would opt for showing the "busy confusion of real life," observes Albert Lindauer.

I equate this work more with painting than with theater or literature. Stories don't interest me. Basically, I'm more interested in behavior.

I don't direct, I watch. I have to be thrilled if I expect the audience to be thrilled. Because what I really want to see from an actor is something I've never seen before, so I can't tell them what it is.

I try to encourage actors not to take turns. To deal with conversation as conversation. I mean, that's what the job is, I think.

It's to make a comfort area so that an actor can go beyond what he thought he could do. Patricia Resnick often wrote his screenplays.

Altman was one of the few filmmakers who "paid full attention to the possibilities of sound" when filming. This produced a "dense audio experience" for viewers, allowing them to hear multiple scraps of dialogue, as if they were listening in on various private conversations.

Altman recognized that although large casts hurt a film commercially, "I like to see a lot of stuff going on. Altman first used overlapping soundtracks in MASH , a sound technique which movie author Michael Barson describes as "a breathtaking innovation at the time.

Miller , also considered among his finest films. However, overlapping dialogue among large groups of actors adds complexity to Altman's films, and they were often criticized as appearing haphazard or disconnected on first viewing.

Some of his critics, however, changed their mind after seeing them again. British film critic, David Thomson , gave Nashville a bad review after watching it the first time, but later wrote, "But going back to Nashville and some of the earlier films, The mosaic, or mix, permits a freedom and a human idiosyncrasy that Renoir might have admired.

Yes, I did think it was going to be great, all the work was so good, every actor was inspired, and Altman's team was intensely competent, and he was that rare kind of genius who knows what works and what doesn't at the moment it is happening.

Thomson later recognized those aspects as being part of Altman's style, beginning with MASH : " MASH began to develop the crucial Altman style of overlapping, blurred sound and images so slippery with zoom that there was no sense of composition.

That is what makes Nashville so absorbing. Altman's distinctive style of directing carried over into his preferences for camerawork.

Among them was his use of widescreen compositions, intended to capture the many people or activities taking place on screen at the same time.

For some films, such as McCabe and Mrs. Miller , he created a powerful visual atmosphere with cinematographer Vilmos Zsigmond , such as scenes using fluid camerawork, zoom lenses, and a smoky effect using special fog filters.

In Nashville , Altman used sets with noticeable colors of reds, whites and blues. For The Long Goodbye , he insisted that Zsigmond keep the camera mobile by mounting it to moving objects.

In and out. Side to side. He'd put the camera on a jib arm and float across the scene and pick out these shots as he went along — quite a nice way of working.

We rather enjoyed doing things "improv. During the first few days of the shoot, he would "create" different approaches on a moment's notice.

He would show me how he wanted the camera to move — always move. Which was fun. The actors loved it, and I was always challenged to find ways to shoot what Altman came up with.

Vilmos Zsigmond's cinematography in McCabe and Mrs. Miller received a nomination by the British Academy Film Awards.

When using music in his films, Altman was known to be highly selective, often choosing music that he personally liked. Director Paul Thomas Anderson , who worked with him, notes that "Altman's use of music is always important," adding, "Bob loved his music, didn't he?

My God, he loved his music". Miller , and another for the final scene in A Wedding For Nashville , Altman had numerous new country music songs written by his cast to create a realistic atmosphere.

A number of music experts have written about Altman's use of music, including Richard R. Ness, who wrote about the scores for many of Altman's films in an article, considered to be a valuable resource for understanding Altman's filmmaking technique.

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Robert Altman Video

Robert Altman talks McCabe and Mrs. Miller on The Dick Cavett Show (1971)

Robert Altman Robert Altman

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4 thoughts on “Robert Altman

  1. Es ist schade, dass ich mich jetzt nicht aussprechen kann - ist erzwungen, wegzugehen. Ich werde befreit werden - unbedingt werde ich die Meinung aussprechen.

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