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Robert Towne is a Actor, Director, Scriptwriter and Producer American born on 23 november 1934 at Los Angeles (USA)

Robert Towne

Robert Towne
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Birth name Robert Bertram Schwartz
Nationality USA
Birth 23 november 1934 (85 years) at Los Angeles (USA)

Robert Towne (born Robert Bertram Schwartz; November 23, 1934) is an American screenwriter and director. His most notable work may be his Academy Award-winning original screenplay for Roman Polanski's Chinatown (1974).

Biography

Towne commence sa carrière à Hollywood au cours des années 1960 sous l’égide du producteur et réalisateur Roger Corman. Pour celui-ci, il scénarise des films à petit budget dans lesquels il joue également sous le pseudonyme d’Edward Wain. Sous son propre nom, il scénarise le drame fantastique La Tombe de Ligeia qui fait partie du cycle Edgar Poe que Corman réalise. Il est également scénariste-consultant pour le film Bonnie et Clyde réalisé par Arthur Penn et dont les auteurs principaux sont Robert Benton et David Newman.

C’est pendant les années 1970 que le talent de scénariste Robert Towne s’impose pour de bon avec des longs-métrages comme La Dernière Corvée ou Shampoo de Hal Ashby et surtout Chinatown, un drame policier conçu en hommage au film noir. Chinatown met en vedette Jack Nicholson et Faye Dunaway et est réalisé par Roman Polanski. La collaboration entre Towne et Polanski est houleuse, mais le film connaît un grand succès à sa sortie et est aujourd’hui considéré comme un classique. Towne verra son scénario récompensé par un Oscar et un Golden Globe. Parallèlement, Towne continue à officier comme scénariste-consultant (script doctor) et est amené à contribuer à des films comme Le Parrain ou Le Coureur de Marathon.

Towne passe à la réalisation au début des années 1980 avec Personal Best, un drame portant sur la liaison amoureuse entre deux athlètes féminines de haut niveau incarnées par Mariel Hemingway et Patrice Donnelly (qui est véritablement une athlète de compétition). Bien qu'il bénéficie d’un accueil critique sympathique, le film passe inaperçu lors de sa sortie. Durant la même période, Towne travaille à la scénarisation de Greystoke, la légende de Tarzan, ambitieuse production réalisée par Hugh Hudson et proposant une nouvelle approche du célèbre mythe. Insatisfait du résultat, Towne signe finalement son scénario du pseudonyme de P.H. Vazak, Vazak étant le nom de son chien. Il n’en obtient pas moins une nomination aux Oscars.

Par la suite, Towne réalise Tequila Sunrise, un drame romantico-policier avec Michelle Pfeiffer, Kurt Russell et Mel Gibson qui connait une carrière honorable. Il scénarise également une suite à Chinatown intitulée The Two Jakes. Il souhaite en assurer la mise-en-scène mais c’est finalement Jack Nicholson qui réalisera le film en plus d'y reprendre son personnage de Chinatown. The Two Jakes était conçu comme le deuxième volet d'une trilogie. Devant le manque d'enthousiasme suscité par le film, l'idée de produire un troisième épisode est abandonné.

Pendant les années 1990, Towne scénarise ou coscénarise certains des films mettant en vedette Tom Cruise (Jours de tonnerre, La Firme, Mission impossible). Il réalise également le drame biographique Without Limits, le deuxième film en autant d'années consacré au coureur olympique Steve Prefontaine.

Son œuvre la plus récente, Demande à la poussière, date de 2003. Il s'agit d'un drame sentimental adaptant un roman de John Fante publié en 1939 et que Towne a longtemps souhaité porter à l’écran. L'action se déroule dans le Los Angeles de la grande dépression, mais le tournage a lieu en Afrique du Sud. L'accueil que le film reçoit est plutôt mitigé. En 2013, Towne se joint à l'équipe de production de la septième et dernière saison de la série Mad Men à titre de producteur-consultant.

Best films

Mission: Impossible II (2000)
(Scriptwriter)
Mission: Impossible (1996)
(Scriptwriter)
The Rock (1996)
(Scriptwriter)
The Firm (1993)
(Scriptwriter)
Days of Thunder (1990)
(Scriptwriter)
Crimson Tide (1995)
(Scriptwriter)

Usually with

Warren Beatty
Warren Beatty
(8 films)
Tom Cruise
Tom Cruise
(7 films)
Roger Corman
Roger Corman
(4 films)
Luana Anders
Luana Anders
(4 films)
Source : Wikidata

Filmography of Robert Towne (40 films)

Display filmography as list

Actor

Suspect Zero, 1h36
Directed by E. Elias Merhige
Origin USA
Genres Thriller, Action, Adventure, Crime
Themes Serial killer films
Actors Aaron Eckhart, Ben Kingsley, Carrie-Anne Moss, Kevin Chamberlin, Harry Lennix, Nicole DeHuff
Roles Le professeur Dates
Rating57% 2.899372.899372.899372.899372.89937
A man is seated in a diner who is revealed as Harold, a traveling salesman. He is joined by a gentleman who makes him uncomfortable. After leaving the diner, Harold is found dead, which leads to FBI Agents Thomas Mackelway (Aaron Eckhart) and Fran Kulok (Carrie-Anne Moss) being brought in on the case. There appears to be history between Mackelway and Kulok and a cloud of competency is addressed by flashbacks of Mackelway's recent suspension and issues he's undergone. As the investigation proceeds, the agents begin to become aware of the possible existence of "Suspect Zero", a mythical "super serial killer" responsible for hundreds of deaths across all 50 states who leaves no evidence behind to link his crimes together.
The Pick-up Artist, 1h21
Directed by James Toback
Origin USA
Genres Drama, Comedy, Comedy-drama, Romantic comedy, Crime, Romance
Actors Molly Ringwald, Robert Downey Jr., Dennis Hopper, Danny Aiello, Harvey Keitel, Vanessa Williams
Roles Stan
Rating53% 2.6531652.6531652.6531652.6531652.653165
Randy Jensen is a smart, independent tour guide who beats womanizer Jack Jericho at his own game. After a quick fling, her indifference only causes him to become smitten with her.
Shampoo
Shampoo (1975)
, 1h49
Directed by Hal Ashby
Origin USA
Genres Drama, Comedy, Comedy-drama, Romantic comedy, Romance
Themes Films about sexuality, Erotic films, Political films
Actors Warren Beatty, Julie Christie, Goldie Hawn, Lee Grant, Jack Warden, Tony Bill
Rating62% 3.1499353.1499353.1499353.1499353.149935
Shampoo is set during a 24-hour period in 1968, on the eve of a presidential election that would result in Richard Nixon's election to the American presidency. George Roundy is a successful Beverly Hills hairdresser, whose occupation and charisma have provided him the perfect platform from which to meet and have sex with beautiful women, including his current girlfriend Jill.
Drive, He Said, 1h30
Directed by Jack Nicholson
Origin USA
Genres Drama, Comedy, Comedy-drama
Themes Sports films, Basketball films
Actors Karen Black, Bruce Dern, Robert Towne, Michael Margotta, Henry Jaglom, Michael Warren
Roles Richard
Rating59% 2.9532152.9532152.9532152.9532152.953215
The film is an examination of libidinous basketball star Hector Bloom (William Tepper), and contrasts his sporting prowess on the court to his bedroom antics. Most notably, Hector has an affair with his favorite professor's wife Olive (Karen Black) that goes nowhere. This, and many other events, occur within a heated early 1970s backdrop of university politics, sporting hijinx, and anti-war sentiments.
The Zodiac Killer, 1h27
Directed by Tom Hanson
Origin USA
Genres Thriller, Documentary, Horror, Crime
Themes Serial killer films
Actors Doodles Weaver, Robert Towne
Roles Man in Bar #3 (as Robert Tubin)
Rating43% 2.177232.177232.177232.177232.17723
San Francisco connaît une série de meurtres apparemment aléatoires sans motif. La police est ridiculisée par des appels téléphoniques et des lettres. Le maniaque pourrait-il être le violent conducteur de camion, ou le facteur aux manières douces, ou même un flic ?
Creature from the Haunted Sea, 1h15
Directed by Roger Corman
Origin USA
Genres Comedy, Horror comedy, Horror
Themes Seafaring films, Transport films, Comedy horror films
Actors Betsy Jones-Moreland, Antony Carbone, Robert Towne, Sonia Noemí, Esther Sandoval
Roles Sparks Moran / Agent XK150 / Narrator
Rating34% 1.709241.709241.709241.709241.70924
During a revolution in Cuba, an American international playboy, promoter and mobster Renzo Capeto (Anthony Carbone) comes up with a get-rich-quick scheme and uses his boat to help a group of loyalists headed by Colonel Tostada (Edmundo Rivera Alvarez) escape with Cuba's national treasury which they plan to use to stage a counterrevolution. However, CIA agent XK150, Sparks Moran (Edward Wain a.k.a. Robert Towne) has infiltrated the gang. Capeto plans to steal the money and claim that the mythical "Creature from the Haunted Sea" rose up out of the sea and devoured the loyalists. But what he doesn't know is that there is a real sea monster lurking in the very waters where he plans to kill his passengers. Little does he know that the actual creature may make his plan all too easy to pull off! When the creature upsets his plans, Capeto decides to sink his boat in 30 feet of water and then retrieve the treasure at a later time. Using a nearby island as a base, he and his gang attempt to salvage the loot, but the monster picks them off one by one, except for Agent Sparks Moran and his girlfriend Carmelita (Blanquita Romero).
Last Woman on Earth, 1h4
Directed by Roger Corman
Origin USA
Genres Drama, Science fiction, Horror, Romance
Themes La fin du monde, Post-apocalyptic films, Films about religion, Films set in the future, Political films, Dystopian films, Disaster films
Actors Betsy Jones-Moreland, Robert Towne, Antony Carbone
Roles Martin Joyce
Rating48% 2.407222.407222.407222.407222.40722
Harold Gern (Antony Carbone), a successful businessman from New York who is constantly in legal trouble, is spending a holiday in Puerto Rico with his attractive wife Evelyn (Betsy Jones-Moreland), whom he married "between trials". They are joined by Martin Joyce (Edward Wain), Harold's lawyer, who has come to discuss the latest indictment.

Director

Ask the Dust, 1h57
Directed by Robert Towne
Origin USA
Genres Drama, Romance
Themes Films about writers
Actors Colin Farrell, Salma Hayek, Donald Sutherland, Idina Menzel, Eileen Atkins, Justin Kirk
Rating57% 2.8992.8992.8992.8992.899
The story is set during the Great Depression, specifically around the time of the 1933 Long Beach earthquake. Camilla (Salma Hayek) is a fiery, beautiful Mexican café waitress who aspires one day to be above her current standing in society, to make something of herself, to give her and her future children a place and chance in the world. Farrell's character is portrayed as a struggling writer who comes to Los Angeles's Bunker Hill area to start his writing career. Though he falls in love with Camilla, he does not marry her. Later, Camilla is infected by tuberculosis and leaves Arturo without informing him. When Arturo finds her, she is about to die and he promises to marry her, but Camilla dies and Arturo writes a novel dedicated to Camilla. Arturo writes a dedication in one of his books to her and throws it into the sand.
Without Limits, 1h57
Directed by Robert Towne
Origin USA
Genres Drama, Biography
Themes Sports films, Athletics films
Actors Billy Crudup, Donald Sutherland, Monica Potter, Jeremy Sisto, Matthew Lillard, Judith Ivey
Rating71% 3.597463.597463.597463.597463.59746
La vie du coureur de fond américain Steve Prefontaine.
Tequila Sunrise, 1h55
Directed by Robert Towne
Origin USA
Genres Thriller, Comedy-drama, Action, Adventure, Crime, Romance
Themes Medical-themed films, Films about drugs
Actors Mel Gibson, Michelle Pfeiffer, Kurt Russell, Raúl Juliá, J. T. Walsh, Gabriel Damon
Rating60% 3.0496653.0496653.0496653.0496653.049665
Dale "Mac" McKussic (Mel Gibson) is a former drug dealer trying to go straight. His close friend Nick Frescia (Kurt Russell) is a Detective Lieutenant with the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department who, in spite of their long-term relationship going back to high school, is duty-bound to bring Mac to justice if he is selling drugs again, as DEA Agent Hal Maguire (J. T. Walsh) believes to be the case.
Personal Best, 2h4
Directed by Robert Towne
Origin USA
Genres Drama
Themes Films about sexuality, Sports films, LGBT-related films, Athletics films, LGBT-related films, LGBT-related film, Lesbian-related films
Actors Mariel Hemingway, Scott Glenn, Jim Moody, Larry Pennell, Luana Anders
Rating62% 3.149233.149233.149233.149233.14923
Chris Cahill is a young athlete who competes unsuccessfully in the 1976 U.S. Olympic trials. She meets a more experienced track and field competitor, Tory Skinner, and their friendship evolves into a romantic relationship.

Scriptwriter

Ask the Dust, 1h57
Directed by Robert Towne
Origin USA
Genres Drama, Romance
Themes Films about writers
Actors Colin Farrell, Salma Hayek, Donald Sutherland, Idina Menzel, Eileen Atkins, Justin Kirk
Rating57% 2.8992.8992.8992.8992.899
The story is set during the Great Depression, specifically around the time of the 1933 Long Beach earthquake. Camilla (Salma Hayek) is a fiery, beautiful Mexican café waitress who aspires one day to be above her current standing in society, to make something of herself, to give her and her future children a place and chance in the world. Farrell's character is portrayed as a struggling writer who comes to Los Angeles's Bunker Hill area to start his writing career. Though he falls in love with Camilla, he does not marry her. Later, Camilla is infected by tuberculosis and leaves Arturo without informing him. When Arturo finds her, she is about to die and he promises to marry her, but Camilla dies and Arturo writes a novel dedicated to Camilla. Arturo writes a dedication in one of his books to her and throws it into the sand.