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William A. Wellman is a Actor, Director, Scriptwriter, Producer and Assistant Director American born on 29 february 1896 at Brookline (USA)

William A. Wellman

William A. Wellman
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Birth name William Augustus Wellman
Nationality USA
Birth 29 february 1896 at Brookline (USA)
Death 9 december 1975 (at 79 years) at Los Angeles (USA)

William Augustus Wellman (February 29, 1896 – December 9, 1975) was an American film director. Although Wellman began his film career as an actor, he worked on over 80 films, as director, producer and consultant, but most often as a director, notable for his work in crime, adventure and action genre films, often focusing on aviation themes, a particular passion. He also directed several well-regarded satirical comedies.

Wellman directed the 1927 film Wings, which became the first film to win an Academy Award for Best Picture at the 1st Academy Awards ceremony.

Biography

Ayant servi comme ambulancier, puis pilote dans l'escadrille La Fayette, il s'attache à montrer dans ses films de guerre la réalité du front plus qu'à idéaliser l'héroïsme des soldats. Même souci de vérité dans ses westerns, son genre de prédilection, où l'action est souvent délaissée au profit de scènes où se font jour les tensions d'un groupe ou la dimension psychologique des personnages. Nulle violence gratuite enfin : Wellman « omet » souvent de filmer une bagarre dans son intégralité, préférant en souligner les à-côtés, avec une grande sobriété de moyens. Sa volonté de montrer la réalité le conduit à préférer les décors naturels ou à s'affranchir des conditions de tournage imposées par ses producteurs : pour Les Ailes (Wings), il exige d'attendre l'arrivée de nuages dans un ciel parfaitement bleu pour rendre les combats aériens plus saisissants.

Cinéaste « sensible, ouvert aux injustices sociales » (selon Jean Tulard), plus que cinéaste engagé, il réalise L'Étrange Incident (The Ox-Bow Incident) (1943) western qui dénonce en 1885 le lynchage ; et ce dans une période où la ségrégation raciale vis-à-vis des Noirs se double de la mise au ban des Japonais soupçonnés de collaboration, ainsi que Wild Boys of the Road, film douloureux sur la violence engendrée par la Grande Dépression.

Plusieurs de ses westerns, témoignent de sa volonté de montrer la contribution essentielle de la femme dans l'histoire des États-Unis. Dans La Ville abandonnée, Anne Baxter tient tête à une bande de hors-la-loi ; dans Convoi de femmes, cent cinquante femmes déclassées (dont une fille mère, et deux prostituées, voire plus de deux, comme le suggèrent certaines répliques) traversent les États-Unis et affrontent avec courage et dignité de multiples épreuves pour épouser des colons à demi sauvages qui représentent leur dernière chance de réhabilitation.

Plus encore, en 1944, dans Buffalo Bill avant tout le monde dans le western parlant, il réhabilite l'Indien, affamé par les chasses au bison. Il montre le célèbre héros en porte-à-faux avec les deux civilisations de l'ouest cracher sur une médaille présidentielle reçue pour ses combats victorieux contre ses amis Cheyennes. Il poursuit la réhabilitation en 1951 dans Au-delà du Missouri, mais sans le même ton polémique et en situant l'histoire au temps des trappeurs. De l'union d'un blanc et d'une indienne naîtra un enfant métis. Par ailleurs dans la ville abandonnée l’héroïne et son grand-père vivent au côté des Apaches qui ne leur font aucun mal.

Si sa carrière fut couronnée de nombreux succès (Les Ailes et Une étoile est née, entre autres), il termine sur un échec, avec C'est la guerre (Lafayette Escadrille) (1958), film semi-autobiographique où il prête sa voix à celle du narrateur. Et en 1948 en plein maccarthysme, il tourna un film anticommuniste, Le Rideau de fer, dont il ne voulut plus entendre parler.

Quelques jours avant sa mort, il confiait à son fils avoir vécu « la vie de cent hommes ».

Surnommé « Wild Bill » à Hollywood autant en raison de son engagement durant la Grande Guerre que pour son comportement et ses exigences sur un tournage, Wellman était un cinéaste avant tout soucieux de réalisme.

Best films

A Star Is Born (2018)
(Story)
A Star Is Born (1976)
(Story)
The High and the Mighty (1954)
(Director)
Battleground (1949)
(Director)
The Public Enemy (1931)
(Director)
Wings (1927)
(Director)

Usually with

George Chandler
George Chandler
(19 films)
Edith Head
Edith Head
(7 films)
Bob Perry
Bob Perry
(6 films)
John Wayne
John Wayne
(8 films)
Source : Wikidata

Filmography of William A. Wellman (89 films)

Display filmography as list

Actor

Lafayette Escadrille, 1h33
Directed by William A. Wellman
Origin USA
Genres Drama, War, Romance
Themes French war films, Films about sexuality, Transport films, Erotic films, Films about prostitution, Aviation films, Political films, Erotic thriller films
Actors Tab Hunter, David Janssen, Will Hutchins, Etchika Choureau, Paul Fix, Marcel Dalio
Roles le narrateur
Rating57% 2.8544152.8544152.8544152.8544152.854415
Thad Walker (Tab Hunter), a spoiled, rich kid from Boston, who had gotten in serious trouble with the law, fled to France to join the French Foreign Legion in World War I. In Paris, with companions, "Duke" Sinclair (David Janssen), Dave Putnam (Will Hutchins), Tom Hitchcock (Jody McCrea) and Bill Wellman (William Wellman Jr.), the boys stop at a bar and learn of the recent formation of the Lafayette Escadrille made up of American volunteer pilots who fly for France. The group of expatriates join up and learn to fly on training aircraft before becoming combat pilots.
Island in the Sky, 1h49
Directed by William A. Wellman
Origin USA
Genres Drama, Action, Adventure
Themes Transport films, Aviation films, Disaster films, American disaster films, Films about aviation accidents or incidents, United States Armed Forces in films
Actors John Wayne, Lloyd Nolan, James Arness, Andy Devine, Harry Carey, Jr., Walter Abel
Roles Narrator (voice) (uncredited)
Rating68% 3.4458653.4458653.4458653.4458653.445865
The film follows a pilot and crew of a World War II-era Douglas C-47 Skytrain (the military version of the DC-3) who try to survive after a forced emergency landing in the uncharted wildlands near the Quebec-Labrador border. The pilot, Dooley (John Wayne), is a former airline pilot, who, like many others, was pressed into duty hauling war supplies across the northern route to England. Icy conditions force the aircraft to land, and with the difficulties of navigating far from settled country, they can provide only an approximate position to rescuers.
Frisco Jenny, 1h13
Directed by William A. Wellman
Origin USA
Genres Drama
Themes Films about sexuality, Erotic films, Films about prostitution, Disaster films, Films about earthquakes
Actors Ruth Chatterton, Louis Calhern, Helen Jerome Eddy, Donald Cook, William A. Wellman, Hallam Cooley
Rating68% 3.443843.443843.443843.443843.44384
In 1906 San Francisco, Frisco Jenny Sandoval (Ruth Chatterton), a denizen of the notorious Tenderloin district, wants to marry piano player Dan McAllister (James Murray), but her saloonkeeper father Jim (Robert Emmett O'Connor) is adamantly opposed to it. An earthquake kills both men and devastates the city. In the aftermath, Jenny gives birth to a son, whom she names Dan.
Wings
Wings (1927)
, 2h19
Directed by William A. Wellman, Harry d'Abbadie d'Arrast
Origin USA
Genres Drama, War, Action, Romance
Themes Transport films, Aviation films, Political films, Disaster films, Films about aviation accidents or incidents
Actors Clara Bow, Buddy Rogers, Richard Arlen, Gary Cooper, Jobyna Ralston, El Brendel
Roles Doughboy (uncredited)
Rating74% 3.747773.747773.747773.747773.74777
Jack Powell and David Armstrong are rivals in the same small American town, both vying for the attentions of pretty Sylvia Lewis. Jack fails to realize that "the girl next door", Mary Preston, is desperately in love with him. The two young men both enlist to become combat pilots in the Air Service. When they leave for training camp, Jack mistakenly believes Sylvia prefers him. She actually prefers David and lets him know about her feelings, but is too kindhearted to turn down Jack's affection.
Evangeline
Evangeline (1919)

Directed by Raoul Walsh
Origin USA
Genres Drama
Themes Poésie, Adaptation d'un poème, Children's films
Actors Miriam Cooper, Alan Roscoe, Spottiswoode Aitken, James A. Marcus, James Marcus, Paul Weigel
Roles A British Lieutenant

Un père lit à sa fille et à son fiancé, qui viennent de se quereller, le poème de Longfellow « Evangéline ».
The Knickerbocker Buckaroo, 1h
Directed by Arthur Rosson, Albert Parker
Origin USA
Genres Romantic comedy, Western
Actors Douglas Fairbanks, Marjorie Daw, Marjorie Daw, William A. Wellman, Frank Campeau, Edythe Chapman
Roles Henry

Fairbanks plays a hedonistic New York City aristocrat who tries to change his selfish ways by heading to Sonora, Texas to carry out a campaign of altruism. Along the way, he is mistaken for a Mexican bandit and is pursued by a corrupt sheriff who is in pursuit of the bandit's hidden fortune.

Director

Darby's Rangers, 2h1
Directed by William A. Wellman
Origin USA
Genres Drama, War, Action
Themes Political films
Actors James Garner, Jack Warden, Stuart Whitman, Etchika Choureau, Edd Byrnes, Venetia Stevenson
Rating63% 3.1990553.1990553.1990553.1990553.199055
The US Army has decided to form an elite strike force similar to the British Commandos. Major William Darby (James Garner), a staff officer, gets command of the 1st Ranger Battalion, to be formed entirely from volunteers.On June 19, 1942 the 1st Ranger Battalion was sanctioned, recruited, and began training in Carrickfergus, Northern Ireland. Darby and Master Sergeant Saul Rosen (Jack Warden), who also narrates the film, select a variety of men for training in Scotland by British Commando veterans. Darby tells his men that the Commandos are the best soldiers in the world, but in time they (the Rangers) will be. The Americans are quartered in Scottish homes and several of the Rangers pair off with local lassies: Rollo Burns (Peter Brown) with Peggy McTavish (Venetia Stevenson), the daughter of the fearsome but humorous Scottish Commando instructor, Sergeant McTavish (Torin Thatcher), and vagabond Hank Bishop (Stuart Whitman) with the proper Wendy Hollister (Joan Elan).
Lafayette Escadrille, 1h33
Directed by William A. Wellman
Origin USA
Genres Drama, War, Romance
Themes French war films, Films about sexuality, Transport films, Erotic films, Films about prostitution, Aviation films, Political films, Erotic thriller films
Actors Tab Hunter, David Janssen, Will Hutchins, Etchika Choureau, Paul Fix, Marcel Dalio
Rating57% 2.8544152.8544152.8544152.8544152.854415
Thad Walker (Tab Hunter), a spoiled, rich kid from Boston, who had gotten in serious trouble with the law, fled to France to join the French Foreign Legion in World War I. In Paris, with companions, "Duke" Sinclair (David Janssen), Dave Putnam (Will Hutchins), Tom Hitchcock (Jody McCrea) and Bill Wellman (William Wellman Jr.), the boys stop at a bar and learn of the recent formation of the Lafayette Escadrille made up of American volunteer pilots who fly for France. The group of expatriates join up and learn to fly on training aircraft before becoming combat pilots.
Good-bye, My Lady, 1h34
Directed by William A. Wellman
Origin USA
Genres Drama
Themes Films about animals, Films about children, Films about dogs
Actors Walter Brennan, Brandon deWilde, William Hopper, Sidney Poitier, Louise Beavers, Phil Harris
Rating72% 3.639833.639833.639833.639833.63983
Young orphan boy Skeeter (Brandon deWilde) is being raised in a Mississippi swamp cabin by his poor and toothless Uncle Jesse Jackson (Walter Brennan). One night, a mysterious noise is heard. They later discover that the noise was caused by a strange breed of dog (My Lady of the Congo) they do not recognize. Rather than a bark, the dog has a yodel or laugh. The animal has keen senses, and they decide to train her for bird hunting.
Blood Alley, 1h55
Directed by William A. Wellman
Origin USA
Genres Drama, Thriller, Action, Adventure
Themes Seafaring films, Transport films, Political films
Actors John Wayne, Lauren Bacall, Paul Fix, Anita Ekberg, Mike Mazurki, James Hong
Rating62% 3.148443.148443.148443.148443.14844
The ship of Captain Tom Wilder, an American Merchant Mariner, is seized by the Chinese Communists and he is imprisoned by them for two years in the vicinity of Amoy Island. Captain Wilder is helped to escape from prison, dressed as a Soviet officer. The huge Chinese who transports him to Chiku Shan village (Big Han) will not tell him why he has been broken out of prison.
The High and the Mighty, 2h27
Directed by Andrew V. McLaglen, William A. Wellman
Origin USA
Genres Drama, Thriller, Action, Adventure
Themes La fin du monde, Seafaring films, Transport films, Aviation films, Dans un avion, Disaster films, American disaster films, Films about aviation accidents or incidents
Actors John Wayne, Claire Trevor, Laraine Day, Robert Stack, Jan Sterling, Phil Harris
Rating67% 3.3970553.3970553.3970553.3970553.397055
In Honolulu, a DC-4 airliner prepares to take off for San Francisco with 17 passengers and a crew of 5. Former captain Dan Roman (John Wayne), the flight's veteran first officer known for his habit of whistling, is haunted by a crash that killed his wife and son and left him with a permanent limp. The captain, Sullivan (Robert Stack), suffers from a secret fear of responsibility after logging thousands of hours looking after the lives of passengers and crew. Young second officer Hobie Wheeler (William Campbell) and veteran navigator Lenny Wilby (Wally Brown) are contrasts in age and experience. Stewardess Spalding (Doe Avedon) attends her passengers, each with varying personal problems, including jaded former actress May Holst (Claire Trevor), unhappily married heiress Lydia Rice (Laraine Day), aging beauty queen Sally McKee (Jan Sterling) and cheerful vacationer Ed Joseph (Phil Harris). Spalding befriends the terminally ill Frank Briscoe (Paul Fix) after being charmed by his pocket watch. A last-minute arrival, Humphrey Agnew (Sidney Blackmer), causes the crew concern with his strange behavior.
Ring of Fear, 1h33
Directed by William A. Wellman, James Edward Grant
Origin USA
Genres Drama, Adventure
Themes Circus films
Actors Clyde Beatty, Pat O'Brien, Sean McClory, John Bromfield, Pedro Gonzalez-Gonzalez, Emmett Lynn
Rating53% 2.6676452.6676452.6676452.6676452.667645
Dublin O'Malley, un ancien artiste de cirque aigri, revient sur les lieux de son ancien travail afin de se venger de son employeur et d'une femme. Les crimes et les accidents qu'il commet, déguisés en accident, inquiètent le personnel qui commence à croire le cirque hanté. Le directeur, Clyde Beatty, fait alors appel à Mickey Spillane pour résoudre l'énigme. Spillane ne tarde pas à découvrir le véritable auteur de ces méfaits...
Track of the Cat, 1h42
Directed by William A. Wellman
Origin USA
Genres Drama, Action, Western
Actors Robert Mitchum, Teresa Wright, Diana Lynn, Tab Hunter, Philip Tonge, Beulah Bondi
Rating64% 3.2452053.2452053.2452053.2452053.245205
The squabbling Bridges family spends a harsh winter on their remote ranch in northern California in the early years of the 20th century. Crude and quarrelsome middle brother Curt (Robert Mitchum) bullies his noble, unselfish eldest brother Arthur (William Hopper), while youngest brother Harold (Tab Hunter) endures Curt’s abuse in browbeaten silence. Their mother (Beulah Bondi) is a bigoted religious zealot and their father (Philip Tonge) is a loquacious, self-pitying drunk. Bitter old maid sister Grace (Teresa Wright) is temporarily gladdened by the arrival of Harold’s fiancé, spirited Gwen (Diana Lynn).
Island in the Sky, 1h49
Directed by William A. Wellman
Origin USA
Genres Drama, Action, Adventure
Themes Transport films, Aviation films, Disaster films, American disaster films, Films about aviation accidents or incidents, United States Armed Forces in films
Actors John Wayne, Lloyd Nolan, James Arness, Andy Devine, Harry Carey, Jr., Walter Abel
Rating68% 3.4458653.4458653.4458653.4458653.445865
The film follows a pilot and crew of a World War II-era Douglas C-47 Skytrain (the military version of the DC-3) who try to survive after a forced emergency landing in the uncharted wildlands near the Quebec-Labrador border. The pilot, Dooley (John Wayne), is a former airline pilot, who, like many others, was pressed into duty hauling war supplies across the northern route to England. Icy conditions force the aircraft to land, and with the difficulties of navigating far from settled country, they can provide only an approximate position to rescuers.
My Man and I, 1h39
Directed by William A. Wellman
Origin USA
Genres Drama
Actors Shelley Winters, Ricardo Montalbán, Juan Torena, Wendell Corey, Claire Trevor, Robert Burton
Rating62% 3.148683.148683.148683.148683.14868
Chu Chu Ramirez (Ricardo Montalban), a farm laborer from Mexico who works as a grape picker in California, has recently become an American citizen and is determined to better himself. While his cousin Manuel and his friends Celestino and Willie spend their pay on gambling and women, Chu Chu buys new clothes and an encyclopedia. When grape season ends, Chu Chu takes a job clearing land for Ansel Ames (Wendell Corey) on Ames' farm near Sacramento. Ames and his wife (Claire Trevor) are having marital problems and the lonely Mrs. Ames, who initially regards Chu Chu with contempt as a "foreigner", becomes attracted to Chu Chu over time. Chu Chu is friendly and kind to her, but does not return her affections and rejects her attempt to seduce him. Instead, Chu Chu is drawn to Nancy (Shelley Winters), a troubled waitress with a drinking problem whose former husband, a test pilot, was killed in a crash. Chu Chu puts up his prized possession, a letter from President Franklin D. Roosevelt, to get money for Nancy, and asks her to be his girl, although she protests that he shouldn't waste his time on a "wino" like herself.