We’re pleased to offer up a blog post from our Programming Committee member, Glen Haley. He’s been working hard to write introductions to each of our Gone But Not Forgotten series films.
The Cary is proud to present a four-film series in November celebrating the work of artists who passed away in 2016. Our third film is “Love Story,” a romantic drama directed by Arthur Hiller.
Arthur Hiller was a versatile, go-to director of comedies and dramas, many of which were big hits in the 1970s and 1980s.
Born and raised in Canada, Hiller started off like many of his contemporaries, honing his craft on television during the late 1950s and 1960s. In all, he directed over 100 television episodes of such shows as “Gunsmoke,” “Alfred Hitchcock Presents,” “Perry Mason,” and “The Addams Family.”
While he never developed a signature style, he specialized in character-based comedies and dramas. His early film work gave him the opportunity to work with strong writers, including Neil Simon (Plaza Suite), William Peter Blatty (Promise Her Anything), and Paddy Chayefsky (The Hospital). He had his share of hits and misses over his career, but worked with some of Hollywood’s top actors, five of whom received Oscar nominations in his films.
His best films focused on bringing together mismatched characters in fish-out-of-water scenarios or labyrinthine plots. Has anyone ever seen “The In-Laws” and not loved it? Released in 1979, the film is a comedy classic, with odd-couple dentist Alan Arkin and government agent Peter Falk chasing U.S. currency plates across New York City and South America, all while trying to get back for their kids’ wedding. Hiller directed other memorable pairings, including Bette Midler/Shelley Long (“Outrageous Fortune), Jack Lemmon/Sandy Dennis (“The Out of Towners”) and Gene Wilder/Richard Pryor (“Silver Streak,” “See No Evil Hear No Evil”).
His most successful film — critically and commercially — was “Love Story,” starring Ryan O’Neal and Ali MacGraw. The movie was adapted from a hugely popular novel at the time and focused on two Ivy League college student who fall in love and must overcome health and family issues. A smash hit on its release in 1970, “Love Story” grossed an unheard-of $100 million at the box office and was nominated for multiple Oscars, among them Best Picture, Director, Screenplay, Actor, and Actress (it won for Best Music).
By the early 1990s, Hiller turned his attention to Hollywood advocacy, serving as president for both the Directors Guild of America and Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. He passed away on August 17, 2016 of natural causes. He was 93.
MOVIE TAGLINE MATCH-UP
Arthur Hiller’s film posters have some great taglines. Match them with the correct movie!
1. “The FIRST Certified Crazy Person’s Comedy”
2. “Love Means Never Having to Say You’re Sorry”
3. “Watch Them Operate”
4. “There Was Only One”
5. “The First Drop Dead Comedy of the Summer”
6. “They Share the Laughter, the Love, the Frustration… And the Bathroom.”
A. See No Evil Hear No Evil
B. The Hospital
C. Author! Author!
D. The In-Laws
E. Love Story
F. The Babe
Next on the Gone But Not Forgotten series is LA Confidential featuring the work of Curtis Hanson on Sunday, November 29 at 2 p.m.
Answers: 1-D, 2-E, 3-B, 4-F, 5-A, 6-C