Greatest Producers

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1.
“ Greats: The Stranger (1946); The African Queen (1951); On the Waterfront (1954); The Bridge on the River Kwai (1957); Suddenly, Last Summer (1959); Lawrence of Arabia (1962)

Other Notable Production(s): ” - phbasketball6
 
2.
“ Greats: Jaws (1975); The Verdict (1982); Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (2007)

Give It a Shot: Driving Miss Daisy (1989)

Flops: Reign of Fire (2002)

Other Notable Film(s): Rules of Engagement (2000); Planet of the Apes (2001); Road to Perdition (2002); Driving Miss Daisy (2003); Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (2005); Yes Man (2008); Alice in Wonderland (2010); Dark Shadows (2012) ” - phbasketball6
 
3.
Graham King
Producer, The Departed
Graham King (Producer) has emerged as a formidable producer of both major motion pictures and independent features. At the 2007 Academy Awards King won a Best Picture Oscar for the ensemble crime thriller "The Departed." A winner of four Academy Awards including Best Director and Best Adapted Screenplay...
“ Greats: The Aviator (2004); The Departed (2006)

Other Notable Film(s): ” - phbasketball6
 
4.
“ Greats: ” - phbasketball6
 
5.
Saul Zaentz
Saul Zaentz learned gambling as a youth in Passaic, New Jersey, playing a card game called briscola. Later, in his twenties, he earned a full-time living as a gambler. Saul settled in San Francisco after WWII, at first working for a local record distributor and eventually joining the jazz record label Fantasy Records...
“ Greats: One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975); Amadeus (1984); The English Patient (1996) ” - phbasketball6
 
6.
Stanley Kubrick
Director, The Shining
Stanley Kubrick was born in Manhattan, New York City, to Sadie Gertrude (Perveler) and Jacob Leonard Kubrick, a physician. His family were Jewish immigrants (from Austria, Romania, and Russia). Stanley was considered intelligent, despite poor grades at school. Hoping that a change of scenery would produce better academic performance...
“ Greats: ” - phbasketball6
 
7.
“ Greats: Rocky (1976); Raging Bull (1980); Goodfellas (1990)

Caution: Rocky IV (1985); Rocky V (1990); Guilty by Suspicion (1991)

Other Notable Film(s): The Right Stuff (1983) ” - phbasketball6
 
8.
Ingmar Bergman
Ernst Ingmar Bergman was born July fourteenth, 1918, the son of a priest. The film and T.V. series, The Best Intentions is biographical and shows the early marriage of his parents. The film 'Söndagsbarn' depicts a bicycle journey with his father. In the miniseries Private Confessions is the trilogy closed. Here...
 
10.
“ Representing the Coen Brothers

Greats: Fargo (1996); No Country for Old Men (2007)

Give It a Shot: O Brother, Where Art Thou?; True Grit (2010)

Caution:

Other Notable Film(s): ” - phbasketball6
 
11.
Robert Altman
Director, Gosford Park
Robert Altman was born on February 20th, 1925 in Kansas City, Missouri, to B.C. (an insurance salesman) and Helen Altman. He entered St. Peters Catholic school at the age six, and spent a short time at a Catholic high school. From there, he went to Rockhurst High School. It was then that he started exploring the art of exploring sound with the cheap tape recorders available at the time...
 
12.
Peter Jackson
Peter Jackson was born as an only child in a small coast-side town in New Zealand in 1961. When a friend of his parents bought him a super 8 movie camera (because she saw how much he enjoyed taking photos), the then eight-year-old Peter instantly grabbed the thing to start recording his own movies, which he made with his friends...
 
13.
James Cameron
Writer, Aliens
James Francis Cameron was born on August 16, 1954 in Kapuskasing, Ontario, Canada. He moved to the United States in 1971. The son of an engineer, he majored in physics at California State University but, after graduating, drove a truck to support his screenwriting ambition. He landed his first professional film job as art director...
“ Greats: Titanic (1997); Avatar (2009) ” - phbasketball6
 
14.
Clint Eastwood
Perhaps the icon of macho movie stars, and a living legend, Clint Eastwood has become a standard in international cinema. Born May 31, 1930 in San Francisco, the elder of two children in a middle-class family, Eastwood finished high school at the comparatively late age of nineteen and worked odd jobs over a period of several years before enrolling at Los Angeles City College...
“ Greats: Unforgiven; Million Dollar Baby (2004) ” - phbasketball6
 
15.
Steven Spielberg
Undoubtedly one of the most influential film personalities in the history of film, Steven Spielberg is perhaps Hollywood's best known director and one of the wealthiest filmmakers in the world. Spielberg has countless big-grossing, critically acclaimed credits to his name, as producer, director and writer...
 
18.
Sydney Pollack
Director, Tootsie
Sydney Pollack was an Academy Award-winning director, producer, actor, writer and public figure, who directed and produced over 40 films. Sydney Irwin Pollack was born July 1, 1934 in Lafayette, Indiana, USA, to Rebecca (Miller), a homemaker, and David Pollack, a professional boxer turned pharmacist...
 
19.
Francis Ford Coppola
Francis Ford Coppola was born in 1939 in Detroit, Michigan, but grew up in a New York suburb in a creative, supportive Italian-American family. His father, Carmine Coppola, was a composer and musician. His mother, Italia Coppola (née Pennino), had been an actress. Francis Ford Coppola graduated with a degree in drama from Hofstra University...
 
20.
Anthony Minghella
Anthony Minghella was the son of immigrants from Italy, who own an ice-cream factory on the Isle of Wight, where Anthony was born on January 6, 1954. He and his two siblings, Edana Minghella and Dominic Minghella, grew up there, a popular British holiday spot. After graduating from the University of Hull...
 
23.
Warren Beatty
Since starring in his first film, Splendor in the Grass, Warren Beatty has been said to have demonstrated a greater longevity in movies than any actor of his generation. Few people have taken so many responsibilities for all phases of the production of films as producer, director, writer, and actor, and few have evidenced so high a level of integrity in a body of work...
 
24.
“ Greats: Pulp Fiction (1994) ” - phbasketball6
 
26.
Ron Howard
Academy Award-winning filmmaker Ron Howard is one of this generation's most popular directors. From the critically acclaimed dramas A Beautiful Mind and Apollo 13 to the hit comedies Parenthood and Splash, he has created some of Hollywood's most memorable films. Howard directed and produced "Cinderella Man" starring Oscar winner Russell Crowe...
 
27.
Michael Mann
Producer, Heat
A student of London's International Film School, Michael Mann began his career in the late 70s, writing for TV shows like Starsky and Hutch. He directed his first film, the award-winning prison drama The Jericho Mile, in 1979. He followed that in 1981 with his first theatrical release, Thief starring James Caan as a safe-cracker who falls under the spell of the mob...
 
29.
Brian Grazer
Producer, 24
Academy Award-winning producer Brian Grazer has been making movies and television programs for more than 25 years. As both a writer and producer, he has been personally nominated for four Academy Awards, and in 2002 won the Best Picture Oscar for A Beautiful Mind. In addition to winning three other Academy Awards...
 
30.
Norman Jewison
Producer, The Hurricane
Norman Frederick Jewison was born in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, to Dorothy Irene (Weaver) and Percy Joseph Jewison, who managed a post office and a convenience store. His mother was an English immigrant, and his father was of English and Ulster-Scots descent. Jewison got his BA at Victoria College, University of Toronto...
 
31.
Darryl F. Zanuck
Producer, All About Eve
One of the kingpins of Hollywood's studio system, Zanuck was the offspring of the ill-fated marriage of the alcoholic night clerk in Wahoo, Nebraska's only hotel and the hotel owner's daughter. Both parents had abandoned him by the time he was 13. At 15, he joined the U.S. Army, and he fought in Belgium in World War I...
 
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33.
John Boorman
Producer, Excalibur
John Boorman attended Catholic school (Salesian Order) although his family was not, in fact, Roman Catholic. His first job was for a dry-cleaner. Later, he worked as a critic for a women's journal and for a radio station until he entered the television business, working for the BBC in Bristol. There...
 
34.
Peter Yates
Director, Bullitt
Having seen Robbery and Bullitt, it comes as no surprise that Peter Yates started out as a professional racing car driver and team manager - albeit briefly - before turning his attention to film. The son of a military man, he was educated at Charterhouse School and trained at RADA, gaining his first experience as an actor with local repertory companies...
 
35.
Hal B. Wallis
Producer, Casablanca
Legendary producer Hal B. Wallis was born in Chicago and moved to Los Angeles when he was in his early 20s. He got a job managing a theater owned by Warner Bros., and his success at the job caught the eye of studio head Jack L. Warner, who gave him a job in the studio's publicity department. Within a few months Wallis had worked his way up to head of the department...
 
36.
Irving Thalberg
Thalberg was born in New York City of German immigrant parents. He had a bad heart, having contracted rheumatic fever as a teenager and was plagued with other ailments all of his life. He was quite intelligent with a thirst for knowledge but, convinced that he would never see thirty, he skipped college and became...
 
37.
David O. Selznick
David O. Selznick was a son of the silent movie producer Lewis J. Selznick. David studied at Columbia University until his father lost his fortune in the 1920s. David started work as an MGM script reader, shortly followed by becoming an assistant to Harry Rapf. He left MGM to work at Paramount then RKO...
 
38.
Alfred Hitchcock
Director, Psycho
Alfred Joseph Hitchcock was born in Leytonstone, Essex, England. He was the son of Emma Jane (Whelan; 1863 - 1942) and East End greengrocer William Hitchcock (1862 - 1914). His parents were both of half English and half Irish ancestry. He had two older siblings, William Hitchcock (born 1890) and Eileen Hitchcock (born 1892)...
 
39.
Samuel Goldwyn
Famed for his relentless ambition, bad temper and genius for publicity, Samuel Goldwyn became Hollywood's leading "independent" producer -- largely because none of his partners could tolerate him for long. Born Shmuel (or Schmuel) Gelbfisz, probably in 1879, in the Jewish section of Warsaw, he was the eldest of six children of a struggling used-furniture dealer...
 
40.
Albert R. Broccoli
Producer, Goldfinger
Albert Romolo Broccoli was born in Astoria, Queens (New York City) on April 5th, 1909. His mother and father, Cristina and Giovanni Broccoli, raised young Albert in New York on the family farm. The family was in the vegetable business, and Albert claimed one of his uncles brought the first broccoli seeds into the United States in the 1870's...
 
41.
Val Lewton
Born in Russia in 1904, Lewton moved with his mother and sister to Berlin in 1906, then to USA in 1909. He wrote for newspapers, magazines, novels, pornography, etc.- often using pseudonyms to disguise their origin (the name Val Lewton was one such pseudonym, used first for some novels in the 1930's...
 
42.
David Brown
Producer, Jaws
 
43.
Robert Evans
Raised on Manhattan's Upper West Side (his father was a dentist with a thriving practice in Harlem), Evans began his show-business career as a teenage radio act or. After flopping in his first attempt at movie acting, he took a job promoting sales of ladies' slacks for Evan-Picone, the clothing company founded and run by his brother...
 
44.
Preston Sturges
Preston Sturges' own life is as unlikely as some of the plots of his best work. He was born into a wealthy family. As a boy he helped out on stage productions for his mother's friend, Isadora Duncan (the scarf that strangled her was made by his mother's company, Maison Desti). He served in the U.S...
 
45.
Oliver Stone
Director, Platoon
Oliver Stone has become known as a master of controversial subjects and a legendary film maker. His films are filled with a variety of film angles and styles, he pushes his actors to give Oscar-worthy performances, and despite his failures, has always returned to success. William Oliver Stone was born in New York City...
 
46.
Alejandro G. Iñárritu
Producer, The Revenant
Alejandro González Iñárritu (ih-nyar-ee-too), born August 15th, 1963, is a Mexican film director. González Iñárritu is the first Mexican director to be nominated for the Academy Award for Best Director and by the Directors Guild of America for Best Director. He is also the first Mexican-born director to have won the Prix de la mise en scene or best director award at Cannes (2006)...
 
47.
Paul Haggis
Writer, Crash
Paul Haggis is the award-winning filmmaker who, in 2006, became the first screenwriter to write two Best Film Oscar winners back-to-back - Million Dollar Baby directed by Clint Eastwood, and Crash which he himself directed. For Crash, he won Academy Awards for Best Picture and Best Original Screenplay...
 
48.
Gary Ross
Gary Ross is an American writer, director and actor born November 3rd, 1956 in Los Angeles, California. His father was screenwriter Arthur A. Ross (1920 - 2008). After writing for television series The Hitchhiker in 1986, Ross broke through by penning the Tom Hanks hit Big, his first screenplay to be made into a feature film...
 
49.
Edward Zwick
Edward Zwick is well-known for his heroic movies that include Glory, and the breathtaking works of art that include Legends of the Fall. Zwick has also been known for his thoughtfulness as a director, and for his record of working with television series and other films as a producer. Born in 1952...
 
50.
Jon Landau
Producer, Titanic
 
52.
Ernest Lehman
One of the most critically and commercially successful screenwriters in Hollywood history, Lehman grew up on Long Island, graduated from NY's City College. One of his first jobs was as a copywriter for a Broadway publicist. This experience would later be reflected in his novel and screenplay, "Sweet Smell of Success." He also worked as a radio comedy writer...
 
53.
Robert Wise
Robert Earl Wise was born on September 10, 1914 in Winchester, Indiana, the youngest of three sons of Olive R. (Longenecker) and Earl Waldo Wise, a meat packer. His parents were both of Pennsylvania Dutch (German) descent. At age nineteen, the avid moviegoer came into the film business through an odd job at RKO Radio Pictures...
 
54.
Fred Zinnemann
Director, High Noon
Initially grew up wanting to be a violinist, but while at the University of Vienna decided to study law. While doing so, he became increasingly interested in American film and decided that was what he wanted to do. He became involved in European filmaking for a short time before going to America to study film.
 
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56.
Jack L. Warner
Producer, Casablanca
With his brothers Harry M. Warner, Albert Warner, and Sam Warner, he founded Warner Bros. Pictures Inc. in 1923. They released the first motion picture with synchronized sound, The Jazz Singer with Al Jolson. In the 1930s they gave employment to a parade of stars, including Bette Davis...
 
57.
Walt Disney
Walter Elias Disney was born on December 5, 1901 in Chicago, Illinois, the son of Flora Disney (née Call) and Elias Disney, a Canadian-born farmer and businessperson. He had Irish, German, and English ancestry. Walt moved with his parents to Kansas City at age seven, where he spent the majority of his childhood...
 
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62.
Joshua Logan
Joshua Logan started directing plays while he was still at Princeton and among the first actors he directed were Henry Fonda and James Stewart. His graduation from Princeton was delayed to accompany a classmate to Russia to study with Konstantin Stanislavski, inventor of "method acting". Stanislavsko told him...
 
63.
Billy Wilder
The second of two sons, his father ran a chain of railway station cafes. As a youth he was obsessed with everything American. encouraged by his mother he enrolled as a law student at the University of Vienna but quit after 3 months to be a writer on a magazine which although poorly paid it gave him a great amount of experience interviewing such as Richard Strauss and Sigmund Freud...
 
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65.
George Stevens
Director, Giant
George Stevens, a filmmaker known as a meticulous craftsman with a brilliant eye for composition and a sensitive touch with actors, is one of the great American filmmakers, ranking with John Ford, William Wyler and Howard Hawks as a creator of classic Hollywood cinema, bringing to the screen mytho-poetic worlds that were also mass entertainment...
 
66.
Otto Preminger
Otto Ludwig Preminger was born in Wiznitz, Bukovina, Austria-Hungary. His father was a prosecutor, and Otto originally intended to follow his father into a law career; however, he fell in love with the theater and became a stage director. He directed his first film in 1931, and came to the US in 1936 to direct on the Broadway stage...
 
67.
Cecil B. DeMille
His parents Henry C. DeMille and Beatrice DeMille were playwrights. His father died when he was 12, and his mother supported the family by opening a school for girls and a theatrical company. Too young to enlist in the Spanish-American War, Cecil followed his brother William C. de Mille to the New York Academy of Dramatic Arts...
 
68.
Dino De Laurentiis
Producer, Red Dragon
Agostino "Dino" De Laurentiis was born on August 8, 1919 in Torre Annunziata, Campania, Italy. He spent his childhood selling spaghetti that his father made. But he caught his interest on one big thing: making movies. De Laurentiis left his home at the age of 17 to enroll for film studies at the Centro Sperimentale di Cinematografia...
 
69.
William Wyler
Director, Ben-Hur
William Wyler was an American filmmaker who, at the time of his death in 1981, was considered by his peers as second only to John Ford as a master craftsman of cinema. The winner of three Best Director Academy Awards, second again only to Ford's four, Wyler's reputation has unfairly suffered as...
 
70.
Michael Todd
Film producer Michael Todd was one of the major contributors to technical innovation in the film industry in the 1950s. Having worked with Fred Waller and Cinerama, he got tired of the three-panel format, left the company and tried to find the process for making "Cinerama coming from one hole". He joined forces with the American Optical Co...
 
71.
Buddy Adler
While known mostly for his activities as a film producer, Maurice Buddy Adler attended both Columbia and Pennsylvania universities and wrote fiction short stories for magazines prior to becoming involved in the film industry. In 1936 he joined MGM Pictures as a writer for the regular series of short subjects that were popular at the time...
 
72.
John Huston
An eccentric rebel of epic proportions, this Hollywood titan reigned supreme as director, screenwriter and character actor in a career that endured over five decades. The ten-time Oscar-nominated legend was born John Marcellus Huston in Nevada, Missouri, on August 5, 1906. His ancestry included English...
 
73.
John Ford
Director, The Searchers
John Ford is, arguably, The Great American Director. When Orson Welles, who repeatedly screened Ford's Stagecoach as a crash course in filmmaking before helming his first film, Citizen Kane, was asked who his three favorite directors were, he answered, "John Ford, John Ford, and John Ford." Along with D.W. Griffith and Cecil B. DeMille...
 
74.
Merian C. Cooper
Thanks, King Kong
In 1920, Merian C. Cooper was a member of volunteer of the American Kosciuszko Squadron that supported the Polish army in the war with Soviet Russia, where he met best friend and producing partner Ernest B. Schoedsack. On 26 July 1920, his plane was shot down, and he spent nearly nine months in the Soviet prisoner-of-war camp...
 
75.
Arthur Freed
Producer, songwriter and author, brother to Ralph Freed, Walter and Ruth Freed. He was educated at the Phillips Exeter Academy, and became associated with Gus Edwards musical acts. He performed in vaudeville with Louis Silvers, with whom he wrote revues for New York restaurants. During World War I...
 
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77.
Charles Brackett
Writer, Sunset Blvd.
Charles Brackett, born in Saratoga Springs, New York, of Scottish ancestry, followed in his attorney-father's footsteps and graduated with a law degree from Harvard University in 1920. He practised law for several years, before commencing work as drama critic for The New Yorker (1925-29), in addition to submitting short stories to The Saturday Evening Post...
 
78.
Sol C. Siegel
Sol was father of Bernie Siegel, a guru physician/author who promoted his book which reaped profit by attracting dying cancer patients. Bernie knew all the right moves as he gained popularity by shaving his head to join his cancer patients. Hollywood-style publicity pays off? Some of Bernies children tried to get in on it via modalities such as clown therapy.
 
79.
Roger Corman
Producer, Death Race
Roger William Corman was born April 5, 1926, in Detroit, Michigan. Initially following in his father's footsteps, Corman studied engineering at Stanford University but while in school, he began to lose interest in the profession and developed a growing passion for film. Upon graduation, he worked a total of three days as an engineer at US Electrical Motors...
 
80.
Hal Roach
Hal Roach was born in 1892 in Elmira, New York. After working as a mule skinner, wrangler and gold prospector, among other things, he wound up in Hollywood and began picking up jobs as an extra in comedies, where he met comedian Harold Lloyd in 1913 in San Diego. By all accounts, including his own...
 
81.
Mack Sennett
Mack Sennett was born Michael Sinnott on January 17, 1880 in Danville, Quebec, Canada, to Irish immigrant farmers. When he was 17, his parents moved the family to East Berlin, Connecticut, and he became a laborer at American Iron Works, a job he continued when they moved to Northampton, Massachusetts...
 
82.
Charles Chaplin
Writer, Modern Times
Charles Chaplin was an English comic actor, filmmaker, and composer who rose to fame in the silent era. Chaplin became a worldwide icon through his screen persona "the Tramp" and is considered one of the most important figures in the history of the film industry. His career spanned more than 75 years...
 
83.
Buster Keaton
When, at six months, he tumbled down a flight of stairs unharmed, he was given the name "Buster" by Harry Houdini who, along with W.C. Fields, Bill Robinson ("Bojangles"), Eddie Cantor and Al Jolson shared headlines with "The Three Keatons": Buster, his father Joe Keaton and mother Myra Keaton...
 
85.
Dore Schary
Writer, Boys Town
Isadore Schary had a long and checkered history in motion pictures. He was first employed as a screenwriter at then-lowly Columbia after a story editor was struck by the crispness of a writing sample. The editor also happened to think that the writer was a woman, mistaking Dore for Dora. By 1933 he'd...
 
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87.
Bert I. Gordon
Bert I. Gordon, affectionately nicknamed "Mr. B.I.G." by Forrest J. Ackerman, produced, directed, and wrote more than twenty-five Sci/Fi and Horror features, such as The Magic Sword, The Amazing Colossal Man, Village of the Giants, The Cyclops, in addition to comedies such as How to Succeed with Sex. His film, The Food of the Gods, was awarded the Grand Prix du Festival International Du Paris Fantastique 1977.
 
88.
Charles Band
Producer, Blood Dolls
The son of filmmaker Albert Band, Charles Band followed in his father's shoes. After several years as an independent filmmaker, he started Empire Pictures in the mid-'80s. That company collapsed due to the falling Italian currency--the company's studio was headquartered in Italy--Band established Full Moon Pictures...
 
90.
Hayao Miyazaki
Director, Spirited Away
Hayao Miyazaki is one of Japan's greatest animation directors. The entertaining plots, compelling characters, and breathtaking animation in his films have earned him international renown from critics as well as public recognition within Japan. The Walt Disney Company's commitment to introduce the films...
 
91.
Pandro S. Berman
Producer, Top Hat
Pandro S. Berman was born into the film industry. His father, Harry, was distributor and exhibitor of films. Pandro also had a number of relatives in the film industry. When he started working in the 1920's he started as a script clerk and then rose to film editor. By 1931, the 26 year old Berman was an assistant director at RKO when Selznick took over the floundering studio...
 
92.
Mervyn LeRoy
Director, Mister Roberts
The great San Francisco earthquake and fire of 1906 was a tragedy for Mervyn Leroy. While he and his father managed to survive, they lost everything they had. To make money, Leroy sold newspapers and entered talent contests as a singer. When he entered vaudeville, his act was "LeRoy and Cooper--Two Kids and a Piano"...
 
93.
Debra Hill
Producer, Halloween
 
94.
D.W. Griffith
David Wark Griffith was born in rural Kentucky to Jacob "Roaring Jake" Griffith, a former Confederate Army colonel and Civil War hero. Young Griffith grew up with his father's romantic war stories and melodramatic nineteenth-century literature that were to eventually mold his black-and-white view of human existence and history...
 
96.
Joseph L. Mankiewicz
Born in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, on February 11, 1909, Joseph Leo Mankiewicz first worked for the movies as a translator of intertitles, employed by Paramount in Berlin, the UFA's American distributor at the time (1928). He became a dialoguist, then a screenwriter on numerous Paramount productions in Hollywood...
 
97.
Leon Schlesinger
Producer, A Wild Hare
Leon Schlesinger occupies an odd niche in Hollywood history. He was every bit a studio mogul but occupied a narrow, if extremely lucrative corner of the industry, an animation company. He might have shared this corner with Walt Disney but the two men couldn't have been more different in their professional outlook...
 
98.
Douglas Fairbanks
Douglas Fairbanks was born Douglas Elton Thomas Ullman in Denver, Colorado, to Ella Adelaide (Marsh) and Hezekiah Charles Ullman, an attorney. His paternal grandparents were German Jewish immigrants, while his mother was from an Anglo family from the South. He was raised by his mother, who had separated from his father when he was five...
 
99.
Louis B. Mayer
Miscellaneous Crew, Greed
Mayer was born Lazar Mayer in the Ukraine and grew up in Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada after his parents fled Russian oppression in 1886. He had a brutal childhood, raised in poverty and suffering physical and emotional abuse from his nearly-illiterate peddler father. In the early 1890s, he changed his name to Louis and fudged his birth date to reflect the more "patriotic" date of July 4...
 
100.
Mary Pickford
Actress, Coquette
Mary Pickford was born Gladys Louise Smith in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, to Elsie Charlotte (Hennessy) and John Charles Smith. She was of English and Irish descent. Pickford began in the theater at age seven. Then known as "Baby Gladys Smith", she toured with her family in a number of theater companies...