Steve McQueen: The Essence of Cool (2005)

TV Movie  |  TV-MA  |   |  Documentary  |  1 June 2005 (USA)
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The life and times of actor Steve McQueen, on the 75th anniversary of his birth



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Himself - Interviewee (archive footage)
Himself - Interviewee
Neile Adams ...
Herself - Interviewee
Herself - Interviewee
Himself - Interviewee
Himself (as Hilly Elkins)
Himself - Interviewee
Himself - Interviewee
Robert E. Relyea ...
Himself - Interviewee (as Robert Relyea)
Himself - Interviewee
Walter Mirisch ...
Himself - Interviewee
Himself - Interviewee
Himself - Interviewee
Himself - Interviewee (as Lord Richard Attenborough)
Himself - Interviewee


Friends, co-stars and admirers of actor Steve McQueen - including first wife, actress and dancer Neile Adams, and third wife, model Barbara Minty - discuss his life in relation to his movie career. His screen persona was one where women loved him, in part because of his piercing blue eyes, and men both wanted to emulate him and be his buddy. Despite having screen presence even in early bit parts, he didn't start to hone his craft of acting until he was accepted into the Actor's Studio. In what some consider his breakthrough movie, he took the sure thing of a meager paycheck instead of taking a percentage of the movie's profits, as he thought the movie would be a commercial flop. That movie was The Blob (1958). Although he made a name as the rebel loner and an action hero in the television show Wanted: Dead or Alive (1958) and smaller parts in movies such as The Magnificent Seven (1960), his status as such, but in a movie starring capacity, was solidified with The Great Escape (1963), ... Written by Huggo

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Release Date:

1 June 2005 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Steve McQueen - Leidenschaftlich cool  »

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Did You Know?


This documentary is featured on the Two-Disc Special Edition DVD for Bullitt (1968), released in 2005. See more »

Crazy Credits

All interviewees are identified by on-screen graphics. Steve McQueen is identified by interviewees. Stunt driver Bill Hickman is identified by director Peter Yates. See more »


References Trackdown (1957) See more »

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User Reviews

Loved the documentary
26 February 2007 | by (Australia) – See all my reviews

Loved the documentary "Essence of Cool". I'd seen Steve McQueen in a few movies as a younger person but now, older with a slightly different outlook to "back then" I realized what a man Steve was as an actor. Every (mature aged) woman loves a dare devil!

Most interesting were the cool motor cycles Steve rode. And I loved how he taught his kids to ride. What a Dad!

I now want to go rent all his old movies - asap.From humble beginnings came a focused, risk taking, talented individual. Well done to the producers and to all the contributors of this great documentary. They captured the man, especially his "Essence of Cool".

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