Burt Lancaster: Daring to Reach (15 Mar. 1996)

TV Episode  -   -  Documentary | Biography | History
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Born November 2, 1913, he went from street-wise tough to art-collector liberal-activist, from circus-acrobat hunk to Academy Award winner. Burton Stephen Lancaster - later Burt Lancaster - ... See full summary »

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Title: Burt Lancaster: Daring to Reach (15 Mar 1996)

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Episode credited cast:
James Hill ...
Himself (archive footage)
Delbert Mann ...


Born November 2, 1913, he went from street-wise tough to art-collector liberal-activist, from circus-acrobat hunk to Academy Award winner. Burton Stephen Lancaster - later Burt Lancaster - was one of five children of a New York City postal worker. Burt recalled family life as warm and mutually supportive. At the Union Settlement House, he and boyhood friend Nick Cravat formed an acrobatic team. By eighteen, Burt was 6'2'' and blessed with the athletic physique and dynamic good looks that helped make him famous. A basketball scholarship was not enough to keep him in NYU beyond his sophomore year. That's when he and the 5'2'' Cravat joined a circus, earning $3 weekly between them. A stint in the Army introduced Burt to acting and led him to Hollywood where his first release, The Killers (1946), propelled him to stardom at age 32. He took control of his own career and seldom faltered. He was married three times and had five children. Upon his death in 1994, four-time Academy ... Written by Zara Janson

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Release Date:

15 March 1996 (USA)  »

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$550,000 (estimated)

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Good Look at the Actor
16 May 2013 | by (Louisville, KY) – See all my reviews

Burt Lancaster: Daring to Reach (1996)

*** (out of 4)

Pretty good documentary taking a look at the life and career of Burt Lancaster. The likes of Jeff Corey, Earl Holliman, James Hill, Rhonda Fleming, Sydney Pollack, Ted Post and Virginia Mayo are on hand to tell stories about the actor. The documentary clocks in well under a hour so it's not as definitive as one would hope but I think fans of the actor should have a good time. I think the best aspect is its title because the documentary really does show how brave Lancaster was with the type of roles he was willing to play. As we go through countless pictures in the actor's filmography, one really realizes that he could play just about anything. The film offers up countless clips from his movie and one really remembers just how talented Lancaster was. The cast tells some pretty funny stories about what type of person Lancaster was and especially when it came to working with him and how he'd often play director, which didn't always sit well with the real director. Mayo tells some fun stories as does Post who directed the actor in the late 70s. There's no question that a more detailed documentary is certainly needed but fans of the actor should still enjoy this one.

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