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Kathryn Bigelow Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (3)  | Mini Bio (1)  | Spouse (1)  | Trade Mark (3)  | Trivia (21)  | Personal Quotes (13)

Overview (3)

Born in San Carlos, California, USA
Birth NameKathryn Ann Bigelow
Height 5' 11¾" (1.82 m)

Mini Bio (1)

A very talented painter, Kathryn spent two years at the San Francisco Art Institute. At 20, she won a scholarship to the Whitney Museum's Independent Study Program. She was given a studio in a former Offtrack Betting building, literally in an old bank vault, where she made art and waited to be critiqued by people like Richard Serra, Robert Rauschenberg and Susan Sontag. Later she earned a scholarship to study film at Columbia University School of Arts, graduating in 1979. She was also a member of the British avant garde cultural group, Art and Language. Kathryn is the only child of the manager of a paint factory and a librarian.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Home Skully

Spouse (1)

James Cameron (17 August 1989 - 1991) ( divorced)

Trade Mark (3)

Frequently casts Tom Sizemore
Often uses first person perspectives: Blue Steel (1990), (Wire trip scenes in Strange Days (1995) and the chase scenes in Point Break (1991)) and The Hurt Locker (2008).
Frequently uses slow motion, particularly in action scenes.

Trivia (21)

Member of the 'Official Competition' jury at the 54th Berlin International Film Festival in 2003.
Member of the 'Official Competition' jury at the 55th Venice International Film Festival in 1998.
Member of the 'Dramatic' jury at the Sundance International Film Festival in 1990.
Received a Dallas Star award from the AFI Dallas film festival in 2009.
The American Cinematheque honored Bigelow by showing all of her films at The Egyptian Theater in Hollywood, June 5-7 2009.
From July 1-13, 2009, the Harvard Film Archive hosted a retrospective of her career, showing all of her films from The Loveless (1981) to The Hurt Locker (2008). The retrospective was titled "Take It To The Edge: The Films Of Kathryn Bigelow" and featured a Q&A session with her.
Ex-sister-in-law of Mike Cameron.
The 2010 Santa Barbara International Film Festival hosted "A Celebration of Kathryn Bigelow", which featured a retrospective of her work.
First woman to win the Directors Guild of America Award for directing a feature film (for The Hurt Locker (2008)).
Taught at the California Institute of the Arts.
In 2010, she became the first woman in Oscar history to win the Best Director award.
First woman to win a BAFTA Award for Best Director.
When she sent an unfinished short feature to Columbia University's film school, director Milos Forman--then serving as a professor there--found it impressive enough to offer her a scholarship. She graduated from Columbia in 1979.
As of 2018 she was the fifth woman to be nominated for the Directing Academy Award. The other four were: Lina Wertmüller, Jane Campion, Sofia Coppola and Greta Gerwig. Bigelow ended up becoming the first woman to win the award.
Competed with ex-husband James Cameron for the Best Director Oscar in 2010. This marked the first time that (ex-) spouses were nominated alongside each other in this category. She went on to win the award--the first woman director to do so.
In 2010 she was named one of "Time" magazine's 100 Most Influential People in the World.
She has works in the Museum of Modern Art's permanent collection, including Near Dark (1987), a 1987 feature-length film, and her personal paper archive.
On March 7, 2010, at the Kodak Theatre in Los Angeles, CA, her Best Director Oscar statuette for The Hurt Locker (2008) was presented to her by Barbra Streisand, the only woman ever to have won the Golden Globe for Best Director.
Hung out with Susan Sontag and Philip Glass when she first came to New York City in 1970. She and Glass even collaborated on a business venture where they bought old loft places in Soho and Tribeca, renovated them and then sold them. She says she was often the one who sanded the floors.
As of 2018 she has directed two actors to Academy Award-nominated performances: Jeremy Renner (Best Actor, The Hurt Locker (2008)), and Jessica Chastain (Best Actress, Zero Dark Thirty (2012)).
Visited Argentina to promote The Hurt Locker (2008) at the 23rd Mar del Plata International Film Festival in 2008.

Personal Quotes (13)

If there's specific resistance to women making movies, I just choose to ignore that as an obstacle for two reasons: I can't change my gender, and I refuse to stop making movies. It's irrelevant who or what directed a movie, the important thing is that you either respond to it or you don't. There should be more women directing; I think there's just not the awareness that it's really possible. It is.
[on Strange Days (1995)] If you hold a mirror up to society, and you don't like what you see, you can't fault the mirror. It's a mirror. I think that on the eve of the millennium, a point in time only four years from now, the clock is ticking, the same social issues and racial tensions still exist, the environment still needs reexamination so you don't forget it when the lights come up. Strange Days (1995) is provocative. Without revealing too much, I would say that it feels like we are driving toward a highly chaotic, explosive, volatile, Armageddon-like ending. Obviously, the riot footage came out of the LA riots. I mean, I was there. I experienced that. I was part of the cleanup afterwards, so I was very aware of the environment. I mean, it really affected me. It was etched indelibly on my psyche. So, obviously, some of the imagery came from that. I don't like violence. I am very interested, however, in truth. And violence is a fact of our lives, a part of the social context in which we live. But other elements of the movie are love and hope and redemption. Our main character throws up after seeing this hideous experience. The toughest decision was not wanting to shy away from anything, trying to keep the truth of the moment, of the social environment. It's not that I condone violence. I don't. It's an indictment. I would say the film is cautionary, a wake-up call, and that I think is always valuable.
I always want to make films. I think of it as a great opportunity to comment on the world in which we live. Perhaps just because I just came off The Hurt Locker (2008) and I'm thinking of the war and I think it's a deplorable situation. It's a great medium in which to speak about that. This is a war that cannot be won, why are we sending troops over there? Well, the only medium I have, the only opportunity I have, is to use film. There will always be issues I care about.
You cast not for marquee value but for performance and talent. The right actor for the part. Anything else is a compromise.
[on The Hurt Locker (2008)] War's dirty little secret is that some men love it. I'm trying to unpack why, to look at what it means to be a hero in the context of 21st-century combat.
Usually what happens is there will be an urgency, and then I can do nothing else but that. [But] events like this [the killing of Osama bin Laden] only come along once or twice in a millennium.
[on Zero Dark Thirty (2012)] I feel we got it right. I'm proud of the movie, and I stand behind it completely. I think that it's a deeply moral movie that questions the use of force. It questions what was done in the name of finding [Osama bin Laden].
Once you've opened the window on topical material, its very hard to close it. Holding up a contemporary mirror is more attractive to me now than ever.
[in Aug. 2017, on Detroit (2017)] [The Algiers Hotel events have] been shrouded in secrecy for so many years. Hopefully, in bringing this story to light, a number of things may happen. Other stories may come forward, or a meaningful story about race may develop in this country [ . . . ] Think of South Africa--they have a very robust conversation about truth and reconciliation. We don't have that here. It feels like the race issue is relegated to a single community to fix. We all share responsibility towards its resolution or amelioration.
[in Aug. 2017, on the lack of female filmmakers in Hollywood] It's a travesty. I feel like it's trending in the right direction, but it's painfully slow, and where's that inequity coming from? That's a big and complicated sociological question.
[in 2017, on Barry Jenkins] He is one of the rare artists who [is] willing to look into the deeper places of themselves and society in order to provide a lens through which we may discover the humanity at our core. And he has come to the attention of the world at precisely the right moment, just when we most need someone to give voice to those who have not been heard.
[in Aug. 2017, on Detroit (2017)] James Baldwin said, "Nothing can be changed until it is faced". And in America, there seems a radical desire not to face the reality of race. So these events keep replaying.
[in 2017, on why she moved from fine art to feature films] I knew film had the potential to cross all lines of culture and class. That excited me.

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