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Robert Houston Poster

Biography

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Overview (1)

Born in California, USA

Mini Bio (1)

Director/writer Bobby Houston is a California-based filmmaker whose most recent documentary, Mighty Times: The Children's March (2004), won the Academy Award in March 2005. His previous film, Mighty Times: The Legacy of Rosa Parks (2002), was nominated for an Academy Award in 2003 and won an Emmy. Both films were produced by HBO and the Southern Poverty Law Center.

Bobby's filmmaking career began after graduating from Harvard. First he starred in Wes Craven's cult classic The Hills Have Eyes (1977) (remade in 2006). He then made his directorial debut with the samurai epic Shogun Assassin (1980), a clever reworking of a Japanese film. It was initially banned upon release, but found its way to screens worldwide and unexpectedly crossed over into hip-hop culture as the audio "bed" for Wu-Tang Clan. In 2003 Quentin Tarantino gave the film a nod when he utilized it as the coda to Kill Bill: Vol. 2 (2004).

In the 1980s Bobby wrote and directed two independent features, the raucous teen comedy _Growing Pains (1984/I)_ (Touchstone) starring starred Martin Mull and Karen Black, and Trust Me (1989) (Cinecom), a black comedy about murder in the art world which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival.

Bobby's partner died of AIDS in 1995. In response, he turned away from a series of studio and network assignments, finding a stronger outlet in documentary films. Rock the Boat (1998) (HBO), his debut documentary, is a rousing verite adventure that chronicles the efforts of an HIV-positive crew that enters an extreme sailing race across the Pacific Ocean. The sailors manage to survive and even place well, in spite of a leaky boat and a hurricane -- while confronting their lives, loves and losses.

"Rock The Boat" became an international festival favorite, was short-listed for an Academy Award and is still being broadcast today. Several prestigious documentaries soon followed, culminating in the "Mighty Times" series, which has won (among others) an Oscar, an Emmy and the IDA Award.

Bobby is currently prepping a new feature, "Be A Man," in part as a response to the election of 2004 and, as always, as a means of speaking truth to power. Bobby's motto is still the same: "Debunk, and inspire."

- IMDb Mini Biography By: TTT Pictures

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