Categories: American Notables.
Robert Aldrich, film director and producer, was born in Cranston, Providence County, Rhode Islandon August 19, 1918.He was the son of Edward Burgess Aldrich and his wife Lora Elsie (Lawson) Aldrich; grandson of U. S. Senator Nelson Wilmarth Aldrich and his wife Abigail Pierce Truman (Chapman) Aldrich.
He received his education at the Moses Brown School in Providence, Rhode Island and the University of Virginia.He dropped out of collegeand headed for Hollywood in 1941 and started working as a production clerk in the RKO Studio,working his way up to assistant director and associate producer.In 1953 he began directing his own films, beginning with "Big Leaguer."By establishing his own production company, Robert produced most of the films he directed.Desiring to make pictures that "audiences will want to see," Robert diverted from the direction of his mentors and prominent directors, Charlie Chaplin, Orson Welles and Jean Renoir and instead made films that generated controversy because of their violence and macabre.
Mr. Robert Aldrich was the head of the jury at the Berlin International Film Festival in 1959.From 1975 - 79 he was the President of the Directors Guild of America.He directed five different actors in Oscar-nominated performances who were: Victor Buono, Bette Davis, Agnes Moorehead, Ian Bannen and Jon Cassavetes.
In politics he was a left-wing Democrat who opposed US involvement in the Vietnam War.
Robert Aldrich died in December 5,1983of kidney failure at his home in Los Angeles, Los Angeles County, California. He was 65 years of age. He was buried at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Hollywood Hills, Los Angeles.His wife's name at the time of his death was Sibylle Siegfried.They had been married on November 25, 1966 at Los Angeles.He had four children from a previous marriageto Harriet Foster, from whom he was divorced in 1965.
Research & Biography: Cheryl Aldrich Skordahl
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