Robert Altman

Lowest Rated: 22% Quintet (1979)
Birthday: Feb 20, 1925
Birthplace: Kansas City, Missouri, USA
During the 1970s, an era widely recognized as a renaissance period of American moviemaking, few directors enjoyed greater prominence than Robert Altman. An iconoclast whose work acutely attacked the conventions of genre filmmaking, Altman both satirized and revitalized such warhorses as the Western, the musical, and the crime drama, waging war on the sterile artifice of mainstream storytelling by creating a singularly sprawling and deliberately messy cinematic world bursting at the seams with sounds, images, characters, and plot lines. Famed for his inventive brand of overlapping (and often improvisational) dialogue and an acknowledged master of modern camera technique, Altman's quixotic career has been uneven at best, yet he remains a pivotal figure of contemporary cinema, a true maverick responsible for many of the defining motion pictures of his times.Born February 20, 1925, in Kansas City, MO, Altman was educated in Jesuit schools prior to joining the Army at the age of 18; over the course of WWII, he flew over 50 bombing missions in Borneo and the Dutch East Indies. Upon his discharge in 1947, Altman studied engineering at the University of Missouri, later inventing a tattooing machine designed for the identification of dogs. He entered filmmaking only as a whim, selling to RKO the script for the 1948 picture The Bodyguard, which he co-wrote with Richard Fleischer. Altman's immediate success encouraged him to move to New York City, where he attempted to forge a career as a writer; he enjoyed little luck, however, and after a similarly fruitless trip to the West Coast, he returned to Kansas City, accepting a job as a director, writer, cameraman, and editor of industrial films for the Calvin Company.After helming some 65 industrial films and documentaries, by 1955 Altman had secured over $60,000 dollars in financing from local backers to make his own feature; two years later, the finished product, titled The Delinquents, was purchased by United Artists for 150,000, dollars. Alfred Hitchcock soon tapped him as a director for his CBS television anthology series Alfred Hitchcock Presents. After just two episodes, he went on to direct episodes of Bonanza, Combat!, and The Kraft Television Theater. Altman wouldn't direct another movie until 1969's That Cold Day in the Park. For his next project, he agreed to adapt a little-known Korean War-era novel satirizing life in the armed services; the film had already been passed over by over a dozen other filmmakers. Upon its 1970 release, however, M*A*S*H was widely hailed as an immediate classic, winning the Palm d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival and netting six Academy Award nominations. Now recognized as a major talent, Altman fielded countless offers to direct big-budget studio films, but instead opted to develop the surreal and experimental Brewster McCloud under his own Lions Gate imprint.With the 1971 revisionist Western McCabe and Mrs. Miller, however, Altman returned to form in stunning fashion. In a class of directors like Martin Scorsese, Francis Ford Coppola, and Woody Allen, Altman helped lead a fantastic artistic movement in '70s film, from the atmospheric Raymond Chandler adaptation The Long Goodbye to the Depression-era romantic caper Thieves Like Us to the gambling study California Split.It was with his 1975 masterpiece Nashville, however, that Altman truly reentered the American cultural consciousness. The movie was hailed from many corners as one of the decade's greatest works, earning five Oscar nominations. A sprawling, intricate meditation on show business and politics featuring some two dozen major characters, Nashville brought Altman's newly-developed Lion's Gate eight-track sound system to its full realization, allowing him to record sound live on the set with microphones instead of more cumbersome equipment, eliminating post-dubbing and making possible later mixing and unmixing to achieve a dense, multi-layered soundtrack. Altman next unveiled Buffalo Bill and t


Highest Rated Movies



69% Altman Actor 2014
No Score Yet The Magic Bond Director Screenwriter 2014
No Score Yet Pot Au Feu Director 2014
No Score Yet Nightmare In Chicago Director 2012
No Score Yet Luck, Trust & Ketchup: Robert Altman in Carver Country Actor 2011
No Score Yet O Lucky Malcolm! Actor 2006
82% A Prairie Home Companion Director Producer 2006
No Score Yet Before the Nickelodeon: The Early Cinema of Edwin S. Porter Actor 2006
No Score Yet Elio Petri... appunti su un autore Actor 2005
No Score Yet The American Ruling Class Actor 2005
100% Z Channel: A Magnificent Obsession Actor 2004
72% The Company Producer Director 2003
77% A Decade Under the Influence Actor 2003
86% Gosford Park Director Producer $41.3M 2001
56% Dr. T and the Women Producer Director Screenwriter $12.2M 2000
28% Trixie Producer 2000
No Score Yet The Opera Lover Marty 1999
86% Cookie's Fortune Director Producer 1999
75% Afterglow Producer 1997
58% The Gingerbread Man Screenwriter Director 1997
63% Kansas City Producer Screenwriter Director 1996
No Score Yet Robert Altman's Jazz '34: Remembrances of Kansas City Swing Director Producer 1996
24% Ready to Wear (Prêt-à-Porter) Director Producer 1994
74% Mrs. Parker and the Vicious Circle (Mrs. Parker and the Round Table) Producer 1994
95% Short Cuts Screenwriter Director Producer 1993
98% The Player Director 1992
88% Vincent & Theo Director 1990
No Score Yet Hollywood Mavericks Actor 1990
No Score Yet Dumb Waiter Director 1989
No Score Yet The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial Director Producer 1988
50% Aria Director Screenwriter 1988
No Score Yet O.C. and Stiggs Producer Director 1987
No Score Yet Basements Director 1987
25% Beyond Therapy Screenwriter Director 1987
75% Fool for Love Director 1985
77% Secret Honor Producer Director 1984
56% Streamers Producer Director 1983
No Score Yet Come Back to the 5 & Dime Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean Director 1982
28% Endless Love Hotel Manager 1981
60% Popeye Director 1980
No Score Yet Health Screenwriter Producer Director 1980
No Score Yet A Perfect Couple Producer Screenwriter Director 1979
22% Quintet Producer 1979
No Score Yet Rich Kids Producer Executive Producer 1979
73% A Wedding Producer Screenwriter Director Actor 1978
75% Remember My Name Producer 1978
97% 3 Women Screenwriter 1977
100% The Late Show Producer 1977
No Score Yet Welcome to L.A. Producer 1976
77% Buffalo Bill and the Indians, or Sitting Bull's History Lesson Producer Director Screenwriter 1976
93% Nashville Producer Director 1975
88% California Split Producer Director 1974
89% Thieves Like Us Director Screenwriter 1974
97% The Long Goodbye Director 1973
75% Images Director Screenwriter 1972
88% McCabe & Mrs. Miller Director Producer Screenwriter 1971
84% Brewster McCloud Director 1971
85% M*A*S*H Director 1970
43% That Cold Day in the Park Director 1969
80% Countdown Director Actor 1968
No Score Yet The James Dean Story Producer Director 1957
No Score Yet The Delinquents Director Screenwriter Producer 1957
No Score Yet The James Dean Story Director 1957
No Score Yet Corn's-A-Poppin' Screenwriter 1956
No Score Yet Bodyguard Screenwriter 1948
83% The Secret Life of Walter Mitty Man Drinking 1947


57% Gun
Producer Executive Producer Director
  • 1997
No Score Yet Tanner '88
  • 1988
No Score Yet Saturday Night Live
  • 1977
No Score Yet Bonanza
Producer Director
  • 1961
  • 1960
No Score Yet Maverick
Screenwriter Director
  • 1960
No Score Yet Alfred Hitchcock Presents
  • 1958
  • 1957
No Score Yet Great Performances


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