Kaufman's many honors include both Writers Guild and Directors Guild Award nominations for his adaptation of Tom Wolfe's The Right Stuff, a film that went on to win four Academy AwardsÆ. He also received a Writers Guild nomination and an Academy AwardÆ nomination for his screenplay of Czech writer Milan Kundera's The Unbearable Lightness of Being, for which he also won a BAFTA. Kaufman also received The National Society of Film Critics Award for Best Director on the same film. In 1989, Kaufman was honored with the international Orson Welles Award for Best Filmmaker.
Kaufman grew up in Chicago and studied at the University of Chicago. After spending a year at Harvard Law School, he returned to the University of Chicago to begin a master's degree in history. Soon after, he became enthralled with the new wave of European filmmakers and switched gears entirely into cinema.
His very first feature, the mystical comedy Goldstein, won the Prix de la Nouvelle Critique at the Cannes Film Festival. Kaufman then turned his hand to a new-style western, writing and directing The Great Northfield Minnesota Raid, starring Robert Duvall. He then directed the arctic adventure/love story "The White Dawn; and directed, and co-wrote with his wife Rose, the cult favorite The Wanderers. In 1978, he had his first major hit with a new take on the sci-fi thriller Invasion of the Body Snatchers.
Philip Kaufman has been equally lauded as a writer. He shared a co-story by credit with George Lucas for Raiders of the Lost Ark, and also wrote the much-admired screenplay for Clint Eastwood's now-classic Western, The Outlaw Josey Wales. He also co-wrote Rising Sun, based on the Michael Crichton bestseller, and was nominated for an OscarÆ as a co-screenwriter with Jean-Claude Carriere for Unbearable Lightness of Being.
Phil Kaufman has been honored at the Sundance Film Festival, the Cambridge, England Festival, the Mill Valley Film Festival, the Wine Country Film Festival, and the Taos Talking Picture Festival, where he received the Howard Hawkes Storyteller Award. This year Mr. Kaufman will be honored with tributes at both the Institut Lumiere in France and the American Film Institute.
Philip Kaufman Facts
|Birthday||October 23, 1936 (85)|
|Birthplace||Chicago, Illinois, USA|
|Hemingway & Gellhorn|
|The Right Stuff|
|Unbearable Lightness of Being|
|The Unbearable Lightness of Being|
|Invasion Of The Body Snatchers|