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On Sunset Boulevard: The Life and Times of Billy Wilder
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On Sunset Boulevard: The Life and Times of Billy Wilder

4.01  ·  Rating Details  ·  78 Ratings  ·  9 Reviews
From the early years of anti-Semitism and frustration in Austria to the glory of Hollywood and six Academy Awards, Billy Wilders life is as fascinating as his movies. Now, drawing on new interviews, current research, and previously inaccessible archives, Ed Sikov offers endlessly entertaining portrait of one of this centurys most influential directors and screenwriters.
Paperback, 688 pages
Published November 17th 1999 by Hyperion (first published November 23rd 1998)
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Aug 13, 2008 Daniel rated it it was amazing
Probably the best Wilder biography out there, and I had to go through all of them in researching my book "I'll Have What She's Having," which includes chapters on "Sabrina" and "Some Like it Hot." A must for any fan of this great director.
Brian Daniel
Jul 22, 2014 Brian Daniel rated it liked it
In terms of biographies, I prefer to look at the subject's life through the filter of an historic event or what the person is best known for in context. So A Team of Rivals is good; The "life and times" of so-and-so not so much. On Sunset Boulevard: The Life and Times of Billy Wilder is a little bit of both. Actually, it's a little bit "life and times" and quite a bit Hollywood history and Wilder's role within said history as well as how he influenced it. For me this book got off a little slow a ...more
Very readable bio of Billy Wilder, focusing on his career more than his private life, which is perfect for me. Detailed but never boring descriptions of each production is paired with box office and contemporary critical response, as well as Sikov's own critical perspective, interspersed with anecdotes from Billy's life. Many of these stories are told in multiple versions, as it seems Wilder himself was quite prone to exaggeration to increase any story's comedic value, and the producers and acto ...more
Christine Sinclair
Sep 15, 2014 Christine Sinclair rated it really liked it
Great informative bio of one of Hollywood's greatest directors. Very detailed and well-researched, this book is an inside look at a lifelong outsider, as well as the backstory and casting decisions made for each of his films. A movie buff's delight!
Cheryl Lassiter
Oct 07, 2015 Cheryl Lassiter rated it it was amazing
This book is amazing in the amount of detail presented. Sometimes, it's too much for a casual read. An excellent resource for anyone interested in the irascible, brilliant Billy Wilder, his early days as a screenwriter in Vienna and Berlin, and of course, Hollywood. How he must have suffered to know that he tried to get his mother to leave Vienna before the Anschluss, and to know that she later died at the hands of the Nazis.
May 26, 2015 Jenine rated it liked it
Skimmed for the bits I was interested in. Started it after seeing Sabrina for the first time. Now am on an old movie jag and may finally watch Sunset Blvd. Glad he got out of Europe when the getting was good. Lots of everything in here and much more about the shooting process for each film than I needed.
Mar 23, 2015 Marí rated it liked it
Shelves: 2015
27. Un libro de más de 500 páginas.
En las palabras de Trueba al recibir el Oscar:
"Debería agradecerle a Dios pero sólo creo en Billy Wilder. Gracias, Mr. Wilder"
El libro bien, muy meticuloso pero le falta chisssssssme.
Mar 22, 2015 Jonathan rated it it was amazing
May well be the best of the Billy Wilder books and I have read a few.
Richard Downey
Feb 03, 2016 Richard Downey rated it it was amazing
This is a very fun bio of a fascinating character, Billy Wilder. His life is as interesting as any of his movie creations and Ed Sikov has done a remarkable job of capturing the man.
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