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The Director's Idea by Ken Dancyger

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Chapter 11

George Stevens: The American Character—Desire and Conscience

Introduction

George Stevens, like John Ford, began his career making short films. In 1927, Stevens was making comedies with Laurel and Hardy. Although he began as a cinematographer, he began directing in 1930. He directed his last film, “The Only Game in Town,” in 1968. In between, he made important films in the genres of musical (“Swing Time,” 1936), situation comedy (“The More the Merrier,” 1943), action adventure (“Gunga Din,” 1939), Western (“Shane,” 1953), and melodrama (“A Place in the Sun,” 1951). Whether working on a modest scale (“Alice Adams,” 1935) or on a large canvas (“Giant,” 1956), Stevens’ work had an emotional power that has marked the work of important directors ...

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