Robert Evans (film producer)


Robert Evans (film producer)

Infobox Actor



name = Robert Evans
birthname = Robert J. Shapera
birthdate = birth date and age|1930|6|29
birthplace = New York City, New York
spouse = Sharon Hugueny (1961-1962)
Camilla Sparv (1963-1965)
Ali MacGraw (1969-1972)
Phyllis George (1977-1978)
Catherine Oxenberg (1998-1998)
Leslie Ann Woodward (2002-2004)
Victoria White (2005-)
children = Josh Evans (b.1971)

Robert Evans (born Robert J. Shapera June 29, 1930 in New York, New York) is an American film producer best known for his work on "Rosemary's Baby", "Love Story", "The Godfather" and "Chinatown" as well as his hedonistic lifestyle and seven marriages.

Biography

Robert Evans grew up on New York City's Upper West Side during the 1930s, where he was better off than most people living during the Great Depression. His father was a dentist in Harlem, and his mother was a housewife who came from a wealthy family. In his early years, he did promotional work for Evan-Picone, a clothing company founded by his brother, in addition to doing voice work on radio shows.

He was spotted by actress Norma Shearer next to the pool at The Beverly Hills Hotel on election day 1956; she successfully touted him for the role of Irving Thalberg in "Man of a Thousand Faces". The same year, Evans also caught the eye of Darryl F. Zanuck, who cast him as Pedro Romero in a film adaptation of Ernest Hemingway's "The Sun Also Rises". In 1959, he appeared in Twentieth Century Fox's production of "The Best of Everything" with Hope Lange, Diane Baker, and Joan Crawford.

In the 1997 movie "Wag the Dog", a Washington, D.C. spin doctor distracts the electorate from a U.S. presidential sex scandal, by hiring a Hollywood producer played by Dustin Hoffman. Hoffman's character was based directly upon Robert Evans; Hoffman emulated Evans' work habits, mannerisms, quirks, clothing style, hairstyle, and his large square-framed eyeglasses; the real Evans is said to have declared, "I'm magnificent in this film!"fact|date=September 2008

Evans has been married seven times, to Sharon Hugueny (1961-1962), Camilla Sparv (1963-1965), Ali MacGraw (1969-1972), Phyllis George (1977-1978), Catherine Oxenberg (1998),Archerd, Army. [http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_hb1437/is_199807/ai_n5948467&tag=rel.res1?tag=col1;fa_related_widget "Evans and Oxenberg saying 'I do.'"] "Variety", July 1998. Retrieved September 9, 2008.] Leslie Ann Woodward (2002-2004) and Victoria White (2005-2006). Evans' marriage to Oxenberg was annulled after nine days.Archerd, Army. [http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_hb1437/is_/ai_n5949007 "Evans and Oxenberg untie knot."] "Variety", July 1998. Retrieved September 9, 2008.] He married White in Mexico on August 2005, shortly after his 75th birthday; she filed for divorce on June 16, 2006, citing irreconcilable differences.fact|date=September 2008

Evans has one son, Josh Evans, from his marriage to MacGraw.

Career

Evans was determined to become a successful producer. He got his start as a producer by purchasing the rights to a 1966 novel entitled "The Detective" which Evans made into a movie starring Frank Sinatra in 1968. Peter Bart, a writer for the "New York Times", wrote an article about Evans’ aggressive production style. This got Evans noticed by Charles Bluhdorn, who was head of the Gulf+Western conglomerate, and hired Evans as part of a shakeup at Paramount Pictures.

When Evans took over as Head of Production for Paramount, the floundering studio was the ninth largest. Even with Evans’ inexperience he was able to turn the studio around. He made Paramount the most successful studio in Hollywood and transformed it into a very profitable enterprise for Gulf+Western. During his tenure at Paramount, the studio turned out landmark films such as "Barefoot in the Park", "The Odd Couple", "The Italian Job", "True Grit", "Love Story", "Harold and Maude", "Serpico", "The Conversation", "Save the Tiger", "The Great Gatsby", "Rosemary's Baby", "The Godfather", and many others.

Unsatisfied with his financial compensation coupled with a desire to produce films under his own banner, Evans struck a deal with Paramount that enabled him to stay on as studio head while also working as an independent producer. Other producers at Paramount felt this gave Evans an unfair advantage. Eventually Evans stepped down, which enabled him to produce films on his own. He went on to produce such films as: "Chinatown", "Marathon Man", "Black Sunday", "Popeye", "Urban Cowboy", "The Cotton Club", "The Two Jakes", "Sliver", "Jade", "The Phantom", "The Saint", and "How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days".

Evans began to fall on hard times in the early 1980s, when during the production of "Popeye", he was convicted for attempting to buy cocaine. Things got even worse for him when he began filming "The Cotton Club". Evans was slated to direct, but due to production complications Francis Ford Coppola was called in during the filming. The budget for the film soared and Coppola and Evans fought endlessly. Evans was peripherally linked to the murder of Roy Radin, an investor in "The Cotton Club", who was murdered by Bill Mentzer and Alex Marti. The two convicts accused Evans of involvement. Evans pled the Fifth Amendment and was sent home. Evans wrote in his 1994 autobiography "The Kid Stays in the Picture" that he was a "tangential character, at best" in regard to the case.

Joe Eszterhas repeatedly describes his friend, Evans, as "the devil" in this book, "Hollywood Animal", and goes on to say that "all lies ever told anywhere about Robert Evans are true."

Evans continues to produce; the last film that he produced was released in 2003. He also produced and provided the voice for his eponymous character in the animated series "Kid Notorious". Evans currently hosts the Sirius Satellite Radio show "In Bed with Robert Evans".

Filmography

Producer

* "Rosemary's Baby" (1968)
* "The Godfather" (1972)
* "Chinatown" (1974)
* "Marathon Man" (1976)
* "Black Sunday" (1977)
* "Players" (1979)
* "Urban Cowboy" (1980)
* "Popeye" (1980)
* "The Cotton Club" (1984)
* "The Two Jakes" (1990)
* "Sliver" (1993)
* "Jade" (1995)
* "The Phantom" (1996)
* "The Saint" (1997)
* "The Out-of-Towners" (1999)
* "How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days" (2003)
* "Kid Notorious" (2003, TV series)
* "Wedding Season" (2009)

Actor

* "Lydia Bailey" (1952)
* "Man of a Thousand Faces" (1957)
* "The Sun Also Rises" (1957)
* "The Fiend Who Walked the West" (1958)
* "The Best of Everything" (1959)
* "Cannes Man" (1996)
* "Kid Notorious" (2003, TV series)

* In the late 1980s, Evans was the choice for the second Jake alongside Jack Nicholson in "The Two Jakes", the sequel to "Chinatown", however he was denied the part.

Publications

* "The Kid Stays in the Picture" (Autobiography, 1994; also released as a popular audio book, read by the author; made into film in 2002

References

External links

*
* [http://www.jumpboxtv.com/askbob Robert Evans web show] on JumpBoxTV


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