JOEL SCHUMACHER Biography - Theater, Opera and Movie personalities


Biography » theater opera and movie personalities » joel schumacher


Name: Joel T. Schumacher                                                                 
Born: 29 August 1939 New York, New York, U.S.                                           
Joel Schumacher (born August 29, 1939 in New York, New York, USA) is an American         
film director, writer and producer. He is best known for directing St. Elmo's           
Fire, The Lost Boys, Falling Down, The Client, Batman Forever, A Time to Kill           
and Batman & Robin.                                                                     
Schumacher was born in New York City. His mother Marian, who is Jewish, is               
Swedish and his father Frank is a Baptist from Knoxville, Tennessee, who died           
when Joel was four years old. He studied at Parsons The New School for Design           
and The Fashion Institute of Technology in New York. After first working in             
the fashion industry, he realized his true love was in filmmaking. He moved out         
to Los Angeles, where he began his media work as a costume designer in films             
such as Sleeper and developed his skills with television work while earning an           
MFA from UCLA. He wrote the screenplay for the 1976 low-budget hit movie Car             
Wash and a number of other minor successes. He also wrote 1978's The Wiz, an             
adaptation of the stage play of the same name. His film directorial debut was           
The Incredible Shrinking Woman in 1981, which starred Lily Tomlin, and he               
quickly made more successful films, including three "brat pack" works.                   
St. Elmo's Fire and The Lost Boys, considered to be archetypal movies of the             
1980s, were two of Schumacher's biggest hits. Their style impressed audiences           
and their financial success allowed studios to trust him with ever larger               
Schumacher has also directed two adaptations of the books of John Grisham, The           
Client (1994) and A Time to Kill (1996), the latter as the personal choice of           
Schumacher would later replace Tim Burton as the director of the Batman film             
franchise. He directed Batman Forever in 1995, which was a major summer success         
despite receiving mixed reviews. He later directed Batman & Robin, which was a           
critical disaster, and did poorly at the box office. The film prompted Warner           
Bros. to place the series of movies on hiatus, canceling the next Batman movie           
Batman: Triumphant. (After seven years, the much darker Batman Begins was               
released, in a comprehensive reboot of the franchise).                                   
Batman & Robin had a detrimental effect on Schumacher's reputation, forcing him         
to take on less ambitious projects. On the DVD commentary, Schumacher has               
admitted that his movie disappointed fans of darker Batman adaptations, saying           
that the film was made intentionally marketable and kid-friendly. Schumacher,           
however, is a devoted Batman fan himself and actually would have personally             
preferred an adaptation of the comic, Batman: Year One.                                 
Many fans have complained about what Schumacher did with the Batman franchise.           
One of the more persistent complaints was Schumacher's stylistic approach in             
putting nipples on the Batsuit. He dismissed these issues in the 2005 special           
edition DVD of Batman Forever, saying that these people should "get out more."           
He served as the director for the music videos, "Kiss from a Rose", by Seal, and         
"The End Is the Beginning Is the End", by The Smashing Pumpkins (co-directed             
with Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris). These songs appeared in Batman Forever         
and Batman & Robin, respectively.                                                       
Since 1998, Schumacher has said he is interested in re-editing Forever to make           
it closer to as it was originally conceived.                                             
Following Batman & Robin, Schumacher went on to direct lower budget films (stepping     
down from $100 million budget films) like 8MM with Nicolas Cage, and Flawless           
with Robert De Niro. Neither were big hits, and reviews were mostly negative. In         
1999, Schumacher also directed the music video for "Letting the Cables Sleep" by         
English rock band, Bush. In 2000, Schumacher changed gears radically and                 
garnered the best reviews of his career[citation needed] with the Vietnam-era           
boot camp drama Tigerland, which introduced Hollywood to young Colin Farrell.           
Kirk Honeycutt of the Hollywood Reporter praised the film as such: "Tigerland           
lands squarely in the top tier of best movies about America's Vietnam experience."       
He lowered the budget and scale once again with the controversial Phone Booth,           
which reteamed Schumacher with Colin Farrell. The film, already shelved for             
almost two years, was delayed months further due to the Beltway sniper attacks.         
Upon release, the film performed well due to the recent popularity of Colin             
Farrell (who at the time of filming in 2000 was still relatively unknown).               
Schumacher returned to big-budget Hollywood in 2002 with Bad Company starring           
Anthony Hopkins and Chris Rock. Phone Booth, although produced before Bad               
Company, was released afterwards.                                                       
Andrew Lloyd Webber's The Phantom of the Opera was seen as Joel's comeback in           
2004. While the film earned mixed reviews, gaining harsh criticism from fans of         
the stage musical for casting and directorial choices, it turned out to be a             
success and was nominated for 3 Academy Awards and three Golden Globes including         
Best Motion Picture-Musical or Comedy. However, the film did not win any of them.       
The director has since filmed The Number 23, which received poor box office             
success and worse reviews from critics, although fan reviews were more positive.         
His next project is vampire thriller Town Creek, which began shooting in March