The Award of a Lifetime for Roger Corman

January/February 2010

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The Award of a Lifetime for Roger Corman

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Citing such inspirations as A Bucket of Blood and Attack of the Crab Monsters, director Quentin Tarantino celebrated independent film director and producer Roger Corman when the New World Pictures founder received an Oscar. Corman, '47, was honored along with actress Lauren Bacall, cinematographer Gordon Willis, and producer and former studio executive John Calley. The Academy of Motion Pictures, in a change of schedule, presented these four testimonial Oscars at a dinner November 14, rather than at its March televised event.

Corman's more than 400 movies as producer or director made him the undisputed king of B movies, and Hollywood has long considered him a remarkable mentor. Among those who got their early jobs in his maverick film empire were Francis Ford Coppola, Martin Scorsese, Peter Bogdanovich, Jonathan Demme, John Sayles, Joe Dante, James Cameron, Gale Anne Hurd, '77, and Carl Franklin. Ron Howard, noting that even former child stars have trouble getting a green light when they set out to direct, praised his stint in the "RCUPC—the Roger Corman University of Profitable Cinema" and the lessons of storytelling and production logistics that he learned.

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