Academy Award for Best Director

William Friedkin

by stlucas on May 28, 2017

Place of Birth: Chicago, Cook, Illinois, United States

Date of Birth: August 29, 1935

Ethnicity: Ashkenazi Jewish

William Friedkin is an American film director, producer, and screenwriter. He won the Academy Award for Best Director for The French Connection (1971).

William is the son of Raechael/Rachael “Rae” (Green) and Louis Friedkin. They were both Jewish. William’s father was born in Illinois, U.S. William’s mother was born in Kiev, Russian Empire (now Ukraine).

William is married to actress and film studio executive Sherry Lansing. He has a son with his former partner, Australian dancer and choreographer Jennifer Nairn-Smith, and a son with his former wife, English actress, model, and singer Lesley-Anne Down.

William’s paternal grandparents were David Friedkin and Lena Cohen. David and Lena were from Russia.

William’s maternal grandparents were Morris Green and Eva Lovenberg. Morris and Eva were from Russia.

Sources: Birth record of William Friedkin – http://www.familysearch.org

Marriage record of William’s parents, Louis Friedkin and Raechael/Rachael “Rae” Green – http://www.familysearch.org

William’s mother, Raechael/Rachael “Rae” Green, on the 1910 U.S. Census – http://www.familysearch.org

Genealogy of William Friedkin – http://www.geni.com

Photo by s_bukley/www.bigstockphoto.com

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Elia Kazan

by stlucas on February 13, 2017

Birth Name: Elia Kazantzoglou

Date of Birth: September 7, 1909

Place of Birth: Constantinople, Ottoman Empire (now Istanbul, Turkey)

Date of Death: September 28, 2003

Place of Death: Manhattan, New York City, New York, U.S.

Ethnicity: Greek

Elia Kazan was a Greek-American director, producer, writer, and actor. He twice won the Academy Award for Best Director, for Gentleman’s Agreement (1947) and On the Waterfront (1954).

He was born in Constantinople, Ottoman Empire (now Istanbul, Turkey), the son of George Kazantzoglou and Athena Shishmanoglou. The family moved to the U.S. when Elia was four years old. George and Athena were Cappadocian Greeks. Cappadocian Greeks are people of Greek background who are native to the Cappadocia region of Central-eastern Anatolia (modern Turkey).

Elia was married to English author Frances Kazan, until his death. He had four children with his first wife, playwright Molly Day Thacher, and a son with his second wife, actress Barbara Loden, to whom he was married until her death.

Screenwriter and filmmaker Nicholas Kazan is among Elia’s children with Molly. Elia’s granddaughter is actress Zoe Kazan.

Elia’s paternal grandfather was also named Elia Kazantzoglou.

Elia’s maternal grandfparents were Isaak Shishmanoglou and Anna Karajosifoglou.

Sources: Genealogy of Elia Kazan – https://www.geni.com

Elia Kazan: A Life – autobiography by Elia Kazan, 1988

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Kathryn Bigelow

by stlucas on February 13, 2017

Birth Name: Kathryn Ann Bigelow

Place of Birth: San Mateo, California, United States

Date of Birth: November 27, 1951

Ethnicity:
*English, possibly other (father)
*Norwegian (mother)

Kathryn Bigelow is an American film director, producer, and writer. She won the Academy Award for Best Director for The Hurt Locker (2009). She is the first, and thus far only, woman to have won.

She is the daughter of Gertrude Kathryn (Larson) and Ronald Elliot Bigelow.

Kathryn’s patrilineal ancestry can be traced back to his eight times great-grandparents, John Biglo/Bigelow and Mary Warren, who were from Suffolk, England. Kathryn has described her mother as a “very stoic Norwegian Lutheran”.

Kathryn’s paternal grandfather was Cecil Elliot Bigelow (the son of Granville Alexander Bigelow and Sarah Louise Wilhite). Granville was the son of Rufus Bigelow and Henriette/Henrietta Elizabeth Everman/Eversman. Sarah was the daughter of William Wilhite and Martha.

Kathryn’s paternal grandmother was Maude Lulu Folkers.

Kathryn’s maternal grandparents were Samuel Larson and Bertha Dahl (the daughter of A. L. Dahl and Gertrude). Samuel was born in Wisconsin, to Norwegian parents. Bertha was born in Wisconsin, to a Norwegian father, and to a mother who was also born in Wisconsin, to Norwegian parents.

She was previously married to Canadian director and filmmaker James Cameron.

Sources: Genealogy of Kathryn Bigelow – https://www.geni.com

Genealogies of Kathryn Bigelow (focusing on her father’s side) – http://bigelowsociety.com
https://ia801406.us.archive.org

http://archive.azcentral.com

Photo by Starfrenzy/Bigstock.com

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Francis Ford Coppola

by stlucas on February 13, 2017

Place of Birth: Detroit, Michigan, U.S.

Date of Birth: April 7, 1939

Ethnicity: Italian

Francis Ford Coppola is an American film director, producer, and screenwriter. He won the Academy Award for Best Director for The Godfather Part II (1974). All of Francis’s grandparents were Italian.

Francis is the son of flautist and composer Carmine Coppola and Italia Pennino. He is the brother of academic and author August Coppola and actress Talia Shire. With his wife, filmmaker, artist, and author Eleanor Coppola, he has three children, including actress and director Sofia Coppola. His nephews are actors Nicolas Cage, Jason Schwartzman, and Robert Carmine.

Francis’s paternal grandparents were Agostino/August Nicola Coppola (the son of Carmine Coppola and Filomena Coppola) and Maria Lillian Zasa (the daughter of Pancrazio Zasa and Antonia Montesano). Agostino and Maria Lillian were from Bernalda, Province of Matera, Basilicata, Italy. The Coppola family owns a luxury resort in Bernalda.

Francis’s maternal grandparents were Francesco “Frank” Pennino and Anna Giaquinto. Francis’s grandfather Francesco was also a composer, who was born, c. 1880, in Naples, Campania, Italy.

Sources: Genealogies of Francis Ford Coppola – https://www.geni.com
http://worldconnect.rootsweb.ancestry.com

Photo by s_bukley/Bigstock.com

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Michel Hazanavicius

by stlucas on January 26, 2017

Place of Birth: Paris, France

Date of Birth: 29 March, 1967

Ethnicity: Ashkenazi Jewish

Michel Hazanavicius is a French film director, producer, screenwriter, and editor. He won the Academy Award for Best Director for The Artist (2011).

Michel was born in Paris, France, to a Jewish family. His brother is actor and director Serge Hazanavicius. Michel has two children with his wife, Argentinian-born French actress Bérénice Bejo, and two children with his former partner, film director Virginie Lovisone.

Michel’s grandparents were from Lithuania and Poland. Regarding his family, he has stated:

We are not religious… But we certainly think of ourselves as Jewish, if only because of our history. All four of my grandparents came to France in the 1920s from Eastern Europe. They were fleeing pogroms and persecutions. Then came the Second World War and they had to run again. My parents were ‘hidden children,’ and some of the family died in the camps.

Source: https://entertainment.inquirer.net

Photo by s_bukley/Bigstock.com

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