Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book


Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  William Friedkin  

Pen Name: None

Genre: Non-Fiction

Born: 1935 in Chicago, Illinois

Sites:


Illinois Connection

Friedkin was born in Chicago, Illinois.

Biographical and Professional Information

Friedkin is the son of Rae (née Green) and Louis Friedkin, a semi-professional softball player, merchant seaman, and men's clothing salesman. His parents were Jewish immigrants from the Ukraine. After seeing the movie Citizen Kane as a boy, Friedkin became fascinated with movies. He began working for WGN-TV immediately after high school. He eventually started his directorial career doing live television shows and documentaries, including The People vs. Paul Crump which won several awards and contributed to the commutation of Crump's death sentence.In 1971, his The French Connection was released to wide critical acclaim. Shot in a gritty style more suited for documentaries than Hollywood features, the film won five Academy Awards, including an Academy Award for Best Picture and Best Director.


Published Works Expand for more information


Titles At Your Library

The Friedkin Connection: A Memoir
ISBN: 0061775126

Harper. 2013

The long-awaited memoir from the Academy Award–winning director of such legendary films as The French Connection, The Exorcist, and To Live and Die in LA, The Friedkin Connection takes readers from the streets of Chicago to the suites of Hollywood and from the sixties to today, with autobiographical storytelling as fast-paced and intense as any of the auteur's films.

William Friedkin, maverick of American cinema, offers a candid look at Hollywood, when

traditional storytelling gave way to the rebellious and alternative

when filmmakers like him captured the paranoia and fear of a nation undergoing a cultural nervous breakdown.

The Friedkin Connection includes 16 pages of black-and-white photographs.