Leone, Sergio

(1929–1989)
   The inventor of the “spaghetti Western,” Sergio Leone was uniquely able to make films that were both a critical and a box office success. Born in Rome, Leone was what Italians call a figlio d’arte insofar as both his father and mother were prominent figures in the Italian silent cinema. After a lengthy apprenticeship in Hollywood (he made more than 50 films as an assistant director), in 1964, Leone directed the seminal Western A Fistful of Dollars under the pseudonym “Bob Robertson.” This film, which starred Clint Eastwood as “the man with no name,” cost less than $200,000 to make but revived the Western genre in a new, more brutally realistic, form. The film’s sequel, For a Few Dollars More (1965), was equally successful.
   Leone, by now internationally famous, was able to make the two big-budget Westerns that permanently established his reputation as one of the great contemporary film directors: The Good, the Bad ,and the Ugly (1966) and Once Upon a Time in the West (1968). Complex, violent, and philosophical, these movies combined art and entertainment with outstanding skill. The same is true of Leone’s last film, the epic gangster movie Once Upon a Time in America (1984). This saga of a band of Jewish gangsters was a lengthy and complicated study in themes of friendship and betrayal. Drastically cut by its American distributors, the film, when seen in its entirety, can only be described as an intellectual and visual triumph. Leone died in Rome in 1989.
   See also Cinema.

Historical Dictionary of Modern Italy. . 2007.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • LEONE, Sergio — (1929–1989)    Born in 1929 in Rome, the son of a film director from the silent era, Sergio Leone superseded John Ford as the dominant maker of Westerns in the 1960s. His rise to fame and influence was completely unexpected. In Italy in the 1950s …   Westerns in Cinema

  • Leone, Sergio — (1929 1989)    Director, screenwriter, producer. The son of silent film director Roberto Roberti (Vincenzo Leone) and actress Bice Walerian, Leone entered the film industry at a very young age, serving as an unpaid assistant and appearing in a… …   Guide to cinema

  • Leone, Sergio — (1929 1989)    Director, screenwriter, producer. The son of silent film director Roberto Roberti (Vincenzo Leone) and actress Bice Walerian, Leone entered the film industry at a very young age, serving as an unpaid assistant and appearing in a… …   Historical dictionary of Italian cinema

  • Leone, Sergio — born Jan. 3, 1929?, Rome, Italy died April 30, 1989, Rome Italian film director. After working as an assistant to Italian and U.S. directors, he made his directing debut with The Colossus of Rhodes (1961). He won a wide audience with A Fistful of …   Universalium

  • Leone, Sergio — (3 ene. ¿1929?, Roma, Italia–30 abr. 1989, Roma). Director de cine italiano. Después de trabajar como asistente de dirección con realizadores italianos y estadounidenses, debutó como director con El coloso de Rodas (1961). Captó un extenso… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Leone, Sergio — • ЛЕО НЕ (Leone) Серджо (р. 3.1.1929, по др. данным, 1921)    итал. режиссёр. С сер. 40 х гг. работал ассистентом реж. У. Уайлера, Р. Уайза, Ф. Циннемана и др. Писал сц. псевдоисторич. ф. и ф. на мифологич. сюжеты. Как режиссёр завершил съёмки ф …   Кино: Энциклопедический словарь

  • LEONE (S.) — LEONE SERGIO (1921 1989) Né à Rome, Sergio Leone est le fils du metteur en scène du cinéma muet Roberto Leone Roberti et de l’actrice Bice Waleran. Son nom apparaît d’abord au générique de quelques «péplums» (qui ne sont pas parmi les meilleurs… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • leone — ● leone nom masculin Unité monétaire principale de la Sierra Leone. Leone (Sergio) (1929 1989) cinéaste italien; créateur du western spaghetti (Pour une poignée de dollars, 1964; Il était une fois dans l Ouest, 1969) …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Sergio Leone — Pour les articles homonymes, voir Leone. Sergio Leone Données clés Naissance 3 janvier 1929 Rome, Italie Nationalité …   Wikipédia en Français

  • leone — /lee ohn /, n. a paper money, cupronickel or silver coin, and monetary unit of Sierra Leone, equal to 100 cents. [1960 65; (SIERRA) LEONE] * * * (as used in expressions) Leone Sergio Sierra Leone Republic of Sierra Leone * * * …   Universalium

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