Redford, Robert 1937–

views updated May 18 2018

Redford, Robert 1937–


Full name, Charles Robert Redford, Jr.; born August 18, 1937, in Santa Monica, CA; son of Charles Robert (an accountant) and Martha (maiden name, Hart) Redford; married Lola Van Wangeman, September 12, 1958 (divorced, 1985); children: Scott (deceased), Shauna, David James ("Jamie"; a writer and producer), Amy Hart (an actress). Education: Attended University of Colorado, 1955, and Pratt Institute, 1958; studied painting in Europe; attended American Academy of Dramatic Arts, New York City.


Office—c/o Sundance Institute, 8530 Wilshire Blvd., 3rd Floor, Beverly Hills, CA 90211; Wildwood Enterprises Inc./South Fork Pictures, 725 Arizona Ave., Suite 306, Santa Monica, CA 90401. Agent—Creative Artists Agency, 2000 Avenue of the Stars, Los Angeles, CA 90067. Publicist—PMK/HBH Public Relations, 700 San Vicente Blvd., Suite G910, West Hollywood, CA 90069.


Actor, director, and producer. Wildwood International (production company; later Wildwood Enterprises), founder, 1969; Sundance Resort, Provo, UT, owner; Sundance Institute (for independent filmmakers), Salt Lake City, UT, founder and president, beginning 1981; host of Sundance Film Festival and co-creator of Sundance Film Channel (cable television network), 1995—; South Fork Films, founder, 1983. Institute for Resource Management, founder, 1983, and fundraiser for various interests and causes. Formerly active with Natural Resources Defense Council and Environmental Defense Fund. Previously worked for International Business Machines and Standard Oil in the 1950s, and as a carpenter and shop assistant.


Kappa Sigma.

Awards, Honors:

Theatre World Award, 1961, for Sunday in New York; Emmy Award nomination, best supporting actor, 1962, for Alcoa Premiere; Golden Globe Award, most promising male newcomer of the year, 1966, for Inside Daisy Clover; Hasty Pudding Man of the Year Award, Hasty Pudding Theatricals, Harvard University, 1970; Film Award, best actor, British Academy of Film and Television Arts, 1971, for Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, Downhill Racer, and Tell Them Willie Boy Is Here; Golden Apple Award, male star of the year, Hollywood Women's Press Club, 1973; Academy Award nomination, best actor, 1974, for The Sting; Golden Globe awards, male world film favorite, 1975, 1977, and 1978; National Board of Review Award, best director, 1980, Academy Award, best director, Golden Globe Award, and Directors Guild of America Award (with others), outstanding directorial achievement for feature films, all 1981, for Ordinary People; Dartmouth Film Society award, 1990; Golden Globe Award nomination, best director, 1993, for A River Runs Through It; Cecil B. DeMille Award, Hollywood Foreign Press Association, 1994; Academy Award nomination and Golden Globe Award nomination, both best director, Academy Award nomination (with others), New York Film Critics Award, and Film Award, British Academy of Film and Television Arts, all best picture, 1995, for Quiz Show; Life Achievement Award, Screen Actors Guild, 1996; Golden Globe Award nomination, best director of a motion picture, and Blockbuster Entertainment Award nomination, favorite actor in a drama or romance, both 1999, for The Horse Whisperer. Honorary L.H.D., University of Colorado, 1987; Audubon Medal, National Audubon Society, 1989, for "lifetime campaign for environmental protection"; honorary D.Univ., University of Massachusetts, 1990; National Medal of Freedom, National Endowment for the Arts, 1996; Freedom in Film Award, Nashville Film Festival, 2001; Honorary Academy Award, 2002; honorary doctorate of humane letters, Bard College, 2004; Kennedy Center Honors, 2005; Special Prize for Outstanding Contribution to World Cinema, Karlovy Vary International Film Festival, 2005; named an Officer of the French Ordre des Arts et des Lettres.


Film Appearances:

(Uncredited) Basketball player, Tall Story, 1960.

Private Ray Loomis, War Hunt, T-D Enterprises/United Artists, 1962.

Captain Hank Wilson, Situation HopelessBut Not Serious, Paramount, 1965.

Wade Lewis, Inside Daisy Clover, Warner Bros., 1966.

Eubber Reeves, The Chase, Columbia, 1966.

Owen Legate, This Property Is Condemned, Paramount, 1966.

Paul Bratter, Barefoot in the Park, Paramount, 1967.

David Chappellet, Downhill Racer, Paramount, 1967.

Harry Longbaugh, the Sundance Kid, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, Twentieth Century-Fox, 1969.

Christopher Cooper, Tell Them Willie Boy Is Here (also known as Willie Boy), Universal, 1970.

"Big Halsey" Knox, Little Fauss and Big Halsey, Paramount, 1970.

The Making of "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid," 1970.

Title role, Jeremiah Johnson, Warner Bros., 1972.

Himself, The Saga of Jeremiah Johnson, 1972.

John Archibald Dortmunder, The Hot Rock (also known as How to Steal a Diamond in Four Uneasy Lessons), Twentieth Century-Fox, 1972.

Bill McKay, The Candidate, Warner Bros., 1972.

Hubbell Gardner, The Way We Were, Columbia, 1973.

Johnny Hooker, The Sting, Universal, 1973.

Jay Gatsby, The Great Gatsby, Paramount, 1974.

Title role, The Great Waldo Pepper, Universal, 1974.

Narrator, Following the Tundra Wolf, 1974.

Joe Turner, Three Days of the Condor (also known as 3 Days of the Condor), Paramount, 1975.

Major Julian Cook, A Bridge Too Far, United Artists, 1975.

Narrator, Broken Treaty at Battle Mountain (documentary), 1975.

Bob Woodward, All the President's Men, Warner Bros., 1976.

Himself, Pressure and the Press: The Making of "All the President's Men," 1976.

Norman "Sonny" Steele, The Electric Horseman, Columbia, 1979.

Henry Brubaker, Brubaker, Twentieth Century-Fox, 1980.

Roy Hobbs, The Natural, TriStar, 1984.

Denys Finch Hatton, Out of Africa, Universal, 1985.

Tom Logan, Legal Eagles, Universal, 1986.

Narrator, To Protect Mother Earth (also known as Broken Treaty II; documentary), 1989.

Narrator, Changing Steps, 1989.

Narrator, Yosemite: The Fate of Heaven, 1989.

Jack Weil, Havana, Universal, 1990.

Himself, Our Biosphere: The Earth in Our Hands, 1991.

(Uncredited) Narrator, A River Runs Through It, Columbia, 1992.

Martin Bishop/Martin Brice, Sneakers, Universal, 1992.

Narrator, Incident at Oglala (also known as Leonard Peltier: A True Story), Miramax, 1992.

John Gage, Indecent Proposal, Paramount, 1993.

Warren Justice, Up Close and Personal, Buena Vista, 1996.

Himself, Wild Bill, Hollywood Maverick: The Life and Times of William A. Wellman (documentary; also known as Wild Bill, Hollywood Maverick), Turner Pictures, 1996.

Himself, Anthem (documentary), Zeitgeist Films, 1997.

Tom Booker, The Horse Whisperer, Buena Vista, 1998.

Himself, Endredando sombras (documentary; also known as Entangling Shadows), Producciones Amaranta, 1998.

Forever Hollywood (documentary), Eastman Kodak Co., 1999.

Himself, New York in the 50's, Avatar Films, 2001.

Nathan Muir, The Spy Game, Universal, 2001.

Lieutenant General Eugene Irwin, The Last Castle, DreamWorks Distribution, 2001.

Himself, The Making of "Spy Game" (documentary short), Universal Home Entertainment, 2001.

Himself, More About the Condor (documentary short), Studio Canal, 2001.

Himself, The Making of "Sneakers" (documentary short), Universal Studios Home Video, 2001.

Himself, Sundance 20 (documentary), Sundance Channel, 2002.

Himself, Abby Singer (also known as Abby Singer 2007), 2003.

Wayne Hayes, The Clearing (also known as Anatomie einer entfuhrung), Fox Searchlight Pictures, 2004.

Narrator, Sacred Planet (documentary short), Buena Vista, 2004.

Himself, Film Trix 2004 (documentary short), 2004.

Einar Gilkyson, An Unfinished Life (also known as Ein Ungezahmtes leben), Miramax, 2005.

Himself, Trudell (documentary), Balcony Releasing, 2005.

Himself, The Art of "The Sting" (documentary), Universal Studios Home Video, 2005.

Voice of Ike the Horse, Charlotte's Web (also known as Schweinchen Wilbur und seine freunde), Paramount, 2006.

Narrator, Cosmic Collisions (documentary short), 2006.

Himself, All That Follows Is True: The Making of "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid" (documentary short), Fox Home Video, 2006.

Himself, Woodward and Bernstein: Lighting the Fire (documentary short), Warner Home Video, 2006.

Himself, Telling the Truth About Lies: The Making of "All the President's Men" (documentary short), Warner Home Video, 2006.

Dr. Stephen Malley, Lions for Lambs, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, 2007.

Himself, The Unforeseen (documentary), Cinema Guild, 2007.

Broadway: Beyond the Golden Age (documentary; also known as B.G.A.2 and Broadway: The Golden Age Two), 2008.

Also appeared in The Crow Killer.

Film Work:

Coproducer, Downhill Racer, Paramount, 1967.

Coproducer, All the President's Men, Warner Bros., 1976.

Director, Ordinary People, Paramount, 1980.

Executive producer, The Solar Film, 1981.

Producer, The Natural, TriStar, 1984.

Executive producer, Promised Land (also known as Young Hearts), Vestron, 1987.

Executive producer, Some Girls (also known as Sisters), Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer/United Artists, 1988.

Director and producer, The Milagro Beanfield War, Universal, 1988.

Executive producer, The Dark Wind, 1991.

Executive producer, Incident at Oglala (also known as Leonard Peltier: A True Story), Miramax, 1992.

Director and producer, A River Runs Through It, New Line Cinema, 1992.

Executive producer, King of the Hill, 1993.

Director and producer, Quiz Show, 1994.

Coproducer, The American President, 1995.

Executive producer, She's the One, Twentieth Century-Fox, 1996.

Executive producer, No Looking Back, Gramercy, 1998.

Executive producer, Slums of Beverly Hills, Twentieth Century-Fox, 1998.

Producer, A Civil Action, Buena Vista, 1998.

Director and producer, The Horse Whisperer, Buena Vista, 1998.

Director and producer, The Legend of Bagger Vance, DreamWorks Distribution, 2000.

Executive producer, How to Kill Your Neighbor's Dog (also known as Mad Dogs and Englishman), Millennium Films, 2000.

Executive producer, People I Know (also known as Im inneren kreis and Der innere kreis), Myriad Pictures/South Fork Pictures, Miramax, 2001.

Executive producer, Love in the Time of Money, THINKFilm, 2002.

Executive producer, The Motorcycle Diaries (also known as Diarios de motocicleta, Carnets de voyage, Die reise des jungen, and Voyage a motocyclette), Focus Features, 2004.

Executive producer, The Unforeseen (documentary), 2007.

Director and producer, Lions for Lambs, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, 2007.

Television Appearances; Specials:

"Captain Brassbound's Conversion," Hallmark Hall of Fame, NBC, 1960.

The 53rd Annual Academy Awards, ABC, 1981.

Narrator, "Condor," National Audubon Society Specials, PBS, 1986.

The Golden Eagle Awards, syndicated, 1987.

Narrator, Living Dangerously, Arts and Entertainment, 1987.

Bill Moyer's World of Ideas, PBS, 1988.

Narrator, "Grizzly and Man: Uneasy Truce," National Audubon Society Specials, PBS, 1988.

People Magazine on TV, CBS, 1989.

Robert Redford and Sydney Pollack: The Men and Their Movies (also known as Robert Redford: The Man, the Movies, and the Myth), NBC, 1990.

The New Hollywood, NBC, 1990.

The Challenge to Wildlife: A Public Television Special Report, PBS, 1990.

Narrator, Three Flags over Everest, PBS, 1990.

Host and narrator, "Wolves," National Audubon Society Specials, PBS, 1990.

Here's Looking at You, Warner Bros., 1991.

Naked Hollywood, 1991.

The Kennedy Center Honors: A Celebration of the Performing Arts, 1992.

Hollywood and Politics, 1992.

Stars in the Making, 1995.

Paul Newman: Hollywood's Charming Rebel, 1995.

Inside the Academy Awards, 1995.

Honoree, The Second Annual Screen Actors Guild, NBC, 1996.

Narrator, Wallace Stegner: A Writer's Life, 1997.

Independents Day, Sundance Channel, 1998.

Host, Visions of Grace: Robert Redford and "The Horse Whisperer," 1998.

Forever Hollywood, 1999.

Bill Bradley: In the Game, 1999.

Narrator, The Mystery of Chaco Canyon, 2000.

Robert Redford: Hollywood Outlaw, 2000.

Paul Newman, 2001.

"Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid: Outlaws of Time," History v. Hollywood, History Channel, 2001.

The 74th Annual Academy Awards, ABC, 2002.

OL Salt Lake City 2002, 2002.

Robert Redford, Bravo, 2002.

Once Upon a Time in Utah, Sundance, BBC, 2003.

Host, National Anthem: Inside the Vote for Change Concert Tour, Sundance, 2004.

Presenter, AFI Life Achievement Award: A Tribute to Meryl Streep, USA Network, 2004.

A "Dr. Phil" Primetime Special: Family First, CBS, 2004.

The Making of "The Motorcycle Diaries," 2004.

Biography Special: The Fondas, Arts and Entertainment, 2004.

Something About Sydney Pollack, 2004.

The 62nd Annual Golden Globe Awards, NBC, 2005.

The Secret Man, NBC, 2005.

Honoree, The 28th Annual Kennedy Center Honors: A Celebration of the Performing Arts, CBS, 2005.

The Mark Twain Prize: Neil Simon, 2006.

The Kennedy Center Presents: The 2006 Mark Twain Prize, PBS, 2006.

Also appeared in Hollywood and Politics, CNN.

Television Appearances; Pilots:

Tanner on Tanner, Sundance, 2004.

Television Appearances; Episodic:

"The Case of the Treacherous Toupee," Perry Mason, CBS, 1958.

Jimmy Coleman, "Iron Hand," Maverick, ABC, 1960.

Bill Johnson, "The Last Gunfight," The Deputy, NBC, 1960.

Lieutenant Lott, "In the Presence of Mine Enemies," Playhouse 90, CBS, 1960.

John Torsett, "The Bounty Hunter," Tate, NBC, 1960.

"The Golden Deed," Moment of Fear, NBC, 1960.

"Comanche Scalps," Tate, NBC, 1960.

Don Parritt, "The Iceman Cometh," Play of the Week, syndicated, 1960.

"Born a Giant," Our American Heritage, NBC, 1960.

Danny Tilford, "Breakdown," Rescue 8, 1960.

Dick Hart, "The Case of the Treacherous Toupee," Perry Mason, 1960.

Blue Jacket, "Captain Brassbound's Conversion," Hallmark Hall of Fame (also known as Hallmark Television Playhouse), 1960.

"Black Monday," Play of the Week, syndicated, 1961.

Baldwin, "Tombstone for a Derelict," Naked City, ABC, 1961.

George Harrod, "The Coward," Americans, NBC, 1961.

Johnny Gates, "The Grudge," Whispering Smith, NBC, 1961.

Janosh, "First Class Mouliak," Route 66, CBS, 1961.

Art Ellison, "The Covering Darkness," Bus Stop, ABC, 1961.

Hitchhiker, "Lady Killer," The New Breed, ABC, 1961.

Charlie Marx, "The Right Kind of Medicine," Alfred Hitchcock Presents, NBC, 1961.

Chuck Marsden, "A Piece of the Action," The Alfred Hitchcock Hour, CBS, 1962.

Mark Hadley, "The Burning Sky," Dr. Kildare, NBC, 1962.

George Laurents, "The Voice of Charlie Pont," Alcoa Premiere, ABC, 1962.

Harold Beldon, "Nothing in the Dark," The Twilight Zone (also known as Twilight Zone), 1962.

Jackson Emmit Parker, "Snowball," The Untouchables, ABC, 1963.

David Chesterman, "A Tangled Web," The Alfred Hitchcock Hour, CBS, 1963.

Nick Oakland, "The Last of the Big Spenders," The Dick Powell Show (also known as The Dick Powell Theatre), NBC, 1963.

Roger Morton, "Bird and Snake," Breaking Point, ABC, 1963.

Matthew Cordell, "The Evil That Men Do," The Virginian (also known as The Men from Shiloh), NBC, 1963.

Gary Degan, "The Siege," The Defenders, CBS, 1964.

V.I.P.—Schaukel, 1980.

Narrator, "Do You Mean There Are Still Real Cowboys?," The American Experience, PBS, 1988.

Narrator, The Mystery of Chaco Canyon, PBS, 1989.

Narrator, "Yosemite: The Fate of Heaven," The American Experience, PBS, 1989.

The Kennedy Center Honors: A Celebration of the Performing Arts, 1992.

"Waldo Salt: A Screenwriter's Journey," American Masters, PBS, 1992.

"Rod Serling: Submitted for Your Approval," American Masters, PBS, 1995.

"Paul Newman: Hollywood's Charming Rebel," Biography, Arts and Entertainment, 1995.

The Rosie O'Donnell Show, syndicated, 1998.

"Robert Redford: Hollywood Outlaw," Biography, Arts and Entertainment, 2000.

"The Legend of Bagger Vance," HBO First Look, HBO, 2000.

"Inside the Walls of ‘The Last Castle,’" HBO First Look, HBO, 2001.

"Robert Redford," Bravo Profiles, Bravo, 2001.

The Ray Martin Show, 2001.

Independent Day, 2002.

Leute heute, 2002.

Festival Pass with Chris Gore, Starz, 2002.

Carl Schurz, "What Is Freedom?," Freedom: A History of Us, PBS, 2003.

Captain M. M. Miller, "A War to End Slavery," Freedom: A History of Us, PBS, 2003.

"Dustin Hoffman," The Hollywood Greats (also known as Hollywood Greats), BBC1, 2004.

"The Clearing," Anatomy of a Scene, Sundance, 2004.

Ahora, 2004.

Tanner on Tanner, Sundance, 2004.

"Robert Redford & Paul Newman," Iconoclasts, Sundance, 2005.

Host, "The Power of Knowledge," The New Heroes, 2005.

Host, "Technology of Freedom," The New Heroes, 2005.

Host, "Power of Enterprise," The New Heroes, 2005.

Host, "Dreams of Sanctuary," The New Heroes, 2005.

"Robert Redford," HARDtalk Extra, BBC, 2005.

Inside the Actors Studio, Bravo, 2005.

Hardball with Chris Matthews, CNBC, 2005.

The Al Franken Show, Sundance, 2005.

Magacine, 2005.

20/20 (also known as ABC News 20/20), ABC, 2005.

Narrator, "America's Underwater Treasures: Part I & II," Jean-Michel Cousteau: Ocean Adventures, 2006.

"The Unforeseen," Now with Bill Moyers (also known as Now), PBS, 2007.

Corazon de …, 2006.

Also appeared in an episode of Sesame Street.

Television Work; Series:

Executive producer, Iconoclasts, Sundance, 2005-2006.

Executive producer, Big Ideas for a Small Planet, Sundance, 2007.

Television Work; Movies:

Executive producer, Grand Avenue, HBO, 1996.

Executive producer, Skinwalkers, PBS, 2002.

Executive producer, Coyote Waits, PBS, 2003.

Executive producer, A Thief of Time, PBS, 2004.

Television Work; Specials:

Creative advisor, The Native Americans, 1994.

Executive producer, Visions of Grace: Robert Redford and "The Horse Whisperer," 1998.

Television Work; Episodic:

Executive producer, "Yosemite: The Fate of Heaven," The American Experience, PBS, 1989.

Stage Appearances:

Tall Story, Broadway production, 1959.

The Highest Tree, Longacre Theatre, New York City, 1960.

Little Moon of Alban, 1960.

Sunday in New York, Broadway production, 1961-62.

Paul Bratter, Barefoot in the Park, Broadway production, 1963-64.



Film-Fest DVD: Issue 1—Sundance, 1999.

Also associated with the video California Condor.



The Solar Film, 1981.

Television Episodes:

"Yosemite: The Fate of Heaven," The American Experience, PBS, 1989.

Other Writings:

The Outlaw Trail (memoir), Grosset (New York, NY), 1978.

Contributor of articles to periodicals, including American Film, Film Comment, and National Geographic.



Contemporary Authors, Volume 107, Gale, 1983.

Crowther, Bruce, Robert Redford, Spellmount, 1985.

Downing, David, Robert Redford, W. H. Allen & Co., 1982.

Encyclopedia of World Biography Supplement, Volume 18, Gale, 1998.

International Dictionary of Films and Filmmakers, Volume 3: Actors and Actresses, St. James Press, 1996.

Reed, D. A., Robert Redford, Sherbourne, 1975.

Schoell, William, The Sundance Kid: A Biography of Robert Redford, Taylor Trade Publishing, 2006.

Spada, James, The Films of Robert Redford, Citadell Press, 1977.


American Film, March, 1988, p. 26.

Entertainment Weekly, fall, 1996; September 5, 1997; November 1, 1999, p. 91.

Film Comment, January/February, 1988, p. 32.

Interview, September, 1994; January, 1997.

Newsweek, May 28, 1984, p. 75.

New York, December 10, 1990, p. 34.

People Weekly, February 18, 1980, p. 96; June 8, 1998, p. 86.

Premiere, February, 1991, p. 88; June, 1998, p. 37.

Rolling Stone, October 6, 1994.

Sports Illustrated, May 7, 1984, p. 92.

USA Today, May, 1999, p. 62.

Redford, Robert

views updated May 18 2018


Nationality: American. Born: Charles Robert Redford, Jr. in Santa Monica, California, 18 August 1937. Education: Attended Van Nuys High School, California; University of Colorado, Boulder; Pratt Institute, New York; American Academy of Dramatic Arts, New York. Family: Married Lola Jean Van Wagenen, 1958 (divorced), children: Shauna, David James, Amy Hart. Career: Made his Broadway debut in Tall Story, 1959; made guest appearances on numerous TV series, including Hallmark Hall of Fame, Maverick, The Virginian, The Defenders, Twilight Zone, Alfrted Hitchcock Presents, Route 66, The Untouchables, Naked City, Perry Mason, Playhouse 90, and The Deputy, 1960–64; made his film debut in War Hunt, 1962; appeared on Broadway in Barefoot in the Park, 1963, and in the film version, 1967; directed the film Ordinary People, 1980; set up Sundance Institute for young filmmakers, 1980; also owner of the Sundance ski resort in Provo, Utah; and is a dedicated conservationist. Awards: Most Promising Newcomer-Male Golden Globe, for Inside Daisy Clover, 1965; Best Actor British Academy Award, for Tell Them Willie Boy Is Here, Downhill Racer, and Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, 1970; World Film Favorite-Male Golden Globe, 1975; World Film Favorite-Male Golden Globe, 1977; World Film Favorite-Male Golden Globe, 1978; Best Director Academy Award, Directors Guild of America Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Motion Pictures, National Board of Review Best Director, Best Director-Motion Picture Golden Globe, for Ordinary People, 1980; Cecil B. DeMille Award-Golden Globe, 1994; Screen Actors Guild Lifetime Achievement Award, 1996. Address: 1223 Wilshire Boulevard #412, Santa Monica, CA 90403, U.S.A.

Films as Actor:


War Hunt (Sanders) (as Private Ray Loomis)


Situation Hopeless, but Not Serious (Reinhardt) (as Hank);Inside Daisy Clover (Pakula) (as Wade Lewis)


The Chase (Arthur Penn) (as Eubber Reeves); This Property Is Condemned (Pollack) (as Owen Legate)


Barefoot in the Park (Saks) (as Paul Bratter)


Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (Hill) (as SundanceKid); Downhill Racer (Ritchie) (as David Chappellet); Tell Them Willie Boy Is Here (Polonsky) (as Cooper)


Little Fauss and Big Halsy (Furie) (as Big Halsy)


The Hot Rock (Yates) (as Dortmunder); The Candidate (Ritchie)(as Bill McKay); Jeremiah Johnson (Pollack) (title role)


The Way We Were (Pollack) (as Hubbel Gardiner); The Sting(Hill) (as Johnny Hooker)


The Great Gatsby (Clayton) (title role)


The Great Waldo Pepper (Hill) (title role); Three Days of the Condor (Pollack) (as Turner)


All the President's Men (Pakula) (as Bob Woodward, + co-pr)


A Bridge Too Far (Attenborough) (as Maj. Cook)


The Electric Horseman (Pollack) (as Sonny)


Brubaker (Rosenberg) (title role)


The Natural (Levin) (as Roy Hobbs)


Out of Africa (Pollack) (as Denys Finch-Hatton)


Legal Eagles (Reitman) (as Tom Logan)


Do You Mean There Are Still Real Cowboys? (Blair—for TV)(as narrator)


Yosemite: The Fate of Heaven (doc) (as narrator); To Protect Mother Earth (doc) (as narrator)


Havana (Pollack) (as Jack Weil)


Incident at Oglala (Apted—doc) (as narrator, + exec pr);Sneakers (Robinson) (as Martin Bishop/Martin Brice)


Indecent Proposal (Lyne) (as John Gage)


Up Close & Personal (Avnet) (as Warren Justice); Wild Bill: Hollywood Maverick (Robinson—doc) (as himself)


Anthem (Gabel, Hahn—doc) (as himself)


Enredando sombras (Aray, Birri—doc) (as himself); Independent's Day (Zenovich—for TV) (as himself)


Forever Hollywood (Glassman, McCarthy—doc) (as himself)

Films as Director:


Ordinary People


The Milagro Beanfield War (+ co-pr)


A River Runs through It (+ ro as narrator, co-pr)


Quiz Show (+ pr)


The Horse Whisperer (+ ro as Tom Booker, pr)


The Legend of Bagger Vance (+ co-pr)

Other Films:


Promised Land (Hoffman) (co-exec pr)


Some Girls (Sisters) (Hoffman) (exec pr); 84 Charlie Mopic(Duncan) ("thanks to")


The Dark Wind (Morris) (co-exec pr)


King of the Hill (Soderbergh) (exec pr)


The American President (Rob Reiner) (co-pr); The Brothers McMullen (Burns) ("special thanks")


Grand Avenue (Sackheim—for TV) (exec pr); She's the One(Burns) (exec pr)


Slums of Beverly Hills (Jenkins) (exec pr); A Civil Action(Zaillian) (pr); No Looking Back (Burns) (exec pr)


How to Kill Your Neighbor's Dog (Kalesniko) (exec pr)


By REDFORD: book—

The Outlaw Trail, New York, 1978.

By REDFORD: articles—

Interview with N. Arnoldi and M. Ciment, in Positif (Paris), October 1972.

"Sydney Pollack: The Way We Are," interview with Patricia Erens, in Film Comment (New York), September-October 1975.

Interview with M. Cosandaey, in Cineaste (New York), vol. 16, nos. 1–2, 1987–88.

Interview with Stephen Schaefer, in Film Comment (New York), January/February, 1988.

Interview with Jill Kearney, in American Film (New York), March 1988.

Interview with Allan Hunter, in Films and Filming (London), July 1988.

"Redford Talks: Our Man in Havana Breaks His Silence," interview with Neil Gabler, in New York, 10 December 1990.

"Weird Wild and Woolly; Welcome to the Offbeat World of Robert Redford," interview with Nicole Burdette, in Harper's Bazaar, October 1992.

"Redford Runs Deep," in Radio Times (London), 6 February 1993.

Interview with Hal Rubenstein, in Interview (New York), September 1994.

Interview with Anthony DeCurtis, in Rolling Stone (New York), 6 October 1994.

"People No Longer Believe That Television Tells the Truth," interview with Andrew Duncan, in Time Out (London), 18 February 1995.

Scenario (Rockville), Summer 1995.

"Question Time," interview with Tom Charity, in Time Out (London), 22 February 1995.

Interview with P. Troy, in Journal: Writers Guild of America, West (Los Angeles), December 1995-January 1996.

Fuller, G., "Redford's Resolve," in Interview (New York), January 1997.

"Robert Redford," interview with T. McCarthy, in Premiere (New York), June 1998.

On REDFORD: books—

Spada, James, The Films of Robert Redford, Secaucus, New Jersey, 1977; updated ed., 1984.

Bardavid, Gerard, Robert Redford, Paris, 1980.

Downing, David, Robert Redford, New York, 1982.

Jeier, Thomas, Robert Redford: Seine Filme, sein Leben, Munich, 1984.

Crowther, Bruce, Robert Redford, Tunbridge Wells, Kent, 1985.

Durant, Philippe, Robert Redford, Paris, 1985.

McKnight, Stephanie, editor, Robert Redford, London, 1988.

Clinch, Minty, Robert Redford, Sevenoaks, Kent, 1989.

Callan, Michael Feeney, Robert Redford: the River and the Road, London, 1999.

On REDFORD: articles—

Life (cover story) (New York), 6 February 1970.

Eyles, Allen, "Robert Redford," in Focus on Film (London), Winter 1972.

Cieutat, Michel, "Robert Redford, ou la nostalgie du passé simple," in Positif (Paris), May 1974.

Chevallier, J., "Portrait Robert Redford," in Cinéma (Paris), May 1980.

Haskell, Molly, "Gould vs. Redford vs. Nicholson," in The Movie Star, edited by Elisabeth Weis, New York, 1981.

Perry, G., "Sundance," in American Film (Washington, D.C.), October 1981.

Current Biography 1982, New York, 1982.

Hanson, Steve, Patricia King Hanson, and Pat H. Broeske, "Ruling Stars," in Stills (London), June/July 1985.

Hibbin, S., "Robert Redford," in Films and Filming (London), March 1986.

Thomson, David, "Ordinary Bob: Can Robert Redford Ever Explode?," in Film Comment (New York), January/February 1988.

Thompson, A., "Sundance," in Sight and Sound (London), Winter 1988–89.

Alion, Y., "Robert Redford," in Revue du Cinéma (Paris), September 1990.

Caputo, Philip, "Robert Redford: Alone on the Range," in Esquire (New York), September 1992.

Clark, John, "Robert Redford," in Premiere (New York), October 1992.

Weinraub, Bernard, "Robert Redford Speaks His Mind on Truth, Justice, and Hollywood," in New York Times, 4 May 1992.

Nilsson, Ole Steen, "Rentable Robert Redford," in Kosmorama (Copenhagen), Spring 1995.

Brodie, J., "Redford Begins Dance With Political Tune," in Variety (New York), 20/26 January 1997.

Ulmer, J.M., "The Seniors," in Premiere (New York), February 1998.

Rayner, R., "Existential Cowboy," in The New Yorker, 18 May 1998.

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The price of popularity with the moviegoing public often is diminished stature with the critics. Such is the case with Robert Redford, whose exquisite all-American handsomeness has decorated movie screens since the early 1960s. After several years working on stage and as a guest actor in television series episodes, he debuted in War Hunt, a little-seen, low-budget war film. He slowly built up his career throughout that decade, earning his first commercial success by recreating his Broadway role as the stuffy lawyer in the Neil Simon comedy Barefoot in the Park. At the end of the 1960s, he became one of the world's top movie stars and box-office attractions with his fame-solidifying appearance opposite Paul Newman in Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. Newman and Redford are similar in that both are among the beautiful people whose fortunes are in their faces. But Newman, unlike Redford, has chosen not just to play ornaments in glossy Hollywood star vehicles. From Somebody Up There Likes Me in 1956 through Twilight in 1998, Newman has played a wide range of interesting, challenging, deeply complicated characters. Meanwhile, Redford's characters have been confined to a fairly narrow spectrum. He rarely has played unsympathetic types, two exceptions being the arrogant opportunists in Downhill Racer and Little Fauss and Big Halsy. Instead, nearly all of his roles have been charming heroes, or handsome icons who rarely display emotional fireworks. Extremes of anger or romantic ardor are uncommon in his work. Rather, his characters remain dispassionate as they become involved in the dynamics of the story. They are like athletes who look good on the playing field, and are admired by the fans as they play their games, but whose inner workings remain known only to their coaches or fellow players. Even when his character is flawed (the idealistic, naively deluded candidate who compromises his integrity in The Candidate) or victimized (the tragedy-tainted baseball phenom in The Natural), Redford's overriding image is that of a Golden Boy. For this reason, recognition as a truly great actor (as opposed to truly great movie star) always has eluded him. The quintessential Redford-as-handsome-icon performance is found in The Way We Were. Here, his character is not so much a person as an object, a larger-than-life divine blond being to be admired by Barbra Streisand. Streisand has the meaty role, that of the ethnic, committed political activist who undergoes the bulk of the character development. Redford is essentially a male Bo Derek—a shallow Joe College who is called upon to do little more than be beautiful.

In all fairness to the actor, however, it must be noted that he came to stardom in an era in which more and more major male movie stars were essentially character actors whose charisma compensated for their lack of classic good looks. By maintaining his stardom, Redford almost singlehandedly kept alive the image of the movie star as a diamond-bright alloy of glamour, celebrity, and erotic allure. He was able to accomplish this by exercising firm control over his career. Since Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, Redford has selected parts that he feels are compatible with his established screen persona, thus ensuring his popularity with movie audiences. He also has chosen to work with such directors as Michael Ritchie, George Roy Hill, and Sidney Pollack, who seem to best understand that persona, and know how to successfully convey it on-screen.

Perhaps Redford has been at his best playing opposite Newman, in Butch Cassidy and The Sting. Newman's presence seems to loosen up Redford, and their on-screen chemistry is the key ingredient which makes both films such satisfying entertainments. In these films, Redford adds a pleasingly wry wit to his characterizations. And in his better screen moments, he is effectively able to hint, via subtle nuance, at a more complex psychology hidden beneath his surface presence.

In recent years, Redford has transcended his identity as an actor. In the 1980s, he established the Sundance Institute for young filmmakers, with his Sundance Film Festival, a showcase for the year's newest independent films, evolving into one of the motion picture industry's higher-profile events. He also entered the directing arena in 1980, winning an Academy Award for his maiden effort, Ordinary People. It remains an impressive drama examining the brittle reality beneath the veneer of an outwardly typical upper-middle-class American family that has been torn apart by tragedy.

Unfortunately, none of Redford's subsequent directorial efforts have matched Ordinary People. The Milagro Beanfield War is set in a picturesque New Mexico town, mostly populated by poor and powerless Hispanics, that is about to be swallowed up by "progress" in the form of a fat-cat land developer. The result is at best pleasant and entertaining, enhanced by lyrical, wryly humorous moments, and at worst unnecessarily melodramatic. A River Runs through It is a much-too-taciturn drama about the relationships and opposing forces within another American family, this one an outdoors Montana household. Despite its wide acclaim, Quiz Show, an allegorical drama about the television quiz show scandals of the late 1950s, is wrought with oversimplifications and misstatements of fact.

The Horse Whisperer is perhaps Redford's best post-Ordinary People film, a sound, sensible drama about a young teenage girl and her horse, both of whom are traumatized after a horrible accident. The girl's mother, a worldly but never-quite-satisfied New York magazine editor, brings the two out west for the down-home therapy dispensed by the title character, a sage, weathered Montana rancher (played by Redford). At its core, The Horse Whisperer may be linked to Ordinary People and A River Runs through It as a story of the invisible walls that separate and alienate the members of an American family, with a spotlight on young people whose innocence is tainted by fate. In The Horse Whisperer, the antidote to this rift involves embracing a lifestyle that is simple, direct, and no-nonsense—one that, in fact, reflects on Redford's own passion for the American West.

A sense of social responsibility exists within Redford's more recent cinematic projects, from the subjects he has chosen for the films he has directed to his involvement with the Sundance Institute and his narrating and executive producing Michael Apted's Incident at Oglala. The latter is a potent documentary presenting evidence of the railroading of Leonard Peltier, the American Indian Movement activist convicted of killing a pair of FBI agents in 1975 at South Dakota's Pine Ridge Reservation. A number of Redford's earlier films work as examinations or exposes of inequities within the American system. The Candidate and All the President's Men deal with the seamy side of American politics. Brubaker uncovers corruption within the penal system. The Electric Horseman is a tract against crass commercialism and the exploitation of nature.

As one school of thought maintains, Redford's looks have been his albatross, limiting the directions in which a sizable talent might otherwise have taken him. Meanwhile, others argue that he is merely a competent actor with exceptional physical appeal. What remains indisputable is that, unlike hundreds (if not thousands) of other pretty boy actors, Redford has been no flavor of the month, a hot item one day and a has-been (or never-was) the next. He has maintained his stardom over several decades, which in and of itself is quite an accomplishment.

—Fiona Valentine, updated by Rob Edelman

Robert Redford

views updated May 23 2018

Robert Redford

When Robert Redford (born 1937) appeared in the 1969 hit motion picture Butch Cassidy and the Sun-dance Kid, he was already well on his way to becoming an American motion picture icon. Known for his good looks, intelligence and commercial success, Redford's successes in writing, directing and producing motion pictures, as well as his establishment of the Sundance Institute, has made him a household name throughout the world.

Charles Robert Redford, Jr. was born on August 18, 1937 in Santa Monica, California to Charles, Sr. and Martha (Hart) Redford. His father was a milkman who worked long hours in Redford's early years. After World War II, Redford's father got a job at the Standard Oil Company as an accountant and the family moved to nearby Van Nuys, California where Redford attended high school along with his brother, William. Redford was not happy in Van Nuys, which he called "a cultural mud sea, " and was soon engaging in activities designed to break the unending boredom and conformist attitudes he felt closing in around him. He climbed high buildings in the Hollywood area and stole hub caps off of automobiles.

Fortunately for Redford, he also excelled in athletics, and upon his graduation in the spring of 1955, he accepted a baseball scholarship from the University of Colorado in Boulder, Colorado. Although Redford seemed to have the world by the tail and a bright future, 1955 was also the year that his mother died suddenly. This shocked and stunned Redford deeply and it would take him years to come to terms with her death.

Early Academic Failure

Redford commenced his studies at the University of Colorado in late 1955, but he soon became disillusioned with college life. Although Redford joined a fraternity and tried to become interested in college curriculum he was uninterested by most of his courses with the exception of some art classes. He started skipping classes and practices and took up drinking as way to ease his unhappiness. It was for his drinking that he was kicked off of the team, losing his scholarship.

While Redford was at the University of Colorado, a friend suggested that he should travel to Europe. He moved to Los Angeles, California and began working in the nearby oil fields to pay his bills and save enough money to travel to France so that he could study painting. Once there, he hitchhiked from country to country and stayed in youth hostels. Redford eventually found a sympathetic teacher in Florence, Italy, but later when that teacher criticized him for his slow progress, he decided to return home.

Redford hitchhiked from the east coast of the United States back to Los Angeles where he became increasingly discouraged and began drinking heavily again. In 1958, Redford met Lola Jean Van Wagenen who was living in the same apartment building where he rented. A Mormon from Utah, Van Wagenen encouraged Redford to resume his study of the arts. Van Wagenen's effect on Redford was so profound that they were married on September 12, 1958 and she left college to travel with him to New York.

With a new outlook and encouragement from his wife, Redford moved to Brooklyn, New York to study painting at the Prat Institute late in 1958. Redford was aware that he might need a sideline career to fall back on in case painting did not pay the bills. He decided to study theatrical set design at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York as a sideline.

Starts Acting

Redford received complimentary reports on his designs and came to the attention of Mike Thoma, the stage manager for the Broadway comedy Tall Story which had opened on January 2, 1959. Thoma was responsible for recruiting replacements when actors left the cast. Thoma invited Redford to audition for a small part in the production. Redford auditioned and was hired on the spot. When Tall Story ended its run on May 2, 1959, the agent who had signed Redford recommended him for a role in The Highest Tree. The production opened on November 4, 1959 at the Longacre Theatre in New York City but ran only a few weeks. The experience was not a total loss for Redford, as he had found an occupation in which he was capable and enjoyed.

With the prospect of not being able to find another acting job until the next season opened in early 1960, Redford returned to Los Angeles to try his hand at television. Los Angeles was overflowing with acting jobs and Redford played half a dozen roles within six months. The most notable of these parts was as a Nazi lieutenant in In the Presence of Mine Enemies in 1960. In the autumn of 1960, Redford returned to New York to take part in a production of The Iceman Cometh. His first child, Shauna, was born shortly thereafter. Redford was then cast in a production of Little Moon of Alban which opened on December 1, 1960 but had only twenty performances.

Redford had his first leading role in a production of Sunday in New York on Broadway. It ran until May of 1962, but during breaks in the production Redford would appear with small parts on such television shows as Route 66, TheTwilight Zone, Alfred Hitchcock Presents and Naked City. He also made his motion picture debut in the 1962 film War Hunt, which was hailed by critics despite its low budget. Redford also became a father for the second time when his son, David James, was born.

Redford returned to California following the close of Sunday in New York to work in television. He was noticed by actor and comedian Mike Nichols who was to direct a production of Neil Simon's Barefoot in the Park. Nichols demanded that Redford be cast in the production and when it opened in New York on October 23, 1963, it was an overnight success. The tediousness of doing the same performance eight times a week soon bored Redford and he withdrew from the cast on September 5, 1964, never returning to the stage.

Early Movies

Instead of stage, Redford concentrated on motion pictures. His first four motion pictures were not very successful and a less determined actor might have given up. Redford stuck it out through 1965 with Situation Hopeless -But Not Serious, and Inside Daisy Clover, opposite Natalie Wood. Inside Daisy Clover earned him a Golden Globe award for the most promising male newcomer. The 1966 films The Chase and This Property Is Condemned were not received much better by critics or the public, so Redford decided to vacation with his family in Spain and Crete until the right role came along.

Redford returned to Hollywood to do a film version of Barefoot in the Park. His performance was widely hailed and earned him a spot in what was to become one of his greatest successes, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.

Mainstream Success

After negotiations with three other well-known actors failed, Redford was offered the part of the Sundance Kid opposite Paul Newman in 1969. Initially rejected by the head of Twentieth Century-Fox for the role, Redford worked and made it his own. Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid became one of the most successful westerns of all time and made Redford a household name. The movie is widely regarded as one of the pinnacle motion pictures about the American west and the men who lived in and through it. It won four Academy Awards and made Redford a bankable movie star.

Hoping to cash in on Redford's success in Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, Paramount hurried Downhill Racer into theaters in November 1969. Redford starred in and co-produced the motion picture and, although it was hailed by critics, the public did not react as strongly as the had to Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. The same fate awaited Tell Them Willie Boy Is Here, which had been rushed into theaters in December 1969. Redford's role as a good samaritan cowboy earned him the British Film Academy's 1970 award for best actor and in May of that year his daughter, Amy Hart, was born.

Redford made The Hot Rock and The Candidate in 1972, but it was the last of the films he made that year, Jeremiah Johnson, that remains his favorite of his own films. The film, the story of a trapper trying to survive in the Utah wilderness of the nineteenth century, was initiated by Redford in his search for good roles. The Way We Were, a story concerning the Hollywood witch-hunts of the 1950s, followed in 1973. That year also saw his reunion with Newman in The Sting. The story of two gangsters out for revenge in the 1930s in Chicago earned the motion picture seven Academy Award nominations and Redford his first nomination for best actor.

Redford followed up with The Great Gatsby, the motion picture adaptation of the F. Scott Fitzgerald novel, in 1974. He acted in The Great Waldo Pepper and Three Days of the Condor in 1975 before making one of his most acclaimed motion pictures, All the President's Men, in 1976. Redford took an active part in the movie by convincing Watergate reporters Carl Bernstein and Bob Woodward to write a motion picture script relating their experiences during the last days of Richard Nixon's presidency instead of a book. All the President's Men was awarded four Academy Awards and was second on the list of top ten money-makers for that year.

Redford had only a small role in the 1977 film A Bridge Too Far, opting to spend more time with his family. It was not until The Electric Horseman (1979) that he returned to play a leading role in a motion picture. His ever-growing social conscience was evident in Brubaker (1980). This motion picture was seen by many critics as more of a lecture on social politics than as entertainment, but Redford rebounded with one of his greatest accomplishments on film, Ordinary People.

Released in 1980, Ordinary People, was the story of a suburban family whose life unravels following the death of a child. Redford had made the transition from actor to director, and would be rewarded highly for his efforts. He received the Director's Guild of America Award for the outstanding motion picture director of 1980, an Academy Award for the best director of 1980, the National Board of Review Award for best director of 1981 and a Golden Globe Award for the best director of 1981 for his direction in Ordinary People.

Founded Sundance Institute

In 1981, Redford founded the Sundance Institute near his summer home in Utah to help promote the art of motion picture making and to provide financial funding for artists developing unique visions of their own. The Institute, named after the role that made Redford famous, has since expanded to incorporate a yearly film festival and a theater company that produces original works.

Redford returned to motion pictures in 1984 with his role as an aging baseball player in The Natural. He acted in the 1985 Academy Award winner for best picture, Out of Africa, but told New York that this experience ranked among the least satisfying of his career. After that, with a divorce from his wife later that year, his movie roles became less frequent. He appeared in only six motion pictures, Legal Eagles (1986), Havana (1991), Sneakers (1992), Indecent Proposal (1993), Up Close And Personal (1996), and The Horse Whisperer (1998), over the next twelve years.

Instead, he concentrated his efforts more on creating and directing quality motion pictures for other actors. He directed The Milagro Beanfield War in 1988, A River Runs Through It, in 1992, and Quiz Show, (1994), which won him the Cecil B. DeMille Award for best picture and established the Sundance Institute as a creative force in the motion picture industry. For all of his efforts in promoting the art of movie making and for his achievements in film, he was awarded the 1995 Screen Actors Guild Lifetime Achievement Award.

Further Reading

Authors & Artists for Young Adults, volume 15, Gale Research, 1995.

Contemporary Authors, volume 107, Gale Research, 1983.

Entertainment Weekly, Fall 1996; September 5, 1997.

Interview, September 1994; January 1997.

McCall's, April 1996.

New York, December 10, 1990.

Premiere, February 1998.

Rolling Stone, October 6, 1994.

"Celebsite: Robert Redford, " CelebSite, (March 18, 1998).

"E! Online -Fact Sheet -Robert Redford, " E! Online, (March 18, 1998).

"Robert Redford, " The Network for Entertainment Fans——Index, (March 18, 1998).

Sundance Institute, (March 18, 1998).

Redford, Robert

views updated May 21 2018

Redford, Robert (1937– ) US film actor, director, and producer. Redford shot to fame appearing opposite Paul Newman in Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969). His popularity increased with films such as The Candidate (1982) and All the President's Men (1976). Redford won an Academy Award for his directorial debut Ordinary People (1980). Other films include A River Runs Through It (1992) and Quiz Show (1994).

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