|Born||November 30, 1947|
Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
|Alma mater||Goddard College|
|Notable works|| The Duck Variations (1971)|
Sexual Perversity in Chicago (1974)
Glengarry Glen Ross (1983)
(m. 1977;div. 1990)
(m. after 1991)
|Children||4; including Zosia and Clara|
David Alan Mamet ( // ; born November 30, 1947) is an American playwright, film director, screenwriter and author. He won a Pulitzer Prize and received Tony nominations for his plays Glengarry Glen Ross (1984) and Speed-the-Plow (1988). He first gained critical acclaim for a trio of off-Broadway 1970s plays: The Duck Variations, Sexual Perversity in Chicago, and American Buffalo. His plays Race and The Penitent , respectively, opened on Broadway in 2009 and previewed off-Broadway in 2017.
Feature films that Mamet both wrote and directed include House of Games (1987), Homicide (1991), The Spanish Prisoner (1997) and his biggest commercial success Heist (2001). His screenwriting credits include The Postman Always Rings Twice (1981), The Verdict (1982), The Untouchables (1987), Hoffa (1992), Wag the Dog (1997), and Hannibal (2001). Mamet himself wrote the screenplay for the 1992 adaptation of Glengarry Glen Ross , and wrote and directed the 1994 adaptation of his play Oleanna (1992). He was the executive producer and frequent writer for the TV show The Unit (2006–2009).
Mamet's books include: On Directing Film (1991), a commentary and dialogue about film-making; The Old Religion (1997), a novel about the lynching of Leo Frank; Five Cities of Refuge: Weekly Reflections on Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy (2004), a Torah commentary with Rabbi Lawrence Kushner; The Wicked Son (2006), a study of Jewish self-hatred and antisemitism; Bambi vs. Godzilla, a commentary on the movie business; The Secret Knowledge: On the Dismantling of American Culture (2011), a commentary on cultural and political issues; and Three War Stories (2013), a trio of novellas about the physical and psychological effects of war.
Mamet was born in 1947 in Chicago to Lenore June (née Silver), a teacher, and Bernard Morris Mamet, a labor attorney. His family was Jewish. His paternal grandparents were Polish Jews.One of Mamet's earliest jobs was as a busboy at Chicago's London House and The Second City. He also worked as an actor, editor for Oui magazine and as a cab-driver. He was educated at the progressive Francis W. Parker School and at Goddard College in Plainfield, Vermont. At the Chicago Public Library Foundation 20th anniversary fundraiser in 2006, though, Mamet announced "My alma mater is the Chicago Public Library. I got what little educational foundation I got in the third-floor reading room, under the tutelage of a Coca-Cola sign".
After a move to Chicago's North Side, Mamet encountered theater director Robert Sickinger, and began to work occasionally at Sickinger's Hull House Theatre. This represented the beginning of Mamet's lifelong involvement with the theater.
Mamet is a founding member of the Atlantic Theater Company; he first gained acclaim for a trio of off-Broadway plays in 1976, The Duck Variations, Sexual Perversity in Chicago, and American Buffalo.He was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in 1984 for Glengarry Glen Ross, which received its first Broadway revival in the summer of 2005. His play Race , which opened on Broadway on December 6, 2009 and featured James Spader, David Alan Grier, Kerry Washington, and Richard Thomas in the cast, received mixed reviews. His play The Anarchist, starring Patti LuPone and Debra Winger, in her Broadway debut, opened on Broadway on November 13, 2012 in previews and was scheduled to close on December 16, 2012. His 2017 play The Penitent previewed off-Broadway on February 8, 2017.
In 2002, Mamet was inducted into the American Theater Hall of Fame.Mamet later received the PEN/Laura Pels Theater Award for Grand Master of American Theater in 2010.
In 2017, Mamet released an online class for writers entitled David Mamet teaches dramatic writing.
In 2019 Mamet returned to the London West End with a new play Bitter Wheat, at the Garrick Theatre, starring John Malkovich.
Mamet's first film work was as a screenwriter, later directing his own scripts.
Mamet's first produced screenplay was the 1981 production of The Postman Always Rings Twice , based on James M. Cain's novel. He received an Academy Award nomination one year later for the 1982 legal drama, The Verdict . He also wrote the screenplays for The Untouchables (1987), Hoffa (1992), The Edge (1997), Wag the Dog (1997), Ronin (1998), and Hannibal (2001). He received a second Academy Award nomination for Wag the Dog.
In 1987, Mamet made his film directing debut with his screenplay House of Games , which won Best Film and Best Screenplay awards at the 1987 Venice Film Festival and the Film of the Year in 1989 from the London Film Critics' Circle Awards. The film starred his then-wife, Lindsay Crouse, and many longtime stage associates and friends, including fellow Goddard College graduates. [ citation needed ] After House of Games, Mamet later wrote and directed two more films focusing on the world of con artists, The Spanish Prisoner (1997) and Heist (2001). Among those films, Heist enjoyed the biggest commercial success.Mamet was quoted as saying, "It was my first film as a director and I needed support, so I stacked the deck."
Other films that Mamet both wrote and directed include: Things Change (1988), Homicide (1991) (nominated for the Palme d'Or at 1991 Cannes Film Festival and won a "Screenwriter of the Year" award for Mamet from the London Film Critics' Circle Awards), Oleanna (1994), The Winslow Boy (1999), State and Main (2000), Spartan (2004), Redbelt (2008), and the 2013 bio-pic TV movie Phil Spector .
A feature-length film, a thriller titled Blackbird, was intended for release in 2015, but is still in development.
When Mamet adapted his play for the 1992 film Glengarry Glen Ross , he wrote an additional part (including the monologue "Coffee's for closers") for Alec Baldwin.
Mamet continues to work with an informal repertory company for his films, including Crouse, William H. Macy, Joe Mantegna, and Rebecca Pidgeon, as well as the aforementioned school friends.
David did a rewrite of the script for Ronin under the pseudonym "Richard Weisz" and turned in an early version of a script for Malcolm X which was rejected by director Spike Lee.In 2000, Mamet directed a film version of Catastrophe, a one-act play by Samuel Beckett featuring Harold Pinter and John Gielgud (in his final screen performance). In 2008, he directed and wrote the mixed martial arts movie Redbelt, about a martial arts instructor tricked into fighting in a professional bout.
In On Directing Film , Mamet asserts that directors should focus on getting the point of a scene across, rather than simply following a protagonist, or adding visually beautiful or intriguing shots. Films should create order from disorder in search of the objective.
In 1986 Mamet published “Writing in Restaurants” a collection of essays. In 1990 Mamet published The Hero Pony, a 55-page collection of poetry. He has also published a series of short plays, monologues and four novels, The Village (1994), The Old Religion (1997), Wilson: A Consideration of the Sources (2000), and Chicago (2018). He has written several non-fiction texts, and children's stories, including "True and False: Heresy and Common Sense for the Actor"(1997). In 2004 he published a lauded version of the classical Faust story, Faustus, however, when the play was staged in San Francisco during the spring of 2004, it was not well received by critics.On May 1, 2010, Mamet released a graphic novel The Trials of Roderick Spode (The Human Ant).
On June 2, 2011, The Secret Knowledge: On the Dismantling of American Culture, Mamet's book detailing his conversion from modern liberalism to "a reformed liberal" was released.
Mamet published Three War Stories, a collection of novellas, on November 11, 2013.
On December 3, 2019, Mamet was set to publish a novel, The Diary of a Porn Star by Priscilla Wriston-Ranger: As Told to David Mamet With an Afterword by Mr. Mamet.
Mamet wrote one episode of Hill Street Blues , "A Wasted Weekend", that aired in 1987. His then-wife, Lindsay Crouse, appeared in numerous episodes (including that one) as Officer McBride. Mamet is also the creator, producer and frequent writer of the television series The Unit , where he wrote a well-circulated memo to the writing staff. He directed a third-season episode of The Shield with Shawn Ryan. In 2007, Mamet directed two television commercials for Ford Motor Company. The two 30-second ads featured the Ford Edge and were filmed in Mamet's signature style of fast-paced dialogue and clear, simple imagery. Mamet's sister, Lynn, is a producer and writer for television shows, such as The Unit and Law & Order.
Mamet has contributed several dramas to BBC Radio through Jarvis & Ayres Productions, including an adaptation of Glengarry Glen Ross for BBC Radio 3 and new dramas for BBC Radio 4. The comedy Keep Your Pantheon (or On the Whole I'd Rather Be in Mesopotamia) was aired in 2007. The Christopher Boy's Communion was another Jarvis & Ayres production, first broadcast on BBC Radio 4 on March 8, 2021.
Since May 2005 he has been a contributing blogger at The Huffington Post , drawing satirical cartoons with themes including political strife in Israel.In a 2008 essay at The Village Voice titled "Why I Am No Longer a 'Brain-Dead Liberal'" he revealed that he had gradually rejected so-called political correctness and progressivism and embraced conservatism. Mamet has spoken in interviews of changes in his views, highlighting his agreement with free market theorists such as Friedrich Hayek the historian Paul Johnson, and economist Thomas Sowell, whom Mamet called "one of our greatest minds".
During promotion of a book, Mamet said British people had "a taint of anti-semitism," claiming they "want to give [Israel] away to some people whose claim is rather dubious."In the same interview, Mamet went on to say that "there are famous dramatists and novelists [in the UK] whose works are full of anti-Semitic filth." He refused to give examples because of British libel laws (the interview was conducted in New York City for the Financial Times ). He is known for his pro-Israel positions; in his book The Secret Knowledge he claimed that "Israelis would like to live in peace within their borders; the Arabs would like to kill them all."
Mamet wrote an article for the November 2012 issue of The Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles imploring fellow Jewish Americans to vote for Republican nominee Mitt Romney.
In an essay for Newsweek , published on January 29, 2013, Mamet argued against gun control laws: "It was intended to guard us against this inevitable decay of government that the Constitution was written. Its purpose was and is not to enthrone a Government superior to an imperfect and confused electorate, but to protect us from such a government."
Mamet has described the NFL anthem protests as "absolutely fucking despicable".In a 2020 interview, he described Donald Trump as a "great president" and supported his re-election.
Mamet is a contributing editor to Flying magazine.
Mamet's style of writing dialogue, marked by a cynical, street-smart edge, precisely crafted for effect, is so distinctive that it has come to be called Mamet speak.Mamet himself has criticized his (and other writers') tendency to write "pretty" at the expense of sound, logical plots. When asked how he developed his style for writing dialogue, Mamet said, "In my family, in the days prior to television, we liked to while away the evenings by making ourselves miserable, based solely on our ability to speak the language viciously. That's probably where my ability was honed."
One instance of Mamet's dialogue style can be found in Glengarry Glen Ross , in which two down-on-their-luck real estate salesmen are considering stealing from their employer's office. George Aaronow and Dave Moss equivocate on the meaning of "talk" and "speak", turning language and meaning to deceptive purposes:
Mamet dedicated Glengarry Glen Ross to Harold Pinter, who was instrumental in its being first staged at the Royal National Theatre, (London) in 1983, and whom Mamet has acknowledged as an influence on its success, and on his other work.
Mamet's plays have frequently sparked debate and controversy.Following a 1992 staging of Oleanna , a play in which a college student accuses her professor of trying to rape her, a critic reported that the play divided the audience by gender and recounted that "couples emerged screaming at each other".
In his 2014 book David Mamet and Male Friendship, Arthur Holmberg examined Mamet's portrayal of male friendships, especially focusing on the contradictions and ambiguities of male bonding as dramatized in Mamet's plays and films.
|1977||Drama Desk Award||Outstanding Play||American Buffalo||Nominated|
|New York Drama Critics' Circle||Best American Play||Won|
|Drama Desk Award||Outstanding Play||The Water Engine||Nominated|
|1984||Glengarry Glen Ross||Nominated|
|Tony Award||Best Play||Nominated|
|New York Drama Critics' Circle||Best American Play||Won|
|1988||Drama Desk Award||Outstanding Play||Speed-the-Plow||Nominated|
|Tony Award||Best Play||Nominated|
|Drama Desk Award||Outstanding Play||Oleanna||Nominated|
|Academy Award||Best Adapted Screenplay||The Verdict||Nominated|
|Golden Globe Award||Best Screenplay||Nominated|
|Golden Globe Award||House of Games||Nominated|
|1997||Golden Globe Award||Wag the Dog||Nominated|
|Academy Award||Best Adapted Screenplay||Nominated|
|BAFTA Award||Best Adapted Screenplay||Nominated|
|2013||Primetime Emmy Award||Outstanding Miniseries or Movie||Phil Spector||Nominated|
|Outstanding Directing for a Limited Series, Movie, or Dramatic Special||Nominated|
|Outstanding Writing for a Limited Series, Movie, or Dramatic Special||Nominated|
Mamet and actress Lindsay Crouse married in 1977 and divorced in 1990. The couple have two children, Willa and Zosia. Willa was a professional photographer and is now a singer/songwriter;Zosia is an actress. Mamet has been married to actress and singer-songwriter Rebecca Pidgeon since 1991. They live together in Santa Monica, California. They have two children, Clara and Noah.
Mamet is a Reform Jew and strongly pro-Israel.
The papers of David Mamet were sold to the Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas at Austin in 2007 and first opened for research in 2009.The growing collection consists mainly of manuscripts and related production materials for most of his plays, films, and other writings, but also includes his personal journals from 1966 to 2005. In 2015, the Ransom Center secured a second major addition to Mamet's papers, including more recent works. Additional materials relating to Mamet and his career can be found in the Ransom Center's collections of Robert De Niro, Mel Gussow, Tom Stoppard, Sam Shepard, Paul Schrader, Don DeLillo, and John Russell Brown.
Mamet is credited as writer of these works except where noted. Credits in addition to writer also noted.
Rebecca Pidgeon is an American actress, singer, and songwriter. She has maintained a recording career while also acting on stage and in feature films. She is married to American playwright David Mamet.
William Hall Macy Jr. is an American actor. His film career has been built on appearances in small, independent films, though he has also appeared in action films. Macy has described himself as "sort of a Middle American, WASPy, Lutheran kind of guy... Everyman". Macy has won two Emmy Awards and four Screen Actors Guild Awards, as well as a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his performance in Fargo. From 2011 to 2021, he has played Frank Gallagher, a main character in Shameless, the Showtime adaptation of the British television series. Macy has been married to Felicity Huffman since 1997.
Joseph Anthony Mantegna is an American actor, producer, and director.
Glengarry Glen Ross is a play by David Mamet that won the Pulitzer Prize in 1984. The play shows parts of two days in the lives of four desperate Chicago real estate agents who are prepared to engage in any number of unethical, illegal acts—from lies and flattery to bribery, threats, intimidation and burglary—to sell undesirable real estate to unwitting prospective buyers. It is based on Mamet's experience having previously worked in a similar office.
Richard Roma is a fictional character from David Mamet's 1983 play Glengarry Glen Ross and its 1992 film adaptation. Roma has been portrayed by a range of actors, including Joe Mantegna, Al Pacino and Liev Schreiber, although the role was originated by Jack Shepherd.
Lindsay Ann Crouse is an American actress. She made her Broadway debut in the 1972 revival of Much Ado About Nothing and appeared in her first film in 1976 in All the President's Men. For her role in the 1984 film Places in the Heart, she received an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress. Her other films include Slap Shot (1977), Between the Lines (1977), The Verdict (1982), Prefontaine (1997), and The Insider (1999). She also had a leading role in the 1987 film House of Games, which was directed by her then-husband David Mamet. In 1996, she received a Daytime Emmy Award nomination for "Between Mother and Daughter", an episode of CBS Schoolbreak Special. She is also a Grammy Award nominee.
Joseph Mantello is an American actor and director best known for his work on Broadway productions of Wicked, Take Me Out and Assassins, as well as earlier in his career being one of the original Broadway cast members of Angels in America.
Lakeboat is a semi-autobiographical play by David Mamet, written in 1970 and first produced in 1980.
Glengarry Glen Ross is a 1992 American drama film adapted by David Mamet from his 1984 Pulitzer Prize–winning play of the same name, and directed by James Foley. The film depicts two days in the lives of four real estate salesmen and how desperate they become when the corporate office sends a trainer to "motivate" them. He tells them that, in a week's time, all except the top two salesmen will be fired.
Gordon Clapp is an American actor, best known for portraying the role of Det. Greg Medavoy for all 12 seasons on the television series NYPD Blue, winning an Emmy Award in 1998.
Oleanna is a 1992 two-character play by David Mamet, about the power struggle between a university professor and one of his female students, who accuses him of sexual harassment and, by doing so, spoils his chances of being accorded tenure. The play's title, taken from a folk song, refers to a 19th-century escapist vision of utopia. Mamet adapted his play into a 1994 film of the same name.
Theater in Chicago describes not only theater performed in Chicago, Illinois, but also to the movement in Chicago that saw a number of small, meagerly funded companies grow to institutions of national and international significance. Chicago had long been a popular destination for touring productions, as well as original productions that transfer to Broadway and other cities. According to Variety editor Gordon Cox, beside New York City, Chicago has one of the most lively theater scenes in the United States. As many as 100 shows could be seen any given night from 200 companies as of 2018, some with national reputations and many in creative "storefront" theaters, demonstrating a vibrant theater scene "from the ground up". According to American Theatre magazine, Chicago's theater is "justly legendary".
Derek John Newark was an English actor in television, film and theatre.
Gregory Mosher is a longtime director and producer of stage productions at the Lincoln Center and Goodman Theatres, on and off-Broadway, at the Royal National Theatre, and in the West End. He is also a film director and television director, producer, and writer. He currently chairs the Theatre Department at Hunter College.
James Foley is an American film director. His 1986 film At Close Range was entered into the 36th Berlin International Film Festival. Other films he has directed include Glengarry Glen Ross, based on the play of the same name by David Mamet, and The Chamber, based on the novel of the same name by author John Grisham. He also directed the two sequels to Fifty Shades of Grey: Fifty Shades Darker (2017) and Fifty Shades Freed (2018).
Manu Narayan is an American actor, film producer, singer, songwriter, composer and saxophonist. He served as a Trustee of Carnegie Mellon University, his alma mater, from 2013-2016.
Michael Nussbaum is an American actor and director.
Oleanna is a 1994 drama film written and directed by David Mamet based on his 1992 play and starring William H. Macy and Debra Eisenstadt. The film was nominated for the Independent Spirit Award for Best Male Lead.
J.J. Johnston is an American theatre and film actor and boxing historian and writer.
The Anarchist is a two-person 2012 play by David Mamet that opened in New York on Broadway and starred Patti LuPone and Debra Winger. The "anarchist" of the title has its origin related to and perhaps based upon members of the Weather Underground, Judith Clark and Kathy Boudin, former members of the Weather Underground, who took part in the Brink's robbery (1981).
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to David Mamet .|
|Wikiquote has quotations related to: David Mamet|