Gene Callahan

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Gene Callahan (November 7, 1923—December 26, 1990) was an American art director as well as set and production designer who contributed to over fifty films and more than a thousand TV episodes. He received nominations for the British Academy Film Award and four Oscars, including two wins (in 1962 and 1964).

United States Federal republic in North America

The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States or America, is a country composed of 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, and various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is slightly smaller than the entire continent of Europe's 3.9 million square miles. With a population of over 327 million people, the U.S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D.C., and the largest city by population is New York City. Forty-eight states and the capital's federal district are contiguous in North America between Canada and Mexico. The State of Alaska is in the northwest corner of North America, bordered by Canada to the east and across the Bering Strait from Russia to the west. The State of Hawaii is an archipelago in the mid-Pacific Ocean. The U.S. territories are scattered about the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, stretching across nine official time zones. The extremely diverse geography, climate, and wildlife of the United States make it one of the world's 17 megadiverse countries.

In film and television, a production designer (PD) is the person responsible for the overall visual look of the production. Production designers have a key creative role in the creation of motion pictures and television. Working directly with the director, cinematographer, and producer, they must select the settings and style to visually tell the story. The term production designer was coined by William Cameron Menzies while he was working on the film Gone with the Wind. Previously the people with the same responsibilities were called art directors. It is sometimes also described as scenic design or set design.

Academy Awards American awards given annually for excellence in cinematic achievements

The Academy Awards, also known as the Oscars, are a set of awards for artistic and technical merit in the film industry. Given annually by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS), the awards are an international recognition of excellence in cinematic achievements as assessed by the Academy's voting membership. The various category winners are awarded a copy of a golden statuette, officially called the "Academy Award of Merit", although more commonly referred to by its nickname "Oscar".

A native of Louisiana, Eugene F. Callahan had a lifelong association with the state. He kept a home in the capital, Baton Rouge, where he began his designing career in the 1940s as a student at Louisiana State University, and his penultimate film assignment was as production designer on Steel Magnolias , lensed in Natchitoches in 1989.

Louisiana State of the United States of America

Louisiana is a state in the Deep South region of the South Central United States. It is the 31st most extensive and the 25th most populous of the 50 United States. Louisiana is bordered by the state of Texas to the west, Arkansas to the north, Mississippi to the east, and the Gulf of Mexico to the south. A large part of its eastern boundary is demarcated by the Mississippi River. Louisiana is the only U.S. state with political subdivisions termed parishes, which are equivalent to counties. The state's capital is Baton Rouge, and its largest city is New Orleans.

Louisiana State University university in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA

Louisiana State University is a public research university in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. The university was founded in 1853 in what is now known as Pineville, Louisiana, under the name Louisiana State Seminary of Learning & Military Academy. The current LSU main campus was dedicated in 1926, consists of more than 250 buildings constructed in the style of Italian Renaissance architect Andrea Palladio, and occupies a 650-acre (2.6 km²) plateau on the banks of the Mississippi River.

Natchitoches, Louisiana City in Louisiana, United States

Natchitoches is a small city and the parish seat of Natchitoches Parish, Louisiana, United States. Established in 1714 by Louis Juchereau de St. Denis as part of French Louisiana, the community was named after the indigenous Natchitoches people.

Callahan was a prolific contributor to early television, starting with the first full-schedule broadcast season in 1948–49. He worked on numerous live shows during TV's Golden Age and continued with filmed episodes through the late 1950s and early 60s. His first film as set decorator was 1959's The Fugitive Kind , and his fourth assignment, 1961's black-and-white The Hustler brought him his first Academy Award. 1964 was a banner year for him with two Oscar nominations The Cardinal in the color category and America America in the category of black-and-white films, with the latter winning him his second Oscar. Unlike the 1962 win for The Hustler, which he shared with production designer Harry Horner or his shared nomination for The Cardinal with production designer Lyle R. Wheeler, the award for America America, was his alone. Elia Kazan's acclaimed epic set in turn-of-the-century Greece and Turkey was nominated for Best Picture and Best Director, but it was Callahan's epic production values that won the film's only Oscar.

Golden Age of Television era of live television production in the United States, roughly from the late 1940s to the late 1950s

The first Golden Age of Television is the era of live television production in the United States, roughly from the late 1940s through the late 1950s. According to The Television Industry: A Historical Dictionary, "the Golden Age opened with Kraft Television Theatre on May 7, 1947, and ended with the last live show in the Playhouse 90 series in 1957;" the Golden Age is universally recognized to have ended by 1960, as the television audience and programming had shifted to less critically acclaimed fare, almost all of it taped or filmed.

<i>The Fugitive Kind</i> 1959 film by Sidney Lumet

The Fugitive Kind is a 1960 American drama film starring Marlon Brando and Anna Magnani, and directed by Sidney Lumet. The screenplay by Meade Roberts and Tennessee Williams was based on the latter's 1957 play Orpheus Descending, itself a revision of his unproduced 1940 work Battle of Angels.

<i>The Hustler</i> (film) 1961 film by Robert Rossen

The Hustler is a 1961 American CinemaScope drama film directed by Robert Rossen from Walter Tevis's 1959 novel of the same name, adapted for the screen by Rossen and Sidney Carroll. It tells the story of small-time pool hustler "Fast Eddie" Felson and his desire to break into the "major league" of professional hustling and high-stakes wagering by high-rollers that follows it. He throws his raw talent and ambition up against the best player in the country, seeking to best the legendary pool player "Minnesota Fats". After initially losing to Fats and getting involved with unscrupulous manager Bert Gordon, Eddie returns to try again, but only after paying a terrible personal price.

Gene Callahan's professional relationship with Elia Kazan began two years before America America and extended to four of Kazan's final five films. The first title, 1961's Splendor in the Grass , which introduced Warren Beatty to the screen and won an Oscar for William Inge's screenplay, credited Callahan as the set decorator. Eight years later, he was the production designer for Kazan's next film after America, America, 1969's The Arrangement , which received almost entirely negative reviews and no Oscar nominations. He did not work on Kazan's next production, 1972's The Visitors , another poorly accepted title, but five years later, in 1977, there was one more Oscar nomination for Gene Callahan. The Last Tycoon , Elia Kazan's final directorial effort assigned him the task of recreating 1920s Hollywood as it was portrayed in F. Scott Fitzgerald's last, unfinished novel which reimagined the period setting and its driven, doomed protagonist, an Irving Thalberg-like movie producer, portrayed by Robert De Niro. The nomination (shared with art director Jack T. Collis and set decorator Jerry Wunderlich) was the only one given by the Academy to the film, which in addition to a mixture of good, tepid and negative reviews, was burdened by weak publicity and box office returns.

<i>Splendor in the Grass</i> 1961 film by Elia Kazan

Splendor in the Grass is a 1961 American Technicolor drama film that tells a story of a teenage girl navigating her feelings of sexual repression, love, and heartbreak. Written by William Inge, who appears briefly as a Protestant clergyman and who won an Oscar for his screenplay, the film was directed by Elia Kazan and features a score by jazz composer David Amram.

Warren Beatty American actor, producer, screenwriter and director

Henry Warren Beatty is an American actor and filmmaker. He has been nominated for fourteen Academy Awards – four for Best Actor, four for Best Picture, two for Best Director, three for Original Screenplay, and one for Adapted Screenplay – winning Best Director for Reds (1981). Beatty is the only person to have been nominated for acting in, directing, writing, and producing the same film, and he did so twice: first for Heaven Can Wait, and again with Reds.

The Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay is the Academy Award for the best screenplay not based upon previously published material. It was created in 1940 as a separate writing award from the Academy Award for Best Story. Beginning with the Oscars for 1957, the two categories were combined to honor only the screenplay. In 2002, the name of the award was changed from Writing to Writing .

Gene Callahan died of a heart attack at his home in Baton Rouge, seven weeks after his 67th birthday. His final film, The Man in the Moon , a touching coming-of-age story filmed, as in the case of Steel Magnolias, in Natchitoches as well as Louisiana's Kisatchie National Forest, was released in October 1991, nearly a year after his death.

<i>The Man in the Moon</i> 1991 film by Robert Mulligan

The Man in the Moon is a 1991 American coming of age drama film directed by Robert Mulligan and is also Reese Witherspoon's film debut.

Kisatchie National Forest

Kisatchie National Forest, the only National forest in Louisiana, United States, is located in the forested piney hills and hardwood bottoms of seven central and northern parishes. It is part of the Cenozoic uplands and has large areas of longleaf pine forests. It is one of the largest pieces of natural landscape in Louisiana, with some 604,000 acres (2,440 km2) of public land, more than half of which is vital longleaf pine and flatwoods vegetation. These support many rare plant and animal species. There are also rare habitats, such as hillside seepage bogs and calcareous prairies. The forest also contains and provides a buffer for the Kisatchie Hills Wilderness, a nationally designated wilderness area that contributes to protecting biodiversity of the coastal plain region of the United States.

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