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Birthday of Samuel Fuller, 1912

Updated: Dec 4, 2020


On This Day in Jewish History: August 12th, 1912

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#onthisday, August 12th, 1912 - legendary filmmaker, writer and director Samuel Fuller was born in Massachusetts.

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When he was thirteen years old he left school to work as a copy boy for The NY Journal for editor Arthur Brisbane. By the age of 17, he became a crime journalist for the San Diego Sun. In his 20’s he wrote three novels and began writing screenplays for a musical.

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When WW2 broke out he was drafted to the army and served in the Army’s 1st Infantry Division. He served overseas in North Africa and Italy and was in the third wave of soldiers who landed on Omaha Beach on D-Day. For his service he was awarded the Silver Star, the Bronze Star, and the Purple Heart.

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Much of the material for his later work came from his experience in the army.

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When the war ended, Fuller returned to Hollywood and began a long career as a screenwriter and director. In 1949, he made his debut as a director for the film "I Shot Jesse James."

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In 1951, the "Steel Helmet" debuted. Fuller’s first war movie taking place during the Korean War. This was the first movie to show the internment of Japanese in the US in WW2. It sparked much debate and criticism, some even saying he created anti-American propaganda.

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The movie was shot in only 10 days and it caught the attention of 20th Century Fox. They produced seven of his movies ranging from "Run of the Arrow", based on a Confederate soldier who joins a Native American Tribe, to "House of Bamboo", a crime story which set in Japan.

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One of his movies, "Verboten!" had real footage taken by the Nazis in concentration camps. In 1980, Fuller released "The Big Red One", an autobiographical account of his old unit in WW2.

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Fuller’s movies are often considered primitive and crude but he still greatly influenced filmmakers, fellow Jews, and American society due to his incorporation of topics usually ignored by most of Hollywood.

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Fuller passed away in Hollywood on October 30, 1997 and his autobiography, "A Third Face: My Tale of Writing, Fighting, and Filmmaking", was published posthumously.

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Text Source: https://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/fuller-samuel-michael

Image Source: https://www.sensesofcinema.com/2014/great-directors/samuel-fuller/


✍: @rebeccaroth01

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#judaism#jewish#history#jewishhistory#jewishhistoryfanatics#onthisday#cinema#otdjh#moviefanatics#hollywood


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