Stanley Kubrick developed a keen interest in cinema during his teenage years. He would prefer watching movies at the local theaters than attending classes. The New York-born filmmaker also developed a passion for strategies by playing chess and for visual arts by taking photos, which landed him on a job as a photographer for Look magazine at the age of 17. He worked there for several years, allowing him to travel all over the United States with his work.
Kubrick tried attending as much movie screenings as he could. He became a voracious moviegoer who would always find time for movies amidst his busy schedule.
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Going to College
Although Stanley Kubrick graduated in high school, his poor grades didn’t give him a good edge in the very competitive college admissions. It was also a time when there was a high demand for college admissions from soldiers returning from World War II.
Amidst getting problems with continuing his college education due to his poor academic performance in high school, he was able to briefly attend evening classes at the City College of New York (CCNY) in 1946. Back then, he wasn’t able to gain admission to day session classes in many colleges. Apart from becoming a staff photographer for Look magazine, he also started looking for more jobs as a freelance photographer. He tried supplementing his income by playing chess for money at the Marshal and Manhattan clubs and the Washington Square Park in Greenwich Village.
Becoming a Director
In 1951, the 23-year old Kubrick began to dream of becoming a filmmaker. He typically saw run-of-the-mill Hollywood films about eight times a week, and according to him, most of them were always bad. For all the years he was immersing himself with movies, he carefully watched even the poorly made ones, which even sparked his interest in filmmaking further. He had that feeling that he himself could not do a film any worse than the ones he actually saw; and in fact, he deeply felt that he could do them a lot better.
In the same year, he used his own savings to finance his first film entitled Day of the Fight, a 13-minute documentary about the boxer Walter Cartier. The film was the result of the suggestion coming from Kubrick’s friend Alex Singer who persuaded him to start making short documentaries for The March of Time, a provider of newsreels to movie theatres.
Kubrick acted as producer, director, and cinematographer for the film. As a photographer starting out with his first project as an independent filmmaker, he would usually meet Cartier while shooting a magazine photo assignment. He was able to utilize his background as a photographer when he started exploring the world of filmmaking. Since he had no formal filmmaking background, he was only taught how to use the camera by the man who rented the equipment to him.
“Stanley Kubrick,” Biography.com.
“Stanley Kubrick Biography,” The Biography Channel.
“Stanley Kubrick Biography,” FilmMakers Magazine.
“Stanley Kubrick,” Prodigy.com.
“Biography for Stanley Kubrick,” IMDb.
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