With actor Kirk Douglas also producing Spartacus, he offered Stanley Kubrick, also his director for his 1957 film Paths of Glory, to direct Spartacus after the original director Anthony Mann was out of the production just after two weeks of production. Spartacus‘ huge success further earned Kubrick a secured place in the industry.
Kubrick and budding producer James Harris bought the rights to the Lionel White pulp novel The Snatch for $10,000 through their production company Harris-Kubrick Pictures. Early on, the company had a good share of success with the filmThe Killing. However, they found out that they couldn’t use the newly-acquired material as the Motion Picture Producers and Distributors Association (MPPDA) Code would not allow movies to be made about the kidnapping of children. The rights to White’s other novel entitled Clean Break was subsequently swapped to get them out of the complication with The Snatch. At one point, United Artists considered buying Clean Break as a vehicle for Frank Sinatra, but the production didn’t push through.
Later on, as the MPPDA was superseded by the ratings system, The Snatch was finally made into the 1968 film The Night of the Following Day, but with a different director.
Kubrick also spent a year or two developing scripts, which he couldn’t get produced, including one for Kirk Douglas entitled I Stole 16 Million Dollars. The film was about the safecracker Herbert Emmerson Wilson. Another script that wouldn’t make it to production was about the story of the Mosby’s Rangers, a southern guerilla force in the American Civil war.
In 1961, Kubrick worked on a project with Marlon Brando for the film One-Eyed Jacks. However, the negotiations broke down until Brando himself ended up directing the film.
After his disenchantment with Hollywood and a failed marriage, Kubrick moved to England for good. Since then, he would make his subsequent films in his new home in Europe.
His first film in the United Kingdom was the 1962 film Lolita. This was followed by Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb in 1964. Its critical and financial success brought Kubrick in a better position to work with more artistic freedom and bigger budgets for his future film projects. In 1968, he collaborated with science-fiction author Arthur C. Clarke with 2001: A Space Odyssey. Hailed by many as the best film ever made, 2001 became an instant cult favorite, which set the standard and tone for the many sci-fi films after it.
More About Stanley Kubrick Biography:
Stanley Kubrick Biography: His Early Years
Stanley Kubrick Biography: Tapping His Artistic Potentials During His Teenage Years
Stanley Kubrick Biography: From Struggling Through College to Becoming a Young Filmmaker
Stanley Kubrick Biography: Early Documentary Works
Stanley Kubrick Biography: His Professional Works from 1950 to 1960
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