Sergio Leone was virtually born into the cinema – he was the son of Roberto Roberti (aka Vincenzo Leone), one of Italy’s cinema pioneers, and actress Bice Valerian. Leone entered films in his late teens, working as an assistant director to both Italian directors and American directors working in Italy (usually making Biblical and Roman epics, much in vogue at the time). Towards the end of the 1950s he started writing screenplays, and began directing after taking over Gli ultimi giorni di Pompei (1959) in mid-shoot after its original director fell ill. His first solo feature, Il colosso di Rodi (1961), was a routine Roman epic, but his second feature, A Fistful of Dollars (1964), a remake of Akira Kurosawa’s Yojimbo (1961), caused a revolution. Although it wasn’t the first spaghetti Western, it was far and away the most successful, and shot former TV cowboy Clint Eastwood to stardom (Leone wanted Henry Fonda or Charles Bronson but couldn’t afford them). The… read more
From his Bio, "He died in 1989 after preparing an even more expensive Soviet co-production on the World War II siege of Leningrad." Just imagine the brilliance that could have come from this film!
I consider him the finest director (as well as Scorsese), he made my favourite film 'Once Upon a Time in America', but one thing bother me about him, why so much rape? I wish he made more
The man was a genius. After seeing Once Upon a Time In America for the first time tonight, I can now clearly see that his immense talent went far beyond the western genre (although my favorite film by him is still The Good, the Bad and the Ugly). Wish he made more movies....