Victor Fleming happens to be one of the very best cinema directors ever. This California native died tragically in 1949 from a heart attack. His legacy lives on in many of the directors in today’s movies. Unfortunately, this great American director never received full credit for the success of Gone with the Wind and The Wizard of Oz. As we come up to the 66th anniversary of his passing, we can take a glance back into the life of Victor Fleming and celebrate the legacy with due respect. The upcoming anniversary marks a timeless milestone in the life of one of the greatest directors of all time; January 6 should be a memorial in honor for both a considerable life and for Hollywood’s achievement in cinema growth.
Early Career of Victor Fleming
Before the classic movies, such as Gone with the Wind and the Wizard of Oz, Victor Fleming served in World War 1 as a chief photographer for President Wilson. He had an amazing mechanical aptitude and worked as a car mechanic, when Allan Dwan and Victor met. Dwan hired him on as a camera assistant. He became a DP or a cinematographer, which means he ran camera and lighting crews on movie sets. He worked with Dwan and D.W. Griffith and directed his first movie in 1919.
Flemings natural love for a robust attitude and outdoors; most of his silent films were action related. He worked with Douglas Fairbanks, Vivien Leigh, Hattie McDaniel and Olivia De Havilland. In 1932, Victor joined the ranks of MGM and filmed some of the studios best performing films. The lineup includes Red Dust, Bombshell, Reckless, Treasure Island and Captains Courageous.
Gone with the Wind Sealed the Deal
Gone with the Wind earned him an Oscar for Best Director in 1939. Victor Fleming filmed this movie in 38-39. One of the major setbacks for the production of the films was that David O. Selznick (producer) wanted Clark Gable for the role of Rhett Butler, and a search for Scarlett led to a massive interview spree of close to 1,400 women for the leading female role. Victor Fleming replaced Cukor, who received the axe shortly after the filming begun. Sam Wood stepped in for Fleming, while he took a sabbatical for exhaustion. It received ten Academy Awards from thirteen nominations, while Victor took home the Best Director award. As we say thanks and good-bye to a wonderful director. It is ok to take a little time to revisit all of his greatest moments in time.