Allen, Woody (1935- ) was born as Allen Stewart Konigsberg in Brooklyn in New York. At the age of 15 he started to use the name Woody Allen. Allen failed a film course at NYU during his first semester. Dropping out of college, he joined the NBC Writer's Program. Allen also started a lucrative secondary career as a gag writer for such comics and nightclub performers. By 1960, he had begun his own successful career as a stand-up comedian in nightclubs. Allen created humour that was based in the urban Jewish mentality. In his halting stammer, he would deliver monologues that would start fun at everything from sex and marriage to religion and politics. There he fascinated a film producer and was hired to write and act in the picture What’s New, Pussycat? This film introduced return themes found in his work: romantic complications and the belief on psychotherapy. It started his next career and he became one of American filmmakers who can rightly be labelled as an auteur. His films, dramas are rich in detail or comedies, are personal, generally light-hearted and full of Allen's interest of art, religion and love. Shortly thereafter, he debuted as a filmmaker with "What's Up Tiger Lily?" that is a retelling of minor Japanese spy thriller where he used his own storyline. For a period in the mid- to late-1960s, Allen concentrated on the Broadway stage. "Don't Drink the Water" was a movie about a family from New Jersey, which was caught up in spying in an unnamed Iron Curtain country. "Play It Again, Sam" was more successful. The central character, a film critic invokes the spirit of Humphrey Bogart as his guide through life and love. In 1969, Allen created two short films for a television special, "Cupid's Shaft" that is an honour of Charlie Chaplin's classic "City Lights" and a free adaptation of "Pygmalion" in which Allen played as a false rabbi who was hired to teach a beautiful, but stupid woman. In the same year, he wrote, directed and starred in the movie "Take the Money and Run" which parodied gangster films and cinema documentaries. "Bananas" "Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex* (*but were afraid to ask)" were satires that criticised politics and mass media
"Sleeper" from 1973 was about a man who is frozen and thawed out after two hundred years. The next movie "Love and Death" set during the Napoleonic wars.
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Woody Allen biography
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