Lewis Milestone

Lewis Milestone

Former assistant to cinematographer Lucien Andriot (with the US Army Signal Corps) who moved to Hollywood in 1919 and began working as an assistant cutter the following year. Milestone began directing in 1925 and assured himself a place in cinema history with "All Quiet on the Western Front" (1930), a landmark anti-war work, and "The Front Page" (1931), still considered a yardstick of films about journalism. Milestone was one of Hollywood's most technically accomplished early directors and had a reputation for meticulous pre-production planning and preparation; he continued directing until the 1960s (mostly, by then, in TV), though he too frequently squandered his talents on inferior vehicles. Later works of note include: "The General Died at Dawn" (1936), a flawed but complex and visually compelling tale of spy intrigue; "Of Mice and Men" (1939), notable for a rare "straight" performance by Lon Chaney Jr; "Our Russian Front" (1941), a documentary co-directed with Joris Ivens; and "A Walk in the Sun" (1945), another poignant study of war. Married to actress Kendall Lee Glaezner from 1935 until her death in 1978.