September 7, 2010


Producer rolls credits on Hollywood career

“He must be an idealist, a pragmatist, a diplomat and a disciplinarian. He must be ready to step in when temperaments clash to soothe ruffled spirits and injured egos. He must be both artist and businessman.” That’s how legendary Hollywood producer Walter Mirisch described the job of a movie producer when he came to Emory on Aug. 31 to discuss his book “I Thought We Were Making Movies, Not History.”  

In the post-lecture Q&A led by Department of Film Studies chair Matthew Bernstein, Mirisch recollected fond memories of rubbing shoulders with some of Hollywood’s most famous actors and actresses and serving as president of the Producers Guild of America. 

He also gave insight into some of the hard decisions he’s had to make during his career such as firing director Jerome Robbins from the 1961 movie production of  “West Side Story.”

Mirisch concluded, “Success is made up of little feats. Where it ends up is up to change.”

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