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Daniel Mannix Petrie (November 26, 1920 – August 22, 2004) was a Canadian film, television, and stage director who worked in Canada, Hollywood, and the United Kingdom; known for directing grounded human dramas often dealing with taboo subject matter. He was one of several Canadian-born expatriate filmmakers, including Norman Jewison and Sidney J. Furie, to find critical and commercial success overseas in the 1960s due to the limited opportunities in the Canadian film industry at the time. He was the patriarch of the Petrie filmmaking family, with four of his children all working in the film industry.
Daniel Mannix Petrie
November 26, 1920
|Died||August 22, 2004 (aged 83)|
|Education||St. Francis Xavier University|
|Occupation||Director, educator, writer|
Dorothea Grundy Petrie
|Children||Daniel, Donald, June, Mary|
Beginning his career in television, he made his critical and popular breakthrough directing the 1961 film version of the Lorraine Hansberry play A Raisin in the Sun, which won the Gary Cooper Award at the Cannes Film Festival. He directed over 90 films and television programs until his retirement in 2001, winning several accolades (including three Primetime Emmy Awards) in the process. His semi-autobiographical 1984 film The Bay Boy won the Genie Award for Best Motion Picture.
Throughout his life, Petrie maintained strong ties to the academic world, serving as the deputy chairman of the American Film Institute from 1986 to 1987.
Early life and educationEdit
Petrie was born in Glace Bay, Nova Scotia, Canada, the son of Mary Anne (née Campbell) and William Mark Petrie, a soft-drink manufacturer. He achieved a Bachelor of Arts in Communications at St. Francis Xavier University before completing a Masters in adult education at Columbia University.
He moved to the United States in 1945, and began his career teaching at Northwestern University and Creighton University, where he was head of the theatre department until 1950. Although Petrie stopped teaching, he maintained a strong relationship with the academic world throughout his career, holding a faculty position at the American Film Institute, where he also acted as deputy chairman from 1986 to 1987.
Petrie started working as a television director in 1950. His signature film A Raisin in the Sun (1961) was assigned to him after it was refused to its original director on Broadway, future National Medal of Arts honoree Lloyd Richards, because Richards was black. The movie maintained the award-winning cast and performances it had had on Broadway during its two-year successful run under Richards' direction, and the film version was nominated for the Palme d'Or award at the Cannes Film Festival. Petrie went on to have a fulfilling movie directing career because of the success of this movie; Richards did not get an opportunity to direct a movie again until 1995.
Petrie also directed television movies, such as Sybil, Eleanor and Franklin, Eleanor and Franklin: The White House Years, The Dollmaker, My Name Is Bill W., Mark Twain and Me, Kissinger and Nixon, Inherit the Wind, and Wild Iris.
Petrie's theatrical films were rarely box-office successes, but they often featured large, well-known casts, such as The Betsy (1978), starring Laurence Olivier, Tommy Lee Jones and Robert Duvall. His films feature the earliest starring screen appearances by such stars as Winona Ryder (Square Dance - she first appeared in a supporting role in Lucas) and Kiefer Sutherland (The Bay Boy). As a television director he won multiple Emmy and Directors Guild of America Awards.
|1960||The Bramble Bush||Feature directorial debut|
|1961||A Raisin in the Sun|
|1962||The Main Attraction|
|1966||The Spy with a Cold Nose|
|1973||The Neptune Factor||First Canadian film|
|1974||Buster and Billie|
|1981||Fort Apache the Bronx|
|1984||The Bay Boy|
|1988||Cocoon: The Return|
|1950||Studs' Place||3 episodes|
|1950–51||The Billy Rose Show||9 episodes|
|1952||Short Short Dramas||Episode: “Success Story”|
|1952–53||Treasury Men in Action||2 episodes|
|1953||The Revlon Mirror Theater||2 episodes|
|1954||The Motorola Television Hour||Episode: “Nightmare in Algeirs”|
|1954–55||Armstrong Circle Theatre||3 episodes|
|1954–55||The Elgin Hour||8 episodes|
|1955||Studio One||Episode: “Julius Caesar”|
|1955–56||Joe and Mabel||6 episodes|
|1955–56||Goodyear Playhouse||2 episodes|
|1955–59||The United States Steel Hour||6 episodes|
|1956||Air Power||Episode: “The Early Days”|
|1956||The Alcoa Hour||Episode: “The Stingiest Man in Town”|
|1957–61||DuPont Show of the Month||6 episodes|
|1958||Shirley Temple's Storybook||Episode: “Rumpelstilskin”|
|1958||Playhouse 90||Episode: “Turn Left at Mount Everest”|
|1958||Kraft Television Theatre||Episode: “The Last of the Belles”|
|1958||Pursuit||Episode: “Epitaph for a Golden Girl”|
|1959||The Play of the Week||Episode: “The Cherry Orchard”|
|1960||The Art Carney Special||Episode: “Victory”|
|1960||The David Susskind Show||Episode: “6 December 1960”|
|1961||'Way Out||Episode: “I Heard You Calling Me”|
|1961||Great Ghost Tales||Episode: “William Wilson”|
|1962–65||The Defenders||5 episodes|
|1963||Bob Hope Presents the Chrysler Theatre||Episode: “One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich”|
|1963–64||East Side/West Side||3 episodes|
|1965||Profiles in Courage||Episode: “John Peter Altgeld”|
|1965||For the People||Episode: “Guilt Shall Not Escape Nor Innocence Suffer”|
|1965||The Doctors and The Nurses||2 episodes|
|1969||Insight||Episode: “A Thousand Red Flowers”|
|1969||The Bold Ones: The New Doctors||Episode: “The Rebellion of the Body”|
|1969||Strange Report||2 episodes|
|1969–71||Marcus Welby, M.D.||6 episodes|
|1969–71||Medical Center||7 episodes|
|1970||The Interns||Episode: “An Afternoon in the Fall”|
|1970||San Francisco International Airport||Episode: “The High Cost of Nightmares”|
|1971||The Bold Ones: The Lawyers||Episode: “The Hyland Confession”|
|1971||The Man and the City||Episode: “Hands of Love”|
|1971||The Name of the Game||Episode: “The Showdown”|
|1971–73||McMillan & Wife||2 episodes|
|1972||Hec Ramsey||Episode: “The Century Turns”|
Telefilms and limited seriesEdit
|1969||Silent Night, Lonely Night|
|1971||Big Fish, Little Fish|
|1971||A Howling in the Woods|
|1971||Young Marrieds at Play|
|1972||Moon of the Wolf|
|1973||Trouble Comes to Town|
|1974||The Gun and the Pulpit|
|1976||Eleanor and Franklin|
|1976||Harry S. Truman: Plain Speaking|
|1977||Eleanor and Franklin: The White House Years|
|1985||The Execution of Raymond Graham|
|1986||Half a Lifetime|
|1989||My Name Is Bill W.|
|1991||Mark Twain and Me|
|1992||A Town Torn Apart|
|1995||Kissinger and Nixon|
|1996||Calm at Sunset|
|1998||Monday After the Miracle|
|1999||Inherit the Wind|
|1999||Seasons of Love|
|2001||Walter and Henry|
Awards and nominationsEdit
|1962||Directors Guild of America Award||Outstanding Directing – Feature Film||A Raisin in the Sun||Nominated|
|1963||Directors Guild of America Award||Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Television||The Defenders (Episode: “The Benefactor”)||Nominated|
|1970||Directors Guild of America Award||Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Television||Silent Night, Lonely Night||Nominated|
|1972||Primetime Emmy Awards||Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series||The Man and the City (Episode: “Hands of Love”)||Nominated|
|1972||Directors Guild of America Award||Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Dramatic Series - Night||The Man and the City (Episode: “Hands of Love”)||Won|
|1977||Primetime Emmy Awards||Outstanding Directing for a Limited Series, Movie, or Dramatic Special||Eleanor and Franklin||Won|
|1978||Primetime Emmy Awards||Outstanding Directing for a Limited Series, Movie, or Dramatic Special||Eleanor and Franklin: The White House Years||Won|
|1985||Genie Awards||Best Screenplay||The Bay Boy||Won|
|1986||Primetime Emmy Awards||Outstanding Directing for a Limited Series, Movie, or Dramatic Special||The Execution of Raymond Graham||Nominated|
|1989||Primetime Emmy Awards||Outstanding Directing for a Limited Series, Movie, or Dramatic Special||My Name Is Bill W.||Nominated|
|1989||Primetime Emmy Awards||Outstanding Television Movie||My Name Is Bill W.||Nominated|
|1992||Primetime Emmy Awards||Outstanding Directing for a Limited Series, Movie, or Dramatic Special||Mark Twain and Me||Nominated|
|1992||Primetime Emmy Awards||Outstanding Children's Program||Mark Twain and Me||Won|
|1993||Primetime Emmy Awards||Outstanding Directing for a Limited Series, Movie, or Dramatic Special||A Town Torn Apart||Nominated|
|2005||Directors Guild of Canada||Lifetime Achievement Award||N/A||Won|
|1961||Cannes Film Festival||Gary Cooper Award||A Raisin in the Sun||Won|
|1961||Cannes Film Festival||Palme d’Or||A Raisin in the Sun||Nominated|
|1981||Avoriaz Fantastic Film Festival||Special Jury Award||Resurrection||Won|
|1997||Verona Love Screens Film Festival||Best Film||The Assistant||Nominated|
The Petrie familyEdit
Petrie was married for 57 years to Dorothea Grundy Petrie, an Emmy-winning film and television producer. Their sons were Daniel and Donald, both successful directors and screenwriters. Their twin daughters were former MGM executive June and actor/writer Mary. In 2002, the family as a whole was awarded the American Film Institute's Platinum Circle Award to recognise their collective creative contributions.
- "Daniel Petrie Biography (1920-)". Filmreference.com. Retrieved 2017-02-06.
- "Lloyd Richards, A Remembrance". Movie City News. July 7, 2006. Archived from the original on May 8, 2016. Retrieved October 10, 2020.
- Oliver, Myrna (2004-08-24). "Daniel Petrie Sr., 83; Award-Winning Director". LA Times. Retrieved 2016-11-26.
- "AFI ASSOCIATES TO HONOR HOLLYWOOD'S PETRIE FAMILY WITH FOURTH ANNUAL 'PLATINUM CIRCLE AWARD'" (PDF) (Press release). American Film Institute. 2002-08-26. Retrieved 2016-11-26.
- Adams, James (2004-08-25). "Petrie put mark on Hollywood". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved 2016-11-26.
- Caulfield, Deborah (1985-08-12). "The Petrie Family: A Life In Show Business". LA Times. Retrieved 2016-11-26.