From: The LA Times
By: SUSAN KING, Times Staff Writer
Date: 18 May 1999
Title: Colleagues Salute Kubrick's 'Absolute Mastery'
With recollections both poignant and amusing, friends and colleagues reminisced warmly about the late director Stanley Kubrick at Sunday's Directors Guild of America's tribute. "He was one of the greatest film directors of all time," said DGA President Jack Shea to the near-capacity crowd gathered for the memorial at the DGA Theatre in West Hollywood. "He was truly worthy of the word 'genius.' He had absolute mastery of the art of filmmaking." Kubrick died March 8 in his sleep at the age of 70, having just completed his final film, "Eyes Wide Shut," starring Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman, which is set to open in July.
Chuck Workman edited a marvelous montage of clips that opened the ceremony, featuring footage from all of Kubrick's films: "The Killing," "Paths of Glory," "Spartacus," "Lolita," "Dr. Strangelove," "2001: A Space Odyssey," "A Clockwork Orange," "Barry Lyndon," "The Shining," "Full Metal Jacket" and "Eyes Wide Shut." Besides discussing his control and expertise in every aspect of filmmaking--"Stanley was all of the guilds rolled into one," said Warner Bros. Chairman Terry Semel--speakers offered insight into the filmmaker, who also was a great chess hustler, a fanatic for gadgets and a warm family man.
"We all know that he never slept," said Semel, who had worked with Kubrick since 1975. "He was the most fiercely independent director this industry has ever known. We were all proud to call him a friend." Being his friend meant receiving hundreds of phone calls and faxes from Kubrick. "He was unrelenting," Semel said. "He was always pushing for more than excellence. He made each of us continue to stretch." Kubrick talked several times over the phone with Semel about "Eyes Wide Shut" the day before he died. Semel recalled the director was excited about the project. "He went to sleep with a big smile on his face. He had finished everything. Stanley was probably the smartest human being we've ever met."
Keir Dullea, who played Dave the astronaut in "2001," recalled that the director was a "very quiet, very gentle" man who "always knew what he wanted. He had the cutest humor. He was truly a renaissance man." Vincent D'Onofrio credits Kubrick with giving him a movie career when the director cast him as the heavy, psychologically scarred recruit Leonard in "Full Metal Jacket."
"He hired me over the telephone," said D'Onofrio, who previously had worked in the theater. He described shooting the movie as "going to film school for 13 months."
Steven Spielberg described himself as a "long-distance" friend. Although they had known each other for 19 years, Spielberg said he had seen the reclusive Kubrick only a couple of dozen times. Spielberg revealed that before Kubrick's death, the two had discussed doing a film project together.
"He was very kind to me," recalled Spielberg, who added that he would often receive faxes in the middle of the night from Kubrick about some new lens or gadget he had discovered. "He was not stingy in his compliments."
From: Reuters News
Title: Stars honor Stanley Kubrick by Nick Madigan
HOLLYWOOD, MAY 16 - Stanley Kubrick called himself a ``demented perfectionist,'' and there were few who disagreed Sunday during a tribute to the late director of gems like ``2001: A Space Odyssey'' and ``A Clockwork Orange.''
Reuters news Stars honor Stanley Kubrick HOLLYWOOD, MAY 16 - Stanley Kubrick called himself a ``demented perfectionist,'' and there were few who disagreed Sunday during a tribute to the late director of gems like ``2001: A Space Odyssey'' and ``A Clockwork Orange.'' ``His eccentricities were the ones of an artist protecting his vision,'' said movie critic Richard Schickel. ``Other men broke under the strain of Stanley's heedless pursuit of perfection. I suppose that, in the end, he did, too.''
Sitting among the audience at the Directors Guild of America were actors who worked for Kubrick, including Jack Nicholson (``The Shining'') and Keir Dullea (``2001''); and admirers like Steven Spielberg, Warren Beatty and Curtis Hanson.
Warner Bros. co-chairman Terry Semel recalled the ``hundreds and hundreds of phone calls and thousands of faxes'' he received from Kubrick during their 30-year collaboration. ``I guess you could say he was unrelenting,'' Semel said, and the crowd laughed knowingly.
Semel said he spoke with Kubrick by phone early on the day Kubrick died in his sleep -- March 7, in Harpenden, England -- and that the director had been jubilant about his latest film, ``Eyes Wide Shut.''
``He clearly went to bed with a smile on his face,'' Semel surmised.
Vincent D'Onofrio, whose first film was ``Full Metal Jacket,'' remembered asking one day on the set why there was a van full of people nearby.
``'Those are the London film execs,''' Kubrick replied. ``'They're not allowed to get out.'''
During the making of ``Dr. Strangelove,'' production designer Ken Adam said he drove Kubrick to the set every day in his Jaguar E-type, ``but Stanley insisted I not drive above 30 miles an hour.''
Adam described the Bronx-born director as ``a kind patriarch,'' revealing that Kubrick had once spent hours helping him set up the lights for a scene in ``The Spy Who Loved Me.''
Spielberg met Kubrick -- ``a schlumpy-looking man in ill-fitting clothes'' -- on the London set of ``The Shining'' in 1980. ``'Saw your last movie, '1941,''' Kubrick said to him. ``'It was great, but it wasn't funny. You should have sold it as a drama.' ``
More recently, Spielberg said, ``We were actually going to do a picture together that he was going to produce and that I was going to direct; I have 900 pieces of fax paper on that project.''
During a reception following the tribute, Spielberg said he often sent Kubrick the first cuts of his movies, even before the studios had seen them, but that Kubrick did not reciprocate. ``How come?'' Spielberg asked him around the time of ``Full Metal Jacket.''
``'Because that's who I am, and that's who you are,''' Kubrick replied.
Beatty said Kubrick ``navigated the currents of idealism and the vulgarities of the marketplace better than anyone else.''
``Most of us were so shocked by his death because we figured if anyone had it wired to live to 110 or 125, it was Stanley,'' Beatty said.