The first trailer for HBO’s documentary Spielberg has been released. Few directors have mastered various genres as successfully as Steven Spielberg has, exploring multiple themes in science fiction, drama, crime, and more. With a nearly 50-year career in filmmaking, Spielberg is one of the founding pioneers of the New Hollywood Era, with three of his films – Jaws, E.T the Extra-Terrestrial, and Jurassic Park – defining the blockbuster term for modern cinema.
The legendary director switched places from behind the camera to in front of it for the HBO documentary Spielberg. Directed and produced by Susan Lacy (American Masters), the documentary will premiere at the New York Film Festival on October 5th before its debut on HBO on October 7, and the first trailer has now been released, featuring Spielberg along with other filmmaking legends and colleagues.
Spielberg examines the director’s career in depth, from his days as a kid making Super 8 films to his association with the “movie brats” like Martin Scorsese and George Lucas, to some of his biggest cinematic hits and the obstacles he encountered with each. Lacy and Spielberg recorded nearly 30 hours of exclusive interviews, also featuring actors, directors, and producers, including Martin Scorsese, Leonardo DiCaprio, J.J Abrams, Francis Ford Coppola, Liam Neeson, Cate Blanchett, Brian de Palma, and many more.
The official synopsis from the New York Film Festival reads as follows:
“Susan Lacy’s Spielberg traces the private, public, and artistic development of one of cinema’s true giants, from his early love of moviemaking as a kid growing up in all-American suburbia, through his sudden rise to superstardom with Jaws, to his establishment of a film-and-TV empire with DreamWorks and beyond. All along the way, Spielberg has approached every new film as if it were his first. Featuring interview with friends and contemporaries in the ‘New Hollywood’ (Francis Coppola, Brian de Palma, George Lucas, Martin Scorsese); key artistic collaborators (including Tom Hanks, John Williams, longtime DP Janusz Kaminski); and, the film’s most touching presences, Spielberg’s beloved sisters and parents, Arnold and Leah”.
Spielberg has not only left his mark in cinema but also in television by executive producing various TV hits from multiple genres, such as Animaniacs, ER, Falling Skies, and most recently Five Came Back. He is also one of the co-founders of DreamWorks Pictures, the studio behind films like Saving Private Ryan and A Beautiful Mind, and animated features such as Shrek and Madagascar.
However, Spielberg is mostly praised for his early science-fiction and adventure films, mainly Jaws, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Raiders of the Lost Ark, and ET, which have served as inspiration for many directors in modern cinema. His approach to humanistic issues in films like The Color Purple and Schindler’s List also marked a turning point not only in his career but in cinema history as well.
A lot has been said and written about Spielberg’s career, but this documentary promises to bring a deeper, more personal look at his craft and creative process from his early days as filmmaker through his biggest hits up to the present day – all with HBO’s seal of quality and a rich list of contributors that will bring multiple perspectives to Spielberg’s career and legacy.