“If you consider film an art form, as some people do, then the Western would be a truly American art form, much as jazz is”
Clinton “Clint” Eastwood Jr. (born May 31, 1930) is an American actor, filmmaker, musician, and political figure.
He had international fame with his role as the “Man with No Name” in Sergio Leone’s Dollars trilogy of spaghetti Westerns during the 1960s, and as antihero cop Harry Callahan in the five “Dirty Harry” films throughout the 1970s and 1980s. These roles, among others, have made Eastwood an enduring cultural icon of masculinity.
For his work in the Western film “Unforgiven” (1992) and the sports drama “Million Dollar Baby” (2004), Eastwood won Academy Awards for Best Director and Best Picture, as well as receiving nominations for Best Actor.
Eastwood’s greatest commercial successes have been the adventure comedy “Every Which Way But Loose” (1978) and its sequel, the action comedy “Any Which Way You Can” (1980). Other popular films include the “Western Hang ‘Em High” (1968), the psychological thriller “Play Misty for Me” (1971), the crime film “Thunderbolt and Lightfoot” (1974), the Western “The Outlaw Josey Wales” (1976), the prison film “Escape from Alcatraz” (1979), the action film “Firefox” (1982), the suspense thriller “Tightrope” (1984), the Western “Pale Rider” (1985), the war films “Where Eagles Dare” (1968), “Heartbreak Ridge” (1986), the action thriller “In the Line of Fire” (1993), the romantic drama “The Bridges of Madison County2 (1995), and the drama “Gran Torino” (2008).
In addition to directing many of his own star vehicles, Eastwood has also directed films in which he did not appear, such as the mystery drama “Mystic River” (2003) and the war film “Letters from Iwo Jima” (2006), for which he received Academy Award nominations, and the drama “Changeling” (2008). The war drama biopic “American Sniper” (2014) set box office records for the largest January release ever and was also the largest opening ever for an Eastwood film.
Eastwood received considerable critical praise in France for several films, including some that were not well received in the United States. Eastwood has been awarded two of France’s highest honors: in 1994 he became a recipient of the Commander of the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres, and in 2007 he was awarded the Legion of Honour medal. In 2000, Eastwood was awarded the Italian Venice Film Festival Golden Lion for lifetime achievement.