Born in Antwerp, Belgium, Grosbard and his family fled to Havana in 1942. After six years there, the family emigrated to the United States, where Grosbard earned a BA from the University of Chicago in one year and then a Master's degree. He attended Yale Drama School for one year before serving in the Army.
Grosbard found his way into the world of theater when he came to New York in the 1960s. He first gained acclaim for his direction of The Days and Nights of Beebee Fenstermaker off-Broadway. That production paved the way to his first foray onto Broadway, the Pulitzer Prize-winning play The Subject Was Roses, for which he received a Tony nomination. Over the next three decades, he would become one of the stage's most acclaimed directors, with credits including Arthur Miller's A View From The Bridge, for which he won an Obie, David Mamet's An American Buffalo, which earned him another Tony nomination, and Woody Allen's The Floating Lightbulb.
Grosbard's film career began when he apprenticed with Elia Kazan and Arthur Penn. After directing the screen version of The Subject Was Roses, which earned Patricia Neal an Oscar nomination and Jack Albertson the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor in 1968, Grosbard went on to helm 1978's Straight Time with Dustin Hoffman and True Confessions, starring Robert DeNiro and Robert Duvall, in 1981.
Most recently, Grosbard directed the 1995 drama Georgia, starring Jennifer Jason Leigh and Mare Winningham. The film earned several Independent Spirit Award nominations, including one for Grosbard, and earned Winningham a 1996 Oscar® nomination for Best Supporting Actress.
Additional credits for the screen include Who is Harry Kellerman and Why is He Saying Those Terrible Things About Me? and Falling in Love.
Ulu Grosbard Facts
|January 9, 1929 (95)