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filmstrip of photos of Peter

Explore the timeline of Peter Bogdanovich’s career from his early days in New York City to his life in Hollywood.


Peter Bogdanovich is born in New York City. He was raised on silent movies, which his father brought him to see at the Museum of Modern Art.


16 year-old Peter lies about his age to get into acting classes taught by Stella Adler.


Peter directs his first play, Clifford Odet’s The Big Knife.


Peter writes his first monograph for MoMA, about Orson Welles. Monographs on Howards Hawks and Alfred Hitchcock followed in 1962 and 1963, respectively.


Peter marries Polly Platt, who he met the year before when he was Artistic Director for the summer season of the Phoenicia Playhouse in upstate New York.


Encouraged by filmmaker Frank Tashlin, Peter and Polly drive cross-country to Los Angeles to find careers in Hollywood.


Peter is hired by B-movie king Roger Corman as an assistant.


Peter directs second-unit on the Corman picture Wild Angels. He also appears on camera as a townsperson and gets beaten up by some Hells Angels who didn’t appreciate his direction.


Peter meets a young Frank Marshall at a party at John Ford’s house.


Peter writes and directs Targets for Roger Corman. It’s released the following year.


Peter meets Orson Welles for the first time, at Polo Lounge of the Beverly Hills Hotel. Peter agrees to write a book about him.


Peter directs The Last Picture Show, correctly predicting that both Ben Johnson and Cloris Leachman would win Oscars for their performances.


Peter begins shooting What’s Up, Doc? for Warner Bros., and finishes the documentary Directed by John Ford.


Joining with Francis Ford Coppola and William Friedkin, Peter forms The Directors Company at Paramount.


Paper Moon is released and becomes Peter’s third consecutive hit. But it’s his last collaboration with Polly Platt – they divorce later in the year.


Daisy Miller, directed by Peter and starring Cybill Shepherd, opens to lousy reviews and tepid box office.


Peter and Cybill’s next movie, At Long Last Love, flops at the box-office and is pilloried by critics.


Peter directs Nickelodeon, considered his third flop in a row.


After resolving a lawsuit with Playboy, Peter secures the rights to the novel Saint Jack for Orson Welles – but he eventually replaces Orson as the director.


Peter shoots Saint Jack in Singapore, which brings his relationship with Cybill Shepherd to an end.


Peter directs They All Laughed in New York City, starring Dorothy Stratten. Dorothy is murdered just a few months after the production wraps.


Peter self-distributes They All Laughed, a disastrous financial decision which leads to the loss of his Bel Air home.


After declaring bankruptcy, Peter returns to directing with Mask. He sues Universal Studios for violating his final cut, though the movie still receives positive reviews and is a success at the box office.


After many delays, Peter’s next movie, Illegally Yours, finally opens. It flops with both critics and audiences.


Peter directs Texasville, a sequel to The Last Picture Show featuring many of the original cast.


Peter brings the farcical play Noises Off to the big screen, produced by Frank Marshall. It flops initially but develops a cult following in later years.


Peter directs TheThing Called Love, the last movie River Phoenix completed before his death.


After his second round of bankruptcy, Peter guest stars in a recurring role on the hit HBO show The Sopranos. He would direct an episode in 2004.


Peter directs The Cat’s Meow, a historical Hollywood drama based on a story he originally heard from Orson Welles.


Peter returns to documentaries to direct Runnin’ Down a Dream, a four-hour documentary about Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers.


Peter directs the long-gestating project She’s Funny That Way, which he wrote with Dorothy’s sister Louise Stratten.


Peter releases The Great Buster, a documentary about silent film giant Buster Keaton, and oversees the completion of The Other Side of the Wind, Orson Welles’ unfinished film.