William Goldman Biography (1931-)

Born August 12, 1931, in Chicago (some sources cite Highland Park), IL; son of Maurice Clarence (in business) and Marion (maiden name, Weil) Goldman; brother of James Goldman (a writer); married Ilene Jones, April 15, 1961 (divorced); children: Jenny Rebecca, Susana.

Birth Details
August 12, 1931
Chicago, Illinois, United States

Famous Works

  • Television Appearances
  • Specials
  • Word into Image: Writers on Writing, PBS, 1994
  • Film Appearances
  • Himself, The Making of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (documentary), 1970
  • Himself, Clint Eastwood: Out of the Shadows, Warner Bros. Home Video, 2000
  • Film Work
  • Creator of characters, Butch and Sundance: The Early Days, Twentieth Century-Fox, 1979
  • Also worked as a consultant on other films.
  • Plays
  • (With James Goldman) Blood, Sweat, and Stanley Poole, produced atMorosco Theatre, New York City, 1961 published by Dramatists Play Service (New York City), 1962
  • (With James Goldman and John Kander; and lyricist) A Family Affair(musical), produced at Billy Rose Theatre, New York City, 1962
  • Screenplays
  • (With Michael Relph) Masquerade (also known as Operation Masquerade and A Shabby Tiger), United Artists, 1965
  • Harper (also known as The Moving Target; based on a Ross MacDonald novel), Warner Bros., 1966
  • Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, Twentieth Century-Fox, 1969 published by Corgi, 1969 published by Bantam (New York City), 1971
  • The Hot Rock (also known as How to Steal a Diamond in Four Uneasy Lessons), Twentieth Century-Fox, 1972
  • (Lyricist) When the Legends Die (based on the novel by Hal Borland), Twentieth Century-Fox, 1972
  • (With Bryan Forbes) The Stepford Wives (based on the novella by Ira Levin), Columbia, 1974
  • The Great Waldo Pepper, Universal, 1975 published by Dell (New York City), 1975
  • All the President's Men (based on the book by Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein), Warner Bros., 1976
  • Marathon Man (based on Goldman's novel), Paramount, 1976
  • A Bridge Too Far (based on the novel by Cornelius Ryan), United Artists, 1977
  • Magic (based on his novel), Twentieth Century-Fox, 1978
  • Heat (based on his novel), New Century-Vista, 1987
  • The Princess Bride (based on his The Princess Bride: S. Morgenstern's Classic Tale of True Love and High Adventure, the "Good Parts" Version, Abridged by William Goldman), Twentieth Century-Fox, 1987
  • Misery (based on the novel by Stephen King), Columbia, 1990
  • (With Bryan Forbes and William Boyd) Chaplin (also known as Charlon), TriStar, 1992
  • (With Robert Collector and Dana Olson) Memoirs of an Invisible Man(also known as Les aventures d'un homme invisible; based on the novelby H. F. Saint), Warner Bros., 1992
  • Year of the Comet, Columbia, 1992
  • Maverick (based on the television series created by Roy Huggins),Warner Bros., 1994 published by New American Library (New York City), 1994
  • The Chamber (based on the novel by John Grisham), Universal, 1996
  • The Ghost and the Darkness, Paramount, 1996 published as The Ghost and the Darkness: The Book of the Film, Applause Books, 1996
  • Absolute Power (based on the novel by David Baldacci), Columbia, 1997 published as Absolute Power: The Screenplay, Applause Books, 1997
  • (With others) The General's Daughter (also known as Wehrlos--Die Tochter des Generals; based on the novel by Nelson DeMille), Paramount,1999
  • Hearts in Atlantis (based on the novel by Stephen King), Warner Bros., 2001
  • Also wrote a script based on In the Spring the War Ended, a novelby Stephen Linakis.
  • Collected Screenplays
  • William Goldman: Four Screenplays with Essays (contains Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, Marathon Man, Misery, and The Princess Bride), Applause Books, 1995
  • William Goldman: Five Screenplays (contains All the President'sMen, The Great Waldo Pepper, Harper, Magic, and Maverick), Applause Books, 1996
  • Teleplays
  • Movies
  • Mr. Horn, CBS, 1979
  • Novels
  • The Temple of Gold, Knopf (New York City), 1957
  • Your Turn to Curtsy, My Turn to Bow, Doubleday (New York City), 1958
  • Soldier in the Rain, Atheneum (New York City), 1960
  • Boys and Girls Together, Atheneum, 1964
  • The Thing of It Is ..., Harcourt (New York City), 1964
  • (As Harry Longbaugh) No Way to Treat a Lady, Gold Medal (New YorkCity), 1964 then (as William Goldman) Harcourt, 1967
  • Father's Day, Harcourt, 1970
  • (As S. Morgenstern) The Princess Bride: S. Morgenstern's Classic Taleof True Love and High Adventure, the "Good Parts" Version, Abridged by William Goldman, Harcourt, 1973
  • Marathon Man, Delacorte (New York City), 1974
  • Wigger (juvenile), Harcourt, 1974
  • Magic, Delacorte, 1976
  • Tinsel, Delacorte, 1979
  • Control, Delacorte, 1982
  • (As S. Morgenstern) The Silent Gondoliers, Del Ray (New York City), 1983
  • The Color of Light, Warner Books (New York City), 1984
  • Heat, Warner Books, 1985
  • Brothers, Warner Books, 1987
  • Work represented in anthologies, including New World Writing 17, Lippincott (Philadelphia, PA), 1960; and Stories from the Transatlantic Review, edited by Joseph F. McCrindle, Holt (New York City), 1970. Contributor of short stories to periodicals, including Esquire, New York, Rogue, and the Transatlantic Review.
  • Nonfiction
  • The Season: A Candid Look at Broadway, Harcourt, 1969 revised edition, Limelight Editions, 1984
  • William Goldman's Story of A Bridge Too Far, Dell, 1977
  • Adventures in the Screen Trade: A Personal View of Hollywood and Screenwriting, Warner Books, 1983
  • (With Mike Lupica) Wait Till Next Year: The Story of a Season When What Should've Happened Didn't and What Could've Gone Wrong Did!, Bantam, 1988
  • Hype and Glory, Villard Books (New York City), 1990
  • The Big Picture: Who Killed Hollywood? and Other Essays, ApplauseBooks, 2000
  • Which Lie Did I Tell? More Adventures in the Screen Trade, Pantheon, 2000
  • Contributor to books, including The Movie Business Book, edited byJason E. Squire, Simon & Schuster (New York City), 1992; and Rainbow:A Star-Studded Tribute to Judy Garland, edited by Ethlie Ann Vare, Boulevard Books (New York City), 1998. Author of the foreword for the book TheFirst Time I Got Paid for It--Writers' Tales from the Hollyood Trenches,edited by Peter Lefcourt and Laura Shapiro, PublicAffairs (New York City), 2000. Also a contributor of articles to numerous periodicals.

Further Reference


  • Soldier in the Rain, released by Allied Artists in 1963, is basedon Goldman's novel of the same name. Another of Goldman's novels, No Way to Treat a Lady, was adapted as a film and released by Paramount in 1968.Douglas J. Cohen wrote the book, music, and lyrics for a musical version of No Way to Treat a Lady produced in 1987 at the Hudson Guild Theatre inNew York City. Several of Goldman's works have also been recorded as audio books.
    • Andersen, Richard, William Goldman, Twayne (Boston, MA), 1979
    • Empire, June, 2000, pp. 110-112, 114
    • Entertainment Weekly, February 14, 1997, p. 39
    • Maclean's, February 17, 1997, p. 72
    • Nation, March 17, 1997, p. 43
    • New Republic, March 17, 1997, p. 28
    • Newsweek, February 17, 1997, p. 67
    • People Weekly, February 17, 1997, p. 19
    • Premiere, November, 1999, pp. 59-60, 66-67
    • Time, February 24, 1997, p. 67

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