American Rebel: The Life of Clint Eastwood

Marc Eliot, Author . Harmony $25.99 (383p) ISBN 978-0-307-33688-0

Eliot, biographer of stars ranging from Walt Disney to Bruce Springsteen, tackles the life, career and artistic challenges of Clint Eastwood. In 1954, at age 24, Eastwood was married and working at an Oakland, Calif., gas station when he was brought to Universal by director Arthur Lubin and signed to a learning contract. After years of uncredited appearances and bit parts in B films, he finally got his break when he was cast as Rowdy Yates on CBS's Rawhide , seen for eight seasons (1959–1965). His role as the poncho-clad Man with No Name in Serge Leone's innovative westerns triggered a solid movie career, followed by the popular Dirty Harry series. In 1971, he made his directorial debut (Play Misty for Me ) and later racked up multiple nominations and awards, including Oscar wins for directing Unforgiven and Million Dollar Baby . Updating previous biographies, Eliot analyzes both box-office bombs and successes while also probing the “never-ending drama” of Eastwood's modus vivendi, his “financial empire” and his personal relationships. Married twice, Eastwood has seven children by five different women. Although Eastwood did not consent to be interviewed and key sources asked not to be named, Eliot documents a wealth of details in this well-researched, comprehensive biography that will not disappoint Eastwood's fans. (Oct.)

Reviewed on: 07/13/2009
Release date: 10/01/2009
Genre: Nonfiction
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