30 Unknown Facts About The Famous Director Woody Allen


Allan Stewart Konigsberg, world renowned by the name Heywood "Woody" Allen, is the recipient of four Academy Awards and nine British Academy Film Awards, with a career spanning more than six decades. Here are some very interesting facts about Woody Allen, the American filmmaker:

  1. Allen the filmmaker started his career as writer and as a comedian before venturing out into the field of acting, directing and music.
  2. He has won four ‘Academy Award’ and nine ‘British Academy Award.’ His 16 nominations for Oscar Best Original Screenplay till 2014 is a record for that category. He also holds the record of 24 nominations in total including acting and directing.
  3. He was born Allen Stewart Konigsberg, on December 01, 1935 in Brooklyn, New York to Nettie, a bookkeeper and Martin Konigsberg, a jewelry engraver and waiter. He has a sister Ellen Letty.
  4. He is a descendant of Russian and Austrian Jewish immigrants. He had troubled childhood with his temperamental and stern mother, who also had a strained relationship with his father.
  5. As a young boy Allen spoke quite a bit of German and was fond of two hobbies even to this day, magic tricks and playing clarinet.
  6. He went to Isaac Asimov School for science and literature and to Midwood High School, apart from learning Hebrew. At school he was inclined towards baseball than studies and engages students with his card talent and magic tricks.
  7. He started writing jokes at 15 for local New Paper through an agent David O.Alber, and received $ 200 a week. His first joke published was ‘Woody Allen says he ate at a restaurant that had OPS price-over people’s salaries.
  8. He legally changed his name to Heywood Allen and later began to call himself Woody Allen in honor of Woody Herman.
  9. He is a successful filmmaker who failed to clear ‘Motion Picture Production’ course at New York University in 1953. His second attempt also failed without clearing the semester at City College of New York in 1954. He had poor grades and erratic attendance
  10. As a ghost writer, he was invited to ‘NBC Writer’s Development Program’ in 1955 and was offered a job with ‘The NBC Comedy Hour’ in Los Angeles.
  11. He started contributing for ‘The Ed Sullivan Show, The Tonight Show,’ Sid Caesar post-Caesar’s Hour and for Candid Camera. He also wrote for Buddy Hackett and for The Pat Boone Chevy Showroom.
  12. He was hailed as a ‘genius’ with his work ethics and for the quality of his work. He put in fifteen hours of work a day writing short stories and cartoon captions for magazines. In 1962 it is estimated that he wrote twenty thousand jokes for various comics.
  13. In 1960s he took up stand-up comedy making his debut at Blue Angel Nightclub, Manhattan in October 1960. He was brutally honest with his biting satirical commentary on the cultural and psychological tenor of the times. His submissive quality was refreshing and Chaplinesque.
  14. He appeared on ‘The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson’ on November 01, 1963 and went on to be associated with it for nine years including as host for seventeen episodes.
  15. He made his debut in Great Britan with his TV special The Woody Allen Show’ in 1965 and in 1969 he hosted his first American special for CBS television. The ‘Tonight Show’ in 1971, in which he hosted Bob Hope & James Coco was the last show he hosted.
  16. His foray into Broadway was as a writer in 1966 with his play ‘Don’t Drink the Water’ and followed it with ‘Play it Again, Sam’ in 1969 in which he also starred.
  17. Allen made his screen play debut in film with ‘What’s New Pussycat?’ in 1965 and as a director in ‘What’s Up, Tiger Lily?’ in 1966. The movie ‘Take the Money and Run’ in 1969 was his first in which he starred, directed and co-wrote.
  18. In April 1977, he wrote, directed and starred along with Diane Keaton in a romantic comedy film ‘Annie Hall,’ which went on to win four Academy Award including best direction and best picture. The film was rated by critic as everyone’s favorite Allen movie and funniest screen play.
  19. In his film we can see the influence of Ingmar Bergman and Federico Fellini. He always portrayed his main protagonist as an upper middle class writer and academician and in 1980s he started to move away from comedy to more philosophical.
  20. The romantic fantasy comedy film ‘The Purple Rose of Cairo,’ which he wrote and directed in 1985, with a message that ‘Life is ultimately disappointing,’ received several screenwriting nominations. Allen has ranked it one among three best films of his.
  21. The 2005 psychological thriller film ‘Match Point,’ written and directed by Allan was a box office success with worldwide earning of $ 85 million and was nomination for Academy Award for Original Screen Play. A favorite film of his own.
  22. His fantasy comedy film ‘Midnight in Paris’ written and directed by Allen, won him his Best Original Screenplay award at Academy Award and Best Screenplay at Golden Globe. This is Allen’s highest grossing film with $ 150 million.
  23. Allen is passionate about jazz which is evident in his background score and he is a modest clarinet player. His New Orleans Jazz band has been playing regularly at Carlyle Hotel, Manhattan for many years. The band has released two CD’s, The Bunk Project and the soundtrack of Wild Man Blues.
  24. From 1976 to 1984, Stuart Hample drew comic strip about Allen, depicting his anxiety, angst, sexual frustration and frequent psychiatric treatments.
  25. Allen just as in his films is romantic. He married Harlene Rosen in 1956 and divorced her in 1959. When he referred Rosen as ‘the Dread Mrs. Allen’ in his stand-up act, he was sued for $ 1 million in defamation case.
  26. In 1966, he married Louise Lasser, which lasted for four years and he did not marry for twenty seven years until 1997. During this intermittent period he was romantically linked with his leading ladies, Diane Keaton, Stacey Nelkin and Mia Farrow.
  27. On December 23, 1997, he married his present wife, Soon-Yi-Previn, an adopted daughter of Mia Farrow, his lady love. The have adopted two children, Bechet and Manzie.
  28. In August 1993, he was accused of sexually abusing Dylan Farrow, his adopter daughter during his relation with Mia Farrow and in October 1993, he was cleared after no clear evidence was found.
  29. He calls himself a ‘militant Freudian atheist’ and spent 37 years undergoing psychoanalysis. According to his biographer, John Baxter, ‘Allen obviously found analysis stimulating, even exciting.’
  30. He was awarded an honorary doctorate degree by Pompeu Fabra University in Barcelona, Spain, in 2007. There is a life-size statue of him in Oviedo.
  31. Woody Allen Net Worth: $80 Million

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