Winter 2006

Ida Lupino

Member, 1950-1995

"If Hollywood is to remain on the top of the film world, I know one thing for sure — there must be more experimentation with out-of-the-way film subjects,” declared Ida Lupino, the DGA’s second female director member and one of its most prolific. In her day, she “tackled subjects that were pretty daring at the time - unwed mothers, under the table payoffs in amateur tennis, a hitchhiker’s cross-country crime spree, bigamy and polio.” In the early 1950s, this was no small feat, especially under the constant scrutiny of the Production Code Administration. A pioneer of independent, low-budget films, she later made the transition to television, directing episodes for 56 different series. On the set, she preferred being called “mother” and avoided ordering her crew around. “I’d say, ‘Darlings, mother has a problem. I’d love to do this. Can you do it? It sounds kooky, but I want to do it. Now can you do it for me?’ And they do it - they just do it.” Her director’s chair read: “Mother of all of us.”


The Legends column began as part of the celebration of the 70th Anniversary of the DGA in 2006 to profile Guild members who have made outstanding contributions to their Guild in service and leadership.

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