In Memoriam: Arthur Hiller 1923-2016

DGA Quarterly Summer 2007

August 17, 2016

Los Angeles – Directors Guild of America President Paris Barclay and National Executive Director Jay D. Roth made the following statements upon learning of the passing of former DGA President Arthur Hiller:

“We are deeply saddened to learn of Arthur’s passing. As a tireless crusader in the fight for creative rights and a passionate film preservation advocate, Arthur Hiller’s impact on the fabric of our industry will be felt for generations to come,” said Barclay.  “As Guild president, Arthur was a warm and nurturing father figure who was deeply concerned with the personal and professional well-being of every one of our members. Whether lobbying on Capitol Hill for the artistic integrity of filmmakers worldwide, negotiating with the studios to secure health and pension provisions for our families, or establishing the first committee to advance opportunities for women and minorities, Arthur's passion was exemplary and inspiring. Our Guild is stronger because of him, and our hearts go out to his family at this difficult time.”

“Arthur’s presidency was marked by a singular passion for and deep moral obligation to the protection of our members’ creative and economic freedoms,” said Roth.  “His spirited leadership as founding chairman of the Artists Rights Foundation in the early 1990s was instrumental in safeguarding against the physical alteration of our members’ creative work, both in film and television. As Arthur once said with his famously matter-of-fact panache, ‘Just because you bought the Mona Lisa, doesn’t mean you have the right to paint a mustache on her.’ Our thoughts are with his family, his friends and the many people who loved him.”

DGA Service and Awards

Arthur Hiller was a Guild member for six decades, originally joining both the Radio and Television Directors Guild and the Screen Directors Guild, which merged in 1960 to form the modern Directors Guild of America. He served on the DGA National Board in various capacities beginning in 1971 and was the Guild's Fifth Vice President from 1985-1987, Third Vice President from 1987-1989 and DGA President for two terms from 1989-1993. Hiller served on the Western Directors Council for over 35 years, on the Creative Rights Committee for 20 years and was a member of several Negotiating Committees. He also served as a member of the National Film Preservation Board of the Library of Congress from 1989-2005. A strong advocate of film preservation, Hiller was the founding chairman of the Artists Rights Foundation, which was formed during his presidency in 1991 and later consolidated with the Film Foundation in 2002 under the DGA umbrella, as well as chairman of the DGA President’s Committee on Film Preservation.

In recognition of his extraordinary service to the Guild and its membership, the DGA presented Hiller with the Robert B. Aldrich Award in 1999 and the DGA Honorary Life Member Award in 1993. In 1970 he received a DGA Award nomination for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Feature Film for Love Story.

Link to video of Arthur Hiller’s DGA Visual History:

DGA Communications Department (310) 289-5333
DGA Quarterly Summer 2007
Legends of the Guild
A Love Story reunion with stars Ali MacGraw, Ryan O’Neal and Director Arthur Hiller.
A Special Projects Committee Event