Gus Van Sant
Name: Gus Van Sant
Occupation: Director
Gender: Male
Birth Day: July 24, 1952
Age: 70
Birth Place: Louisville, United States
Zodiac Sign: Leo

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Gus Van Sant

Gus Van Sant was born on July 24, 1952 in Louisville, United States (70 years old). Gus Van Sant is a Director, zodiac sign: Leo. Nationality: United States. Approx. Net Worth: $50 Million.


He won the Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival for his 2003 film Elephant.

Net Worth 2020

$50 Million
Find out more about Gus Van Sant net worth here.


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Before Fame

He attended the Rhode Island School of Design.


Biography Timeline


Van Sant is an alumnus of Darien High School in Darien, Connecticut, and The Catlin Gabel School in Portland, Oregon. One constant in the director's early years was his interest in visual arts (namely, painting and Super-8 filmmaking); while still in school he began making semi-autobiographical shorts costing between 30 and 50 dollars. Van Sant's artistic leanings took him to the Rhode Island School of Design in 1970, where his introduction to various avant-garde directors inspired him to change his major from painting to cinema.


After spending time in Europe, Van Sant went to Los Angeles in 1976. He secured a job as a production assistant to filmmaker Ken Shapiro, with whom he developed a few ideas, none of which came to fruition. In 1981, Van Sant made Alice in Hollywood, a film about a naïve young actress who goes to Hollywood and abandons her ideals. It was never released. During this period, Van Sant began to spend time observing the denizens of the more down-and-out sections of Hollywood Boulevard. He became fascinated by the existence of this marginalized section of L.A.'s population, especially in context with the more ordinary, prosperous world that surrounded them. Van Sant would repeatedly focus his work on those existing on society's fringes, making his feature film directorial debut Mala Noche.


Van Sant's 1995 film To Die For helped to restore his luster. An adaptation of Joyce Maynard's novel, the black comedy starred Nicole Kidman as a murderously ambitious weather girl; it also stars Matt Dillon as her hapless husband and, the third Phoenix sibling in as many projects, Joaquin Phoenix, as her equally hapless lover (River had died from a drug overdose a year and half earlier). It was Van Sant's first effort for a major studio (Columbia), and its success paved the way for further projects of the director's choosing. The same year, he served as executive producer for Larry Clark's Kids; it was a fitting assignment, due to both the film's subject matter and the fact that Clark's photographs of junkies had served as reference points for Van Sant's Drugstore Cowboy.


In 1997, Van Sant gained mainstream recognition and critical acclaim thanks to Good Will Hunting, which starred and was written by Matt Damon and Ben Affleck. The film—about a troubled, blue-collar mathematical genius—was a huge critical and commercial success. It was nominated for nine Academy Awards, including Best Director for Van Sant. It also won two, including Best Screenplay for Damon and Affleck, and Best Supporting Actor Oscar for Robin Williams, who, in his acceptance speech, referred to Van Sant as "being so subtle you're almost subliminal." Van Sant, Damon and Affleck parodied themselves and the film's success in Kevin Smith's Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back.


It took Gerry over a year to make it to theaters, in which time Van Sant began production on his next film, Elephant. Approached by HBO and producer Diane Keaton to craft a fictional film based on the 1999 Columbine High School massacre, the director chose to shoot in his hometown of Portland, employing dozens of untrained, teen actors. As well as melding improvisational long takes like those in Gerry with Harris Savides' fluid camerawork, the film was also influenced by Alan Clarke's 1989 film of the same name (see Elephant). The finished film provoked strong reactions from audiences at the 2003 Cannes Film Festival. At the Cannes festival, the jury awarded Elephant with their top prize, the Palme d'Or, and Van Sant with his first Best Director statue from the festival. The success of Elephant led Van Sant to show the U.S. premiere of Elephant as a fundraiser for Outside In, an organization working to help youth living on the streets of Portland, Oregon.


In 2000, Van Sant directed Finding Forrester, about a high-school student (Rob Brown) from the Bronx unlikely becoming a friend of a crusty, reclusive author (Sean Connery). Critical response was generally positive.


In 2005, Van Sant released Last Days, the final component of what he refers to as his "Death Trilogy", (the other parts being Gerry and Elephant). It is a fictionalized account of what happened to Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain in the days leading up to his death. In 2006, Van Sant began work on Paranoid Park based on the book by Blake Nelson, about a skateboarding teenager who accidentally causes someone's death. The film was released in Europe in February 2008. He also directed the "Le Marais" segment of the omnibus film Paris, je t'aime.


Released in 2008, Van Sant's Milk is a biopic of openly gay San Francisco politician Harvey Milk, who was assassinated in 1978. The film received eight Oscar nominations at the 81st Academy Awards, including Best Picture, winning two for Best Actor in a Leading Role for Sean Penn, who starred as Milk, and Best Original Screenplay for writer Dustin Lance Black. Van Sant was nominated for Best Director. Van Sant later stated that his experience with Sean Penn on the film was "amazing".


His 2011 project Restless was screened in the Un Certain Regard section at the 2011 Cannes Film Festival, and starred Mia Wasikowska and Henry Hopper, the son of actor Dennis Hopper.


Van Sant's film, Promised Land, was released on December 28, 2012. The film stars Frances McDormand, Matt Damon, and John Krasinski—the latter two co-wrote the screenplay based on a story by Dave Eggers. Filmed in April 2012, the production company, Focus Features, selected the release date so that the film is eligible to qualify for awards consideration.


In December 2016, it was announced Van Sant would direct Don't Worry, He Won't Get Far on Foot, a biopic about cartoonist John Callahan, starring Joaquin Phoenix, Rooney Mara, Jonah Hill, Jack Black and Mark Webber. Principal photography began in March 2017.

🎂 Upcoming Birthday

Currently, Gus Van Sant is 70 years, 6 months and 7 days old. Gus Van Sant will celebrate 71st birthday on a Monday 24th of July 2023.

Find out about Gus Van Sant birthday activities in timeline view here.

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