Michael Ritchie

28 Nov 1938 - 16 Apr 2001

Director, Writer

Michael Brunswick Ritchie (November 28, 1938 - April 16, 2001) was an American film director.

Ritchie was born in Waukesha, Wisconsin, the son of Patricia (née Graney) and Benbow Ferguson Ritchie. His family later moved to Berkeley, California, where his father was a professor of experimental psychology at the University of California at Berkeley and his mother was the art and music librarian for the city.

He attended Berkeley High School before becoming interested in film, and was accepted at Harvard University following high school.

Ritchie attracted attention in his senior year at Harvard in 1960 by directing the original production of the Arthur Kopit play, Oh Dad, Poor Dad, Mamma's Hung You in the Closet and I'm Feelin' So Sad in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

His work on Kopit's play led to a job offer from Robert Saudek, the producer of the Omnibus television series. Ritchie also directed episodes of Profiles in Courage and such TV series as The Man From U.N.C.L.E., Dr. Kildare and Felony Squad prior to making his Hollywood feature-film debut in 1969 with Downhill Racer.

His sister, Elsie Ritchie, acted in two of his films (The Candidate and Smile).

In 1994, Ritchie purchased the hacienda-style house at 12305 Fifth Helena Drive, in the Brentwood district of Los Angeles, where Marilyn Monroe died in 1962. He bought it for $995,000.

In 1994, Ritchie moved to Manhattan with his wife, Jimmie B. Ritchie, and daughters, Lillian (b. 1986) and Miriam (b. 1988). His additional children include a son, Steven (b. 1973); daughters Lauren (b. 1966) and Jessica (b. 1973), and two stepchildren, Nelly Bly and Billy Bly.

Ritchie died at age 62 of complications from prostate cancer, on April 16, 2001, in New York.

Photos

No photos.

Filmography (21 titles)

(movie, 1997)
···A Simple Wish
Genre: Action, Adventure, Comedy, Fantasy, Science Fiction, Family
Role: Director
(movie, 1995)
···The Fantasticks
Genre: Romance, Musical
Role: Director
(movie, 1994)
···Cops & Robbersons
Genre: Action, Comedy, Family
Role: Director
(movie, 1994)
···Cops and Robbersons
Genre: Comedy
Role: Director
(movie, 1994)
···The Scout
Genre: Comedy, Drama, Sport
Role: Director
(movie, 1993)
···Cool Runnings
Genre: Comedy
Role: Writer
(movie, 1992)
···Diggstown
Genre: Action, Comedy, Drama
Role: Director
(movie, 1989)
···Fletch Lives
Genre: Comedy, Crime, Mystery
Role: Director
(movie, 1988)
···The Couch Trip
Genre: Comedy
Role: Director
(movie, 1986)
···The Golden Child
Genre: Action, Adventure, Comedy
Role: Director
(movie, 1986)
···Wildcats
Genre: Comedy, Drama
Role: Director
(movie, 1985)
···Fletch
Genre: Comedy, Crime, Mystery
Role: Director
(movie, 1983)
···The Survivors
Genre: Comedy, Drama
Role: Director
(movie, 1981)
···Student Bodies
Genre: Comedy, Horror, Mystery
Role: Director
(movie, 1980)
···The Island
Genre: Action, Adventure, Drama, Horror
Role: Director
(movie, 1979)
···An Almost Perfect Affair
Genre: Comedy, Romance
Role: Director
(movie, 1976)
···The Bad News Bears
Genre: Comedy, Family
Role: Director
(movie, 1972)
···The Candidate
Genre: Comedy, Drama
Role: Director
(movie, 1972)
···Prime Cut
Genre: Action, Crime, Drama, Thriller
Role: Director
(movie, 1969)
···Downhill Racer
Genre: Drama, Sport
Role: Director