Chris Joseph Columbus
September 10, 1958
Spangler, Pennsylvania, U.S.
|Education||John F. Kennedy High School|
|Alma mater||New York University|
|Adventures in Babysitting, Home Alone, Home Alone 2: Lost in New York, Only the Lonely, Mrs. Doubtfire, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, The Help, Pixels|
|Spouse(s)||Monica Devereux (m. 1983)|
Chris Joseph Columbus (born September 10, 1958) is an American movie director, producer and screenwriter. His most successful movies are Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, Mrs. Doubtfire, and Home Alone.
Early life[change | change source]
Columbus was born in Spangler, Pennsylvania and raised in Youngstown, Ohio. He is the son of Mary Irene (née Puskar) and Alex Michael Columbus. Columbus is of Italian and Czech descent. He graduated from John F. Kennedy High School in Warren, Ohio and from New York University's movie school at the Tisch School of the Arts.
Career[change | change source]
Columbus worked as a screenwriter with Steven Spielberg's Amblin Productions, working on Gremlins (1984), The Goonies (1985) and Young Sherlock Holmes (1985). He wrote the first episodes of the animated series Galaxy High (1986) and later made his directorial debut with the teen comedy Adventures in Babysitting (1987) and Heartbreak Hotel (1988).
His directorial work includes Home Alone (1990), Only the Lonely (1991), Home Alone 2: Lost in New York (1992), Mrs. Doubtfire (1993), Nine Months (1995), Stepmom (1998), Bicentennial Man (1999), Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (2001), Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (2002), Rent (2005), I Love You Beth Cooper (2009) and Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief (2010).
Success and criticism[change | change source]
The character types preferred by Columbus are the everyday American men, women and children who struggle to uphold family traditions against a changing, sometimes intimidating (scary) society. In 1993 he said: "I can understand the validity of showing people the ugliness of the world, but I also think there is a place for films to leave people with a sense of hope. If your movie isn't going to do that, I just don't think it's worth making."
Personal life[change | change source]
Columbus married Monica Devereux in 1983, with whom he had four children: Eleanor, Violet, Brendan, and Isabella. Columbus lives in San Francisco's Pacific Heights, where his children attend or previously attended Saint Ignatius College Preparatory. He donated money to the school for a new building, which is named after him.
Columbus's daughter Eleanor appeared as the character Susan Bones in the two Potter movies he directed, making her one of only two Americans cast as students, along with cousin Robert Ayres (Boy in Study Hall #2 in his second Harry Potter movie). She also appeared as an infant in Home Alone with her grandmother and had a small cameo along with her father in Home Alone 2: Lost in New York.
Two of his other children, Violet and Brendan, appeared in unnamed cameo roles in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. Chris and his son also have an uncredited cameo in Rent.
Violet Columbus also appeared in I Love You, Beth Cooper, singing "Forget Me" at the very beginning of graduation and the entire movie itself.
His wife Monica Devereux made a small appearance in Home Alone as the red-headed flight attendant, and in Home Alone 2: Lost in New York as the Plaza telephone operator.
His father-in-law appeared in Home Alone as a Chicago policeman who checks the McAllisters' home to see if Kevin is there.
Filmography[change | change source]
|1985||The Goonies||✓||$61 million|
|Young Sherlock Holmes||✓||$20 million|
|1987||Adventures in Babysitting||✓||$34 million|
|1988||Heartbreak Hotel||✓||✓||$6 million|
|1990||Home Alone||✓||$286 million|
|1991||Only the Lonely||✓||✓||$22 million|
|1992||Home Alone 2: Lost in New York||✓||$174 million|
|1993||Mrs. Doubtfire||✓||$219 million|
|1995||Nine Months||✓||✓||✓||$70 million|
|1996||Jingle All The Way||✓||$61 million|
|1999||Bicentennial Man||✓||✓||$58 million|
|2001||Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone||✓||✓||$318 million|
|2002||Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets||✓||✓||$262 million|
|2004||Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban||✓||$250 million|
|Christmas with the Kranks||✓||✓||$74 million|
|2005||Fantastic Four||✓||$155 million|
|2006||Night at the Museum||✓||$251 million|
|2007||Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer||✓||$132 million|
|2009||Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian||✓||$177 million|
|I Love You, Beth Cooper||✓||✓||$15 million|
|2010||Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief||✓||$86 million|
|The Last Campaign||✓||✓|
|Welcome to Hoxford||✓|
|The Graveyard Book||✓|
|Ripley's Believe It or Not!||✓|
|Carpe Demon: Adventures of a Demon-Hunting Soccer Mom||✓||✓|
References[change | change source]
- Wazir, Burhan (October 28, 2001). "Hogwarts and all". The Guardian. London. Retrieved April 28, 2010.
- "Chris Columbus Biography (1959-)". www.filmreference.com.
- Europa Publications (2003). The International Who's Who 2004. Routledge. p. 346. ISBN 1857432177.
- Janusonis, Michael (November 28, 1993). "Chris Columbus discovers a new joy in directing 'Mrs. Doubtfire'". Providence Journal. Archived from the original on July 25, 2012. Retrieved November 5, 2009.