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Wesley Earl Craven

Also Known As: "Wes"
Birthplace: Cleveland, Cuyahoga County, Ohio, United States
Death: August 30, 2015 (76)
Los Angeles, Los Angeles County, California, United States (Brain Cancer)
Immediate Family:

Son of Paul Eugene Craven and Caroline Craven
Husband of Private and Private
Ex-husband of Private
Father of Jessica Craven and Jonathan Craven
Brother of Paul Eugene Craven, Jr. and Private

Occupation: Film, maker, actor and novelist
Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:
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Immediate Family

About Wes Craven

Wesley Earl "Wes" Craven (August 2, 1939 – August 30, 2015) was an American film director, writer, producer, and actor known for his pioneering work on horror genre films, particularly slasher films. where he mixed horror cliches with humor and satire. His impact on the genre was considered prolific and highly influential.[4][5] Due to the success and cultural impact[6] of his works, Craven has been called a "Master of Horror". He was best known for creating the A Nightmare on Elm Street franchise (1984–2010), featuring the Freddy Krueger and Nancy Thompson, and the Scream franchise (1996–2011), featuring Ghostface and Sidney Prescott. His other notable films include The Last House on the Left (1972), The Hills Have Eyes (1977), Swamp Thing (1982), The Serpent and the Rainbow (1988), Shocker (1989), The People Under the Stairs (1991), Vampire in Brooklyn (1995), Music of the Heart (1999), and Red Eye (2005). Craven's final film was Scream 4 (2011). character, directing the first installment and Wes Craven's New Nightmare, and co-writing A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors with Bruce Wagner. Craven also directed all four films in the Scream series, and co-created the Ghostface character. Some of his other films include The Hills Have Eyes, The Last House on the Left, Red Eye and My Soul to Take.

On August 30, 2015, Craven died of brain cancer at his home in Los Angeles. He was 76 years old.

Early life

Wes Craven has become synonymous with genre bending and innovative horror, challenging audiences with his bold vision.

Wesley Earl Craven was born in Cleveland, Ohio, to Caroline (Miller) and Paul Eugene Craven. He had a midwestern suburban upbringing. His first feature film was The Last House on the Left (1972), which he wrote, directed, and edited. Craven reinvented the youth horror genre again in 1984 with the classic A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984), a film he wrote and directed. And though he did not direct any of its five sequels, he deconstructed the genre a decade later, writing and directing the audacious Wes Craven's New Nightmare (1994), which was nominated as Best Feature at the 1995 Independent Spirit Awards, and introduced the concept of self-reflexive genre films to the world. In 1996 Craven reached a new level of success with the release of Scream (1996). The film, which sparked the phenomenal trilogy, was the winner of MTV's 1996 Best Movie Award and grossed more than $100 million domestically, as did Scream 2 (1997). Between Scream 2 and Scream 3 (2000), Craven, offered the opportunity to direct a non-genre film for Miramax, helmed Music of the Heart (1999), a film that earned Meryl Streep an Academy Award nomination for Best Actress. That same year, in the midst of directing, Craven completed his first novel, "The Fountain Society," published by Simon & Shuster. Recent works include the 2005 psychological thriller Red Eye (2005), and a short rom-com segment for the ensemble product, Paris, je t'aime (2006). Over the last few years, Craven has also produced remakes of two of his earlier films for his genre fans, The Hills Have Eyes (2006) and The Last House on the Left (2009). Craven has always had an eye for discovering fresh talent, something that contributes to the success of his films. While casting A Nightmare on Elm Street, Craven discovered the then unknown Johnny Depp. Craven later cast Sharon Stone in her first starring role for his film Deadly Blessing. He even gave Bruce Willis his first featured role in an episode of TV's mid-80's edition of The Twilight Zone. In My Soul to Take (2010), Craven once again brought together a cast of up-and-coming young teens, including Max Thieriot, in whom he saw the spark of stardom. The film marked Craven's first collaboration with wife and producer Iya Labunka, who also produced with him the highly anticipated production of Scream 4. Craven's most recent film, Scream 4 (2011) reunites the director with Dimension Films and Kevin Williamson, as well as with stars Neve Campbell, Courteney Cox and David Arquette, to re-boot the beloved franchise. Craven again exhibits his knack for spotting important talent, with a cast of young actors bringing us a totally new breed of Woodsboro high schoolers, including Emma Robert and Hayden Pannetierre.

Craven was born in Cleveland, Ohio, the son of Caroline (née Miller) and Paul Craven. He had a strict Baptist upbringing, but is an atheist. Craven earned an undergraduate degree in English and Psychology from Wheaton College in Illinois and a masters degree in Philosophy and Writing from Johns Hopkins University.

Motion Picture Director. He was well known for both the horror film classics "A Nightmare on Elm Street" and "Scream". After briefly teaching in the academic world, he entered the film industry, first in the pornographic area and then turning to feature films. Craven's first feature film as a director was "The Last House on the Left". Later on, he would direct the classic slasher-horror films "A Nightmare on Elm Street" and "Scream", which both became a series of movies. During his career, Craven was awarded several awards for his work including the Saturn Award and the New York City Horror Film Award Lifetime Achievement Award.

Career before film industry

Craven briefly taught English at Westminster College and was a humanities professor at Clarkson College of Technology (now Clarkson University) in Potsdam, New York. His first job in the film industry was as a sound editor for a post-production company in New York City.

He additionally taught at Madrid-Waddington High School in Madrid, New York.[16] During this time, he purchased a used 16 mm film camera and began making short movies. When his friend Steve Chapin informed him of a messenger position at a New York City film production co, where his brother, future folk-rock star Harry Chapin worked. Craven moved into the building where his friend Steve Chapin lived at 136 Hicks St. in Brooklyn Heights.[16] His first creative job in the film industry was as a sound editor.[15]

Recalling his early training, Craven said in 1994, "Harry was a fantastic film editor and producer of industrials. He taught me the Chapin method [of editing]: 'Nuts and bolts! Nuts and bolts! Get rid of the shit!'" Craven afterward became the firm's assistant manager, and broke into film editing with You've Got to Walk It Like You Talk It or You'll Lose That Beat (1971).[16]

Directing and writing career

Craven left the academic world for the more lucrative role of pornographic film director. In the documentary Inside Deep Throat, Craven says on camera he made "many X-rated films" under pseudonyms, learning his directing craft. While his role in Deep Throat is undisclosed, most of his early known work involved writing, film editing or both. In 1972 Wes Craven directed his first feature film The Last House on the Left. which was released in 1972.[15] Craven expected the film to be shown at only a few theaters, which according to him "gave me a freedom to be outrageous, and to go into areas that normally I wouldn't have gone into, and not worry about my family hearing about it, or being crushed."[18] Ultimately the movie was screened much more widely than he assumed, leaving him ostracized due to the content of the film.[18]

After the negative experience of Last House, Craven attempted to move out of the horror genre, and began writing non-horror films with his partner Sean S. Cunningham, none of which attracted any financial backing.[19] Finally, based on advice from a friend about the ease of filming in the Nevada deserts, Craven began to write a new horror film based on that locale.[19] The resulting film, The Hills Have Eyes, cemented Craven as a "horror film director" with Craven noting "It soon became clear that I wasn't going to do anything else unless it was scary".[19]

Craven frequently collaborated with Sean S. Cunningham. In Craven's debut feature, The Last House on the Left, Cunningham served as producer. They pooled all of their resources and came up with $90,000.[citation needed] Later, in Craven's best-known film, A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984), Cunningham directed one of the chase scenes, although he was not credited.[15] Their characters, Freddy Krueger and Jason Voorhees, appeared together in the slasher film Freddy vs. Jason (2003) with Cunningham acting as producer, while screenwriter Victor Miller is credited as "Character Creator". Later, in The Last House on the Left remake (2009), Cunningham and Craven share production credits.[20]

Craven had a hand in launching actor Johnny Depp's career by casting him in A Nightmare on Elm Street, Depp's first major film role.[21]

Although known for directing horror/thriller films, he had worked on two films which are outside this genre: Music of the Heart (1999), and as one of the 22 directors responsible for Paris, je t'aime (2006).[17]

Craven created Coming of Rage, a five-issue comic book series, with 30 Days of Night writer Steve Niles.[22] The series was released in digital form in 2014 by Liquid Comics with a print edition scheduled for an October 2015 debut.[22]

Craven's works tend to share a common exploration of the nature of reality. A Nightmare on Elm Street, for example, dealt with the consequences of dreams in real life. New Nightmare "brushes against" (but does not quite break) the fourth wall by having actress Heather Langenkamp play herself as she is haunted by the villain of the film in which she once starred. At one point in the film, we see on Wes Craven's word processor a script he has written, which includes the exact conversation he just had with Heather — as if the script was being written as the action unfolded. The Serpent and the Rainbow portrays a man who cannot distinguish between nightmarish visions and reality. In Scream, the characters frequently reference horror films similar to their situations, and at one point Billy Loomis tells his girlfriend that life is just a big movie. This concept was emphasized in the sequels, as copycat stalkers reenact the events of a new film about the Woodsboro killings occurring in Scream. Scream included a scene mentioning the well-known Richard Gere urban legend. Craven stated in interviews that he received calls from agents telling him that if he left that scene in, he would never work again. He directed Scream 4. Craven was also set to direct Beetlejuice but dropped out to co-write and executive produce the third outing for Freddy Krueger. The "Elm Street" is located in Potsdam (a small town in northern New York).

Craven also frequently collaborates with Sean S. Cunningham. In Craven's debut feature, The Last House on the Left, Cunningham served as producer. Later, in Craven's most famous film, A Nightmare on Elm Street, Cunningham directed one of the chase scenes, although uncredited. Their infamous characters, Freddy Krueger and Jason Voorhees, appeared together in the 2003 slasher film Freddy vs. Jason with Cunningham acting as producer, while screenwriter Victor Miller is credited as "Character Creator". Later, in The Last House on the Left remake, both Cunningham and Craven share production credits.

Although known for directing horror/thriller films, he has worked on two that were outside this genre: the 1999 film Music of the Heart, and as one of the 22 directors in the 2006 collaboration Paris, je t'aime.

Recently Craven has created Coming of Rage, a graphic novel, with 30 Days of Night comic book writer Steve Niles. The comic will be released by Liquid Comics in 2013 with a possible film adaption directed by Craven and produced by Live Free Or Die Hard producer Arnold Rifkin and Liquid Comics CEO Sharad Devarajan.

Family issues, specifically family breakdown

His characters often use elaborate booby traps, to capture the villain

Often features strong female characters

His unglamorous depictions of sadistic and realistically brutal killers

His protagonists are often ordinary characters caught in extraordinary and Horrific circumstances

Brutal and graphic depiction of violence

Villains are often deformed and monstrous looking

His horror films often contain important social issues (e.g. The Last House on the Left, The Hills Have Eyes)

Children in his films are often deformed or brutally murdered, often by the main villain

Often features himself in his own films, even if uncredited

In contrast to the brutal, violent content of most of his films, he was renown for his calm, soft-spoken demeanor

"The" Elm Street is located in Potsdam, NY (a small town just south of the Canadian border). Craven was a Humanities Professor at Clarkson College, also in Potsdam.

Rumoured to have named his onscreen horror creation Freddy Kruger for a boy who used to bully him in high school.

In 1976 he acted in "Tales That Will Tear Your Heart Out," a project being made under the supervision of friend Roy Frumkes, who was teaching at a state university at that time. Shortly after the filming, the raw stock was mistakingly re-exposed by another student, so both days' shooting were lost.

Donated to the Planned Parenthood/Dream Catchers Foundation charity a auction ten-minute personal phone call and two premiere tickets to his next motion picture, Pulse (2006). He has also donated the original mask from his movie Scream (1996) along with other original props. The auction started June 19, 2002, and the props auction started June 29, 2002.

He was an avid birdwatcher.

His father died when he was four years old.

He was the disc jockey for the campus radio station at Clarkson College, where he was a humanities professor.

He nearly turned down the option to direct the hit Scream (1996) because the first scene with Drew Barrymore reminded him too vividly of the climax sequence of The Last House on the Left (1972), his first film.

Directed a documentary about former president Bill Clinton. Craven and the film crew followed Clinton for three hours into the White House a few days before his departure. (January 2001)

When actor-producer Robert Evans suffered a stroke May 6, 1998, Craven was having a drink with him in Evans' screening room when he collapsed in front of him. Evans later quipped, "I really scared the shit out of the king of horror."

Co-wrote the screenplay for Pulse (2006) with Vince Gilligan. The script was based on Kiyoshi Kurosawa's original Japanese horror film. Craven and Gilligan scripted the final draft in the fall of 2002 for Miramax's Dimension Films. The production for this film should have started on October 1, 2002, in Los Angeles. In July 2003, Dimension's chairman Bob Weinstein announced that Pulse (2006) would never be produced because it was too similar to The Ring (2002).

Developed the "evil house" premise for the computer game "Wes Craven's Principles of Fear." Although the game won About Game's Bronze Medal award for Interactive Fiction when the prototype was demonstrated at the 1997 Electronic Entertainment Expo in Atlanta, the game was never completed, due to the financial failure of the game's publisher.

Was set to direct Superman IV: The Quest for Peace (1987) but was replaced after creative differences with star Christopher Reeve.

His vision of Freddy Kruger came from a childhood memory. When he was 10 years old, he looked out the window of the apartment he lived in and a drunk man dressed similar to Freddy was looking directly at him and continued to stay there looking at the window for several minutes. This scared him, so, later on, he decided this will be the look for Freddy.

Profiled in "Hollywood Horror from the Director's Chair: Six Filmmakers in the Franchise of Fear" by Simon Wilkinson (McFarland, 2008).

Directed one Oscar-nominated performance: 'Meryl Streep' in Music of the Heart (1999).

He had a highly dysfunctional relationship with his parents, mainly having been raised by his severe, hyper-religious mother, whom he never allowed to watch his films, and never having a close relationship with his distant, violent-tempered father. His mother's judgmental influence caused him to be too terrified to talk to a girl until he was at college and lead him to marry, in his opinion, too young, and arguably contributed to the angry, bleak themes of his early films.

Authored newspaper article about his current, off-the-set downtime entitled "Retirement: Scarier Than Freddy Krueger" in NYTimes. [February 2013]

Based the story of A Nightmare On Elm Street (1984) on a news report about a group of young men who died in their sleep during horrific nightmares despite having no history of health problems and showing no specific cause of death.

Freddy Krueger's appearance (especially the dirty clothes and hat) was inspired by a hobo who Craven saw staring at him through his window one day when he was age 10.

He is the only person to direct more than one film in the "Nightmare on Elm Street" franchise: A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984) and Wes Craven's New Nightmare (1994).

His ex-wife went on to marry Tom Chapin, who is a Grammy winning singer songwriter as well as the brother of Harry Chapin, who was also a Grammy winner (for the single "Cat's In The Cradle", 1974). His daughter, Jessica Craven, is part of the singing trio The Chapin Sisters, along with Tom Chapin's other two daughters.

He had English and German ancestry.

He was one of the very few directors mostly famous for the horror genre who never directed or wrote a Stephen King movie.

The Italian Production Chart section of Variety, July 9, 1980, announced filming to start on August 18, 1980, of the film "Marimba" to be directed by Wes Craven, with cast Dirk Benedict, Tim McIntire, Chris Mitchum, to be filmed in Columbia and the US. No evidence the film was ever completed or released.

His first film, 'The Last House on the Left' was a rape shocker and was banned in Britain.

Though he was raised a Baptist by his fundamentalist, faith-based mother, Craven later became a staunch Atheist. Once telling Fangoria magazine that "Formally, I don't believe in God, because I think people's minds are too limited to even have a concept of whether there is a God, and I believe religions have done much more harm than they've done good".

He was set to direct the remake of Shirley Jackson's The Haunting, but back out in favour to direct Scream.

He had an undergraduate degree in English and psychology from Wheaton College in Illinois and a master's degree in philosophy and writing from Johns Hopkins University.

He spent his early career making pornographic films under fake names.

He was a teacher and University professor before he began film making.

He began working in the film industry as a sound editor.

He didn't develop an interest in film making until he was in his mid-twenties.

Starting as a messenger he became an assistant editor to Sean Cunningham, who later made 'Friday the 13th, and gave Wes the chance to write and direct his first film, 'The House on the Left' in 1972.

His first hit was with 'The Hills Have Eyes in 1977.

He gained a degree in writing and philosophy, became a professor of English and made a film, 'Mission Impossible' with his students.

In 1986 Wes directed seven episodes of 'The Twilight Zone' and made his acing debut in one of them.

I believe the cinema is one of our principal forms of art. It is an incredibly powerful way to tell uplifitng stories that can move people to cry with joy and inspire them to reach for the stars.

On horror movies: "It's like boot camp for the psyche. In real life, human beings are packaged in the flimsiest of packages, threatened by real and sometimes horrifying dangers, events like Columbine. But the narrative form puts these fears into a manageable series of events. It gives us a way of thinking rationally about our fears." Horror films don't create fear. They release it.

I like to address the fears of my culture. I believe it's good to face the enemy, for the enemy is fear. I think there is something about the American dream, the sort of Disneyesque dream, if you will, of the beautifully trimmed front lawn, the white picket fence, mom and dad and their happy children, God-fearing and doing good whenever they can, and the flip side of it, the kind of anger and the sense of outrage that comes from discovering that that's not the truth of the matter, that gives American horror films, in some ways, kind of an additional rage.

In retrospect, it's usually pretty easy to look at horror movies and see the influences of the time. And I think right now, with the post-9-11 world and Iraq, creative people are almost being goaded to look at things in the strongest way possible. If you look at the Academy Awards [movies], those are films about real issues. I think everybody is saying, 'We have to talk about the nitty-gritty stuff here.' It's not the time for confections. [March 2006]

Certainly the deepest horror, as far as I'm concerned, is what happens to your body at your own hands and others.

"If we don't get out of Iraq soon, it'll be like A Nightmare on Elm Street" (April 2007)

If I were interested in reality, I'd be making documentaries.

There is rage in my films, but it's a complete matrix. Sone could be directed at my father, a scary figure. A producer said, 'Make a horror movie'. I said 'I've never seen one.' He said, 'You're a fundamentalist, you must have demons rattling around.

I think sometimes you might expect or want greater recognition. But to me it's a little like how French Impressionists felt about formal recognition. You know, once you're a member of the academy you never pose any danger or threat. I don't know if I'd like that.

[on A nightmare on Elm Street having sequels] I thought they'll never be a sequel. Boy was I stupid.

[on his 1999 movie Music of the Heart] That's my mom's favorite movie of mine, because it was the only one she saw. It was something that I was really drawn to. Horror films are not me, or they're not all of me. They're a very thin slice of me.

[on his 1996 movie Scream] It's almost on a comic book level as far as the danger. And also kind of soap opera-ish.

[on his 1995 movie Vampire in Brooklyn] That was kind of a screwed-up thing, because I wanted to work with a big star. I suppose it could have been better if it were a horror movie, but it wasn't. Eddie (Murphy) didn't want to be funny. He wanted to be serious and he was very difficult.

[on how he got Drew Barrymore to look scared and crying in Scream] Drew Barrymore told me a story of a boy who tortured his...I think it was his dog, with a lighter and it set it on fire and she burst into tears. And being the exploitative bastard that I am as a director, I said "do you mind if we use that?"

So every time on the set if I wanted her to cry, I'd say "the boy has the lighter" or something like that, and she'd burst into tears and be just frantic.

[on the film business] It's a strange business, because once you finish a film, there's this deafening silence and you say, "I'm not working," and the phone doesn't ring. You utterly panic. It's harrowing. Everything is so short-term, so dependent on the whim of public taste and business things you have no control over, like how the economy is going, and how well your film is distributed, or what ad campaign they come up with, or even what the title is.

[on horror films in general] I think they can work two ways. They can distort the reality of violence in a way that makes it seem very attractive; they can show the Dionysian side, which is a whole orgiastic, cruel thing, getting off on the suffering of other people. I think that's a very dangerous kind of horror film. I try to make the kind that shows the end result of violence is something quite appalling. But in the long view, I'm not so sure anymore what the hell it all means.

When you have an idea that really fascinates you and you can honestly say, 'I've never seen anything like that,' what you get is, you get that first audience goes out and tells everybody. And the reason they do that is they've never seen anything like it. You're trying to be the avant-garde of horror. That's where you want to be.

It was a great pleasure to make [Music of the Heart], and to see Meryl [Streep] nominated [for a best actress Oscar] for it. But most of the people I run into who loved it are surprised that I made it. When you have a name that means scares, you have to live with that.

I've always felt like [Scream's] Sidney or [A Nightmare on Elm Street's] Nancy could never go back to that state of mind that they were in before, but that's the life of a warrior, and in a sense, there are no more civilians anymore. You're a warrior. You're in combat. Because the whole world's in combat. You have a responsibility to really help the [horror] genre grow, 'cause there's no limit to how profound it can become. If you go back to those guys like [Federico] Fellini and [Luis] Buñuel, talking about really profound things. Now, I don't know whether you can get a big audience with films that abstruse, but you can in horror if you scare the shit out of them about every eight minutes. So you do a fun deal with the devil: I've got to put a lot of interesting ideas, but I'll hide them and I'll also scare people and make them laugh.

For me with all this stuff, both the horror films and thrillers like this, the most interesting thing is what goes on inside people's heads.

The horrors of retirement. These are scarier than any horror movie I can dream up.

'Happy wife, happy life' is a mantra it seems unwise to ignore.

You don't enter the theater and pay your money to be afraid. You enter the theater and pay your money to have the fears that are already in you when you go into a theater dealt with and put into a narrative. Stories and narratives are one of the most powerful things in humanity. They're devices for dealing with the chaotic danger of existence.

Certainly the deepest horror, as far as I'm concerned, is what happens to your body at your own hands and others. What you want to do is you want to put your audience off-balance. You have to be aware of what the audience's expectations are, and then you have to pervert them, basically, and hit them upside the head from a direction they weren't looking.

It seems like all the powerful people on earth just want to build condos and knock down all the trees... As somebody once said with wonderful succinctness, the golf course is man's boot on the neck of nature.

Horror movies have to show us something that hasn't been shown before so that the audience is completely taken aback. You see, it's not just that people want to be scared; people are scared.

The first monster you have to scare the audience with is yourself. I learned to take the first job that you have in the business that you want to get into. It doesn't matter what that job is, you get your foot in the door.

[on his 1995 movie Vampire in Brooklyn]: "I thought it was good, fun little film and it was nice to get a chance to do comedy but i think the script really hampered it".

[on Sandra Peabody] I'm trying to think which of those actors had acted before. I think maybe Sandra Peabody had one role, and I believe the others had not.

[on Sandra Peabody] You know, the character of Mari took an enormous amount of abuse. I liked Sandra Peabody a lot; I thought she was very pretty, and very plucky... because she was a very young actress, she wasn't nearly as confident and easygoing as Lucy was, and she had become involved in something that was very, very rough. And she hung in there. When the character was raped, she was treated very roughly, and I know Sandra said to me afterwards, "My God... I had the feeling they really hated me."

Awards and nominations

During his career, Wes Craven won nine cinematic awards and received three nominations.

In 1977, he won the 'Prize of the International Critics' Jury' in the "Sitges – Catalonian International Film Festival" for his film The Hills Have Eyes.

In 1985, his horror film A Nightmare on Elm Street won the 'Critic's Award' at the "Avoriaz Fantastic Film Festival".

In 1992, the Brussels International Festival of Fantasy Film presented him the Pegasus Audience Award for the thriller The People Under the Stairs. His Fantasporto won the International Fantasy Film Award for Best Screenplay while the Best Film award went to his film Wes Craven's New Nightmare, the final A Nightmare on Elm Street film he directed. His Shocker was also nominated for Best Film in 1990.

The Gérardmer Film Festival granted him the Grand Prize in '97 for Scream.

He was nominated for Best Director for Scream at the Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films, USA, in 1997.

In 2006, he was honored at Spike TV's Scream with the Mastermind Award (the tribute was presented to him by Neve Campbell).

Other work

Craven designed the Halloween 2008 logo for Google, and was the second celebrity personality to take over the YouTube homepage on Halloween.

Craven had a letter published in the July 19, 1968 edition of Life magazine, praising that periodical's coverage of contemporary rock music, in particular Frank Zappa.

Personal life

Craven's first marriage to Bonnie Broecker produced two children, Jonathan Craven (born 1965) and Jessica Craven (born 1968). Jonathan is a writer and director with a few credits to his name. Jessica was a singer/songwriter in the group the Chapin Sisters. The marriage ended in 1970.

In 1982, Craven married a woman who became known professionally as actress Mimi Craven. The two later divorced, with Wes Craven stating in interviews that the marriage dissolved after he discovered it "was no longer anything but a sham."[31] In 2004, Craven married Iya Labunka; she frequently worked as a producer on Craven's films.[32]

Craven was a birder; in 2010, he joined Audubon California's Board of Directors.[32] His favorite films included Night of the Living Dead (1968), The Virgin Spring (1960) and Red River (1948).[33] Craven was an atheist.[34]

In 1982, Craven married Millicent Eleanor Meyer. However, the two divorced, according to Joe Eszterhas's book American Rhapsody, after she began an affair with actress Sharon Stone. Also according to the book, on the day the divorce was finalized, Stone sent Craven a dozen black roses. Although Craven has never publicly commented on Meyer's lesbian affair, he has stated in interviews that the marriage dissolved after he discovered it "was no longer anything but a sham."

In 2004, Craven married Iya Labunka. She frequently works as a producer on Craven's films.

Craven is a birder. In 2010 he became a member of Audubon California's Board of Directors.

Books and Filmography

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Wes Craven's Timeline

August 2, 1939
Cleveland, Cuyahoga County, Ohio, United States
March 20, 1965
New Castle, Lawrence County, PA, United States
Pennsylvania, United States
August 30, 2015
Age 76
Los Angeles, Los Angeles County, California, United States