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Look out for more coverage of
It Runs in the Family in our magazines

THE MOVIE: It Runs in the Family

THE STARS:
Kirk Douglas • Michael Douglas • Cameron Douglas • Diana Douglas
DIRECTOR: Fred Schepisi

The Douglas family THE CONCEPT:
The real life Douglas family portray three generations of the Gromberg family, who are successful in business, but dysfunctional when it comes to communicating with each other.

U.S. RELEASE: April 25 2003, Nationwide
• Rated: PG-13

THE COMMENTS:

MICHAEL DOUGLAS on working with his family:
“It was much easier than I expected. I was a little nervous, and thought, ‘What have we done? Is this really a good idea?’ Of course, my son Cameron was a really big question mark, and I’m grateful for our director, Fred Schepisi, who auditioned him three times for the role over a period of time. Then, I said to Fred, ‘I’d like you to meet my mother, she’s an actress!’”

KIRK DOUGLAS:
“I think making It Runs in the Family was almost the apex of my career. When Michael came up with It Runs in the Family I thought it was a good idea, a good movie, and then I had a stroke. I was very depressed and Michael was trying to cheer me up, and said, ‘Dad, just keep working with your speech therapist, then we’ll make the movie.’ And I got mad, and I said, ‘Michael, why don’t you work with my speech therapist and when you talk like I talk, we’ll make the movie.’ Michael still doesn’t talk like I talk, but we made the movie and it was a big thrill. I think this is the first time that a movie has been made with three generations [from the same family]. It was very important for me.”

DIANA DOUGLAS on working with Kirk, after being divorced from him for over 50 years:
“It was a damn sight easier to work with him this time than when we made The Indian Fighter (1955). I think we were both older and wiser. It was under the Rhino aegis and Kirk was quite tense and quite hands on in all directions about things. I know some of the other actors came and complained to me and I said, ‘Look, I’m not married to him, you go and deal with it.’ But I do remember saying to Kirk, ‘Why don’t you just let the director do it, and stay out of everyone’s way.’ That didn’t go over too well.”

KIRK DOUGLAS:
“Let me tell you, it was very easy to work with Diana again, because my ex-wife and I have always been friends after having been divorced almost fifty years ago. And she’s also a good actress. So, there we were, the whole family making a movie together.”

CAMERON DOUGLAS:
“Me and my dad have a pretty good relationship. I think that in doing this movie together, maybe he gained a different kind of respect for me.”

MICHAEL DOUGLAS on working with Kirk:
“It was great. He’s just so inspirational in so many ways. This was his eighty-sixth movie in his eighty-sixth year. Everyday he’d say, ‘Son, I have a couple of notes here on this scene.’ He’s always working, he’s always got new ideas, and Fred and I would joke and roll our eyes, but then we would end up using ninety percent of everything he said. Of course, all he remembers is the ten percent that we didn’t use.”

Written by Judy Sloane. Back to top

Visit the official It Runs in the Family site
Images above © MGM
Feature © 2003 Visual Imagination.
Not for reproduction.

Film Review, #630, May 2003 cover

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