David Mamet's Biography
David Mamet was born on November 30th, 1947 in Illinois. He went to college in Vermont and then studied acting at The Neighborhood Playhouse School of Theater in New York.
As well as writing plays, David Mamet has directed and written screenplays for films, authored a number of essays, written novels and translated Anton Chekhov.
Mamet has often ended up witing screenplays for what started out as his most famous plays including American Buffalo (1975; filmed 1996), Oleanna (1992, filmed 1997) and Glengarry Glen Ross (1983, filmed 1992). David Mamet won a Pulitzer Prize for the latter.
In 2005, David Mamet's Glengarry Glen Ross also won a Tony award for best revival of a play.
His first screenplay was the 1981 adaptation of James M. Cain's The Postman Always Rings Twice. The following year David Mamet received an Academy Award nomination for The Verdict directed by Sidney Lumet.
In 1987, David Mamet made his debut directing with the film, House of Games, for which he also wrote the screenplay.
Mamet had a cameo role playing poker with Debra Winger in the 1987 film Black Widow. Poker is a subject that seems close to Mamet's heart. In his excellent collection of essays "Writing in Restaurants" he has an essay entitled "Things I Learnt Playing Poker on the Hill" which is full of poker wisdom.
Also of interest is his essay "Black As the Ace Spades" in his collection, "Some Freaks. In it, David Mamet recounts:
"I've also had a recurring dream. I have it once or twice a year: I am playing poker and have been dealt a magnificent hand (a leadpipe cinch (which is to say 'a certain winner'). As I am about to lay down my hand and claim the pot, I discover that I have one too many cards in my hand, and that through no fault of my own, my hand is now invalid. I finally succeed in discarding the unwanted card, and then find that I now have too many cards in my hands, et cetera."
In August 2009, Walt Disney revealed that David Mamet is to write a film about Anne Frank.
Back to Top