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David Fincher is an American film director and music video director. His directing work includes Se7en, The Game, Fight Club, Alien³, Panic Room, Zodiac, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, and The Social Network. Although Fincher directed Alien³, he has since disowned the film.

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Biographical information[]

Early life[]

Fincher was born on August 28, 1962 in Denver, Colorado, the son of Claire Mae (née Boettcher), a mental health nurse who worked in drug addiction programs, and Howard Kelly Fincher, who was an author and worked as a bureau chief for Life. When Fincher was two years old, the family moved to San Anselmo, California. Fincher moved to Ashland, Oregon in his teens, where he graduated from Ashland High School. Inspired by Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969), Fincher began making movies at age eight with an 8mm camera.

Career life[]

At the age of 18, Fincher was employed at Korty Films where he worked on the animated Twice Upon a Time (1983). He was later hired by Industrial Light & Magic in 1983, where he worked on productions for Return of the Jedi (1983) and Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (1984). In 1984, he left ILM to direct a commercial for the American Cancer Society that shows a fetus smoking a cigarette. This quickly brought Fincher to the attention of producers in Los Angeles, and he was given the chance to direct the documentary The Beat of the Live Drum, featuring Rick Springfield, in 1985. Though he would continue to direct spots for companies like Levi's, Converse, Nike, Pepsi, Revlon, and Sony, Fincher soon discovered music videos and went on to direct many promos.

After directing several music videos, Fincher's feature debut was Alien³. While it received an Oscar nomination for special effects, the film was not well received by critics or moviegoers. Fincher became involved with several disputes with 20th Century Fox over script and budget issues. In Director's Cut: Picturing Hollywood in the 21st Century, he blames the producers for not putting the necessary trust in him. He stated in an interview with The Guardian in 2009: "No one hated it more than me; to this day, no one hates it more than me." After this, he retreated back into the world of commercial and music video directing, including the video for the Grammy Award-winning track "Love Is Strong" (1994) by The Rolling Stones.

Fincher has been nominated for the Academy Award for Best Director for The Curious Case of Benjamin Button and The Social Network. For The Social Network, Fincher won the Golden Globe Award for Best Director and the BAFTA Award for Best Direction. His most recent film is The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, an English-language adaptation of Stieg Larsson's novel of the same name. Most recently he was the executive producer of House of Cards.