Samuel Wilder: Early Life, Death, Career, Marriage & Net Worth

There are a lot of cases when actors and actresses get huge credit. However, Samuel Wilder, also known as Billy Wilder, was a talented director who deserves credit for his outstanding work.

He was not only a director but also a well-known screenwriter. His career was a boost for many uprising directors till he left the earth.

Wilbert has given some great movies like The Lost Weekend (1945), The Seven Year Itch (1955), Sunset Boulvevard (1950), Someone Like It Hot (1959), The Foreign Affair (1948), and many others.

Legendry Billy Wilder.
Legendary Billy Wilder.

In this article, we will talk in detail about the man and his legacy. So, Just be there till the final words are said.

Quick Facts

Let’s begin with the quick facts.

Full Name Samuel Wilder
Known as Name Billy Wilder
Date of Birth June 22, 1906
Date of Death March 27, 2002
Birth Place Poland
Father’s Name Max Wilder
Mother’s Name Eugenia 
Siblings W. Lee Wilder (brother)
Marital Status Married
Ethnicity Mixed
Nationality Austrian-American
Age Died at the age of 95
Profession Director
Children One
Height 5 feet and 9 inches (175 cm)
Eye color Dark Brown
Hair color Brown
Sun Sign Cancer
Social Media N/A
Net Worth $1 million
Last Update 2021

Early Days

Samuel Wilder was born on 22nd June 1906 in Poland. Samuel was born to Max Wilder and Eugenia (Polish Jews family) in Sucha Beskidzka.

His parents had a small business (cake shop) on Sucha’s train station, so they wanted Samuel to join the family business. But, Samuel had other plans for his future.

Samuel holds the Austrian-American nationality along with mixed ethnicity. Being born in June, his zodiac falls under Cancer.

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His mother changed Wilder’s name from Billy to Samuel. From a very young age, Wilder was keen on being in the field of entertainment, and family support was on the rise.

There is no information about his education. To be such a well-known director, surely the man took good lessons too.

Death

The saddest news for the entire acting world came in 2002 at the age of 95. Billy was suffering from pneumonia and all cancer. Thus, the talented yet hardworking director left with a big hole to fill in his home.

Cemetry of Billy Wilder.
Cemetry of Billy Wilder.

His remain was interred in Westwood Village Memorial Park Cemetry in LA near Jack Lemmon.

Age and Height

Billy would have been over 100 years old if he had been alive to this date. However, he is one of the compassionate individuals with the will to learn and also makes things happen. The height reads at 5’9″, with the weight not known.

Wilder is more of the talker. It is due to the silent nature most of the information on body measurements is hard to find.

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Wilder looks pleasant with dark brown eyes and hair of the same color.

Career

One of the most bright and versatile careers surely is of Wilder. He is the legend in the case of direction and filmmaking. The man was never a fan of great cinematography, but good writing fascinated him.

Before joining the film industry, Wilder worked as a taxi dancer in Berlin and a journalist when his family moved to Vienna.

It was the year 1926 when things started to change for Wilder. Wilder interviewed the leader of a jazz band, Paul Whitman. with growing time, their bond became stronger. Thus, Wilder was taken to Berlin by the singer, where he got to grow his connections.

In his long career, the man directed a lot of successful projects. His debut as the screenwriter began with Hell of a reporter in 1929. All the fans admired it.

Cover of the movie, Someone Like It Hot, directed by Billy Wilder.
Cover of the movie, Someone Like It Hot, directed by Billy Wilder.

Since then, the writing works leaped such as People on Sunday, Her Grace Commands, A Blonde Dream, The Blue from the Sky, Midnight, What A Life, and many more.

Time and again, Billy was known for the slight versatility shown in the direction work. He surely was the man of the ’90s, and the exploits were sky-high.

The Front Page, Fedora, Buddy Buddy, and Sabrina are his latest works but pass away. In the field of direction, too, there are more than two dozen works.

The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes, One Two Three, The Seven Year Itch, A Foreign Affair, The Major and the Minor, Bad Seed are highly reputed and respected ones.

Awards and Recognition 

Giving so many best movies to the audience, Wilder is definite to have many prestigious awards and recognition in the industry. Here’s the list of awards garnered by the famous director.

  • Wilder bagged six Academy Awards for the Best Director and Best Original Screenplay out of a total of 21 nominations for categories like screenwriting and direction.
  • During the Cannes film festival, wilder was awarded Grand Prix du Festival International du Film.
  • Wilder also won BAFTA Award for Best Film.
  • Fro the masterpiece, The Apartment, he was nominated eight times in the Directors Guild of America Award.
  • Samuel won the Best Director Awards at the Gloden Globe Awards for The Lost Weekend (1945) and The Apartment (1960). Further, he was nominated for seven different categories.
  • Wilder won seven Writers Guild of America Awards and two Laurel Awards for Screenwriting Achievement.
  • The former director earned lifetime achievement awards, including the Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award, the BAFTA Fellowship, the David O. Selznick Achievement Award in Theatrical Motion Pictures, and the Honorary Golden Bear from the Berlin International Film Festival.

Billy Wilder Wife

Billy was always charming and famous. One could hardly oversee the charisma the man carries all the time. With so much care and support, Wilder found the perfect lady.

On 22nd December 1936, Wilder walked down the aisle with Judith Coppicus. Unfortunately, there is no information about the first meet, but the pairing was made in heaven.

From the marriage, the lovebirds were blessed with twins Victoria and Vincent. Sadly Vincent died immediately after the birth.

Moreover, when everything was going perfectly for them after a decade, the couple decided to separate.

Billy Wilder and his wife, Audrey Young with Jack Lemmon on left.
Billy Wilder and his wife, Audrey Young, with Jack Lemmon on the left.

After the first heartbreak, it was difficult for him to come out of it. But the second wife became a blessing in disguise. Audrey Young came to his life as the breath of fresh air.

Both of them met in 1945 only to walk down the aisle on 30th June 1949. Their bond was so strong that they remain together until the death of Wilder.

Net Worth| How Much Does Billy Wilder Earns?

When you are out to create a legacy, money is just a number. The main motto of Wilder remains to make good movies. As a result of that, Billy sits on the worth of $1 million.

All of this is purely the result of direction and writing. There is information on the net worth, but the annual income and assets in hand are hidden.

Social Media Reach

It is not a new fact to know that Billy Wilder didn’t use social media. During the prime, it was hardly present.

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Frequently Asked Question (FAQs)

What is Billy Wilder known for?

Billy Wilder’s birth name is Samuel Wilder. He is known for his contribution to the film industry for making great movies like The Apartment (1960), The Lost Weekend (1945), Some Like It Hot (1959). A Foreign Affair (1948) and many more. 

When did Billy Wilder come to America?

Wilder stayed in Germany till the rise of the Nazis and then moved to France and again shifted to the United States in 1934. Wilder moved to the US without money, and he didn’t even know how to speak the English language.

Where should I start with Billy Wilder?

Indeed, Billy Wilder has worked hard in many movies. But you can start with Some Like it Hot. The movie is one of the best romantic comedy movies starring the legendary Marilyn Monroe and others. This movie was released in 1959.

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