Elia Kazan was the mid-twentieth century's most sought-after director of both stage and screen. He directed virtually back-to-back the greatest American dramas of the era--by Arthur Miller and Tennessee Williams--and revolutionized theatre and film with dynamic action, poetic staging, and rigorous naturalism. His list of Broadway and Hollywood successes--A Streetcar Named Desire(stage and screen),All My Sons, Death of a Salesman, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, On the Waterfront, East of Eden, Baby Doll, America America,to name only a few--is a testament to his profound impact on the art of directing. Kazan's insights into these and other classic stage works shaped their subsequent productions--and continue to do so. There is no directorial achievement in America equal to his. This remarkable book, drawn from his notebooks, letters, interviews, and autobiography, shows Kazan at work on each major play and movie--analyzing each piece in terms of his own experience; figuring out staging, costuming, casting; and working with writers on scripts and with actors on interpretations. The final section, "The Pleasures of Directing"--essays Kazan was writing in his last decade--is informal, provocative, candid, and passionate: a wise old pro telling us what to watch out for, how to fight the system, how to search for ourselves in each project, and how to have fun doing it. This monumental, revelatory book--published in Kazan's centenary year--is essential reading for everyone interested in American movies and theatre.