David Lynch is an American film director, television director, visual artist, musician and occasional actor. Known for his surrealist films, he has developed his own unique cinematic style, which has been dubbed "Lynchian," a style characterized by its dream imagery and meticulous sound design. The surreal, and in many cases, violent, elements contained within his films have been known to "disturb, offend or mystify" audiences.
Born to a middle-class family in Missoula, Montana, Lynch spent his childhood traveling around the United States, before going on to study painting at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts in Philadelphia, where he first made the transition to producing short films. Deciding to devote himself more fully to this medium, he moved to Los Angeles, where he produced his first motion picture, the surrealist horror "Eraserhead." After "Eraserhead" became a cult classic on the midnight movie circuit, Lynch was employed to direct "The Elephant Man," from which he gained mainstream success. Then being employed by the De Laurentiis Entertainment Group, he proceeded to make two films: the science-fiction epic "Dune" and then a neo-noir crime film, "Blue Velvet," which was critically acclaimed.
Next, Lynch created his own television series with Mark Frost, the highly popular murder mystery "Twin Peaks"; he also created a cinematic prequel, "Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me," a road movie, "Wild at Heart" and a family film, "The Straight Story." Turning further towards surrealist filmmaking, three of his subsequent films operated on dream logic, which is characterized by non-linear narrative structures: "Lost Highway," "Mulholland Drive" and "Inland Empire." Meanwhile, Lynch embraced the internet as a medium, producing several web-based shows, such as the animation "Dumbland" and the surreal sitcom "Rabbits."
Over his career, Lynch has received three Academy Award nominations for best director and a nomination for best screenplay. Lynch has won France's César Award for Best Foreign Film twice, as well as the Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival and a Golden Lion award for lifetime achievement at the Venice Film Festival. The French government awarded him the Legion of Honor, the country's top civilian honor, as a Chevalier in 2002 and then an Officier in 2007, while that same year, The Guardian described Lynch as "the most important director of this era." Allmovie called him "the Renaissance man of modern American filmmaking," while the success of his films has led to him being labelled "the first popular Surrealist."
Lynch's other artistic endeavours include: his work as a musician, encompassing three studio albums as well as music and sound design for a variety of his films; painting and photography and writing three books—”Images” (1994), “Catching the Big Fish” (2006), and “Room to Dream” (2018).
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