American History X is a 1998 American drama film directed by Tony Kaye. The film was written by David McKenna and stars Edward Norton, Edward Furlong, and Beverly D’Angelo. It is a story about the transformation of a former neo-Nazi skinhead who tries to prevent his younger brother from going down the same wrong path.
The Making of American History X
David McKenna came up with the idea for the story after spending time with a former skinhead who had turned his life around. He wrote the screenplay in six weeks and sold it to New Line Cinema for $250,000. Tony Kaye was hired to direct the film, but he clashed with Edward Norton, who had been cast as the lead character.
During production, Tony Kaye tried to have his name removed from the credits and replaced with “Humpty Dumpty.” He also attempted to have Edward Norton replaced as the lead actor. Norton responded by attempting to have Kaye removed from the project altogether.
The conflict between Kaye and Norton escalated when Norton took control of the editing process and re-cut the film without Kaye’s input. This led to a lawsuit between Kaye and New Line Cinema, which was eventually settled out of court.
Despite all of the controversy surrounding its production, American History X was released in 1998 and received critical acclaim. The film earned Edward Norton an Academy Award nomination for Best Actor in a Leading Role.
The Legacy of American History X
American History X has become known as one of the most powerful films about race relations in America. Its message about hate and redemption still resonates with audiences today.
- The film has been used as an educational tool in schools across America.
- It has been cited by multiple politicians and public figures in discussions about race relations.
- American History X has been referenced in numerous other films and TV shows, further cementing its place in popular culture.
The Bottom Line
American History X is a powerful film that continues to make an impact on audiences today. Despite its controversial production, the film’s message of redemption and the dangers of hate are more relevant than ever before.