Wes Craven was an iconic filmmaker who made a considerable impact in the world of horror movies. His movies focused on surreal elements and unconventional concepts, making Wes Craven a household name for horror fans and genre-savvy moviegoers alike. Wes Craven amassed a large net worth as a result of his success in Hollywood, and today, his estate stands at an impressive sum of $60 million, a testament to Wes Craven’s creative vision and skill. The accomplishments of Wes Craven continue to inspire filmmakers from all walks of life to this day, inspiring them to take risks and create art that will leave a lasting impression for years to come.
What was Wes Craven’s net worth?
American filmmaker, writer, and producer Wes Craven had a net worth in excess of $40 million at his time of death. Wes Craven is best known for his pioneering work within the horror genre. He directed horror classics like “A Nightmare on Elm Street,” “Scream,” “The Last House on the Left,” or “The Hills Have Eyes.” Craven also directed the biographical drama “Music of the Heart” as well as the psychological thriller “Red Eye.” After a battle with brain cancer, Wes Craven passed away on August 30, 2015.
Education Early Life and Education
Wes Craven was the son of Paul and Caroline Craven, who were raised in strict Baptist homes. He moved to Illinois as a young adult to study at Wheaton College. There he received a degree both in English and psychology. Craven earned his master’s degree in philosophy and writing from Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland.
Craven started his academic career teaching English at Westminster College, New Wilmington, Pennsylvania, in the mid-60s. He was also a teacher at Madrid Washington High School in Madrid and taught humanities at Clarkson College of Technology, Potsdam, New York. Craven began making short films during his time as a teacher. He bought a 16mm film camera used in the early days of his teaching career. He was referred by Steve Chapin to a job as a sound editor in the film industry. Craven went on to edit the 1971 film, “You’ve got to walk it like you talk it” He was also a director for adult films.
Feature Film Career, 1972-1999
Craven’s debut as a screenwriter and director of feature films was in 1972 with the horror movie “The Last House on the Left.” The film, which was based on Ingmar Bergman’s Oscar-winning 1960 Swedish movie “The Virgin Spring”, was shocking for its violence and initially damaged Craven’s career. It gained a large cult following. Craven’s second movie, “The Hills Have Eyes,” was released in 1977. Craven’s reputation for mastering horror cemented his position as a director, creating a series and a dedicated cult following. Craven directed “Deadly Blessing”, a slasher movie, and “Swamp Thing,” a superhero horror film. The film “A Nightmare on Elm Street” (1984), was his next and most influential. The film starred Robert Englund playing Freddy Krueger as a disfigured, blade-wielding Freddy. It was a huge box-office success and a model for future slasher movies. “A Nightmare on Elm Street”, spawned multiple sequels.
Craven’s second film, “The Hills Have Eyes Part II”, was inspired by the success of “A Nightmare on Elm Street.” He then directed “Deadly Friend,” the “The Serpent and the Rainbow” and “Shocker.” Craven’s 1991 horror comedy, “The People Under the Stairs,” became a huge commercial success. The 1994 release of “New Nightmare,” which was a meta-textual take on “A Nightmare on Elm Street”, and 1995’s horror comedy “Vampire in Brooklyn” starring Eddie Murphy followed. Craven’s 1996 film “Scream” was his greatest success, helping to revive the slasher genre. The satirical, hugely successful film grossed over $170million on a budget of just $15 million. It also spawned three sequels, all directed by Craven. The 90s were closed by the director’s first film outside of horror, “Music of the Heart,” which starred Meryl Streep as Roberta Guaspari, a Oscar nominee.
Later Film Career
Craven launched the new millennium by directing “Scream 3.” In 2005, he directed “Scream 3,” a werewolf horror comedy that starred werewolves. He also directed “Cursed,” a psychological plane thriller about flying. Both of these films were released in 2005. After a five-year hiatus, Craven returned with “My Soul to Take,” his first film as director and writer since 1994’s “New Nightmare.” Craven’s last feature film was “Scream 4,” which was released in 2011.
Influences and Themes
Craven’s movies often feature disintegrating families, dreams that become reality, and self-referential, black comedy. Many of his films, including “The Hills Have Eyes” (among others), explore trauma and abusive family relationships. Craven has cited many major filmmakers as influencing his work, including Ingmar Berman, Federico Fellini and Jean Cocteau.
Death and Personal Life
Craven was married three times. From 1964 to 1969, Craven was married to Bonnie Broecker. They had two children, Jonathan, who was a writer and director, as well as Jessica, who was a former singer-songwriter. Craven was married to Mimi in 1984. Mimi went on to become an actress. In 1987, they divorced. In 2004, Craven married Iya Labunka. She produced many of his films.
Craven, a victim of a brain tumour at his Los Angeles home, died on August 30, 2015. He was 76 years old.