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Steven Spielberg

December 18, 1946
Spielberg is born to Leah and Arnold in Cincinnati, Ohio. He is the oldest of four children.

Young Spielberg becomes interested in making home movies by playing with his father's 8mm camera around the house and on camping trips.

At 16, Spielberg begins work on what would be his biggest project to that point. He wrote and directed the 140-minute film "Firelight," the story of a team of scientists investigating mysterious lights in the sky.

Spielberg finishes high school. He enters California State College at Long Beach and majors in English. Spielberg works on various film projects and makes connections in Los Angeles.

Spielberg makes "Duel," an acclaimed television movie about the relationship between a traveling salesman and a menacing truck driver.

"Jaws," a thriller about a killer shark that attacks a small New England community, is a great success, becoming the first movie to make more than $100 million. It sets a precedent for summer blockbuster movies.

Spielberg joins forces with moviemaker George Lucas to bring to life the adventures of archaeologist hero Indiana Jones, played by Harrison Ford. Two more "Indiana Jones" movies follow.

Spielberg marries actress Amy Irving, whom he had met at a casting call for his film "Close Encounters of the Third Kind." The couple divorces amicably in 1989. Also in 1985, Spielberg directs the acclaimed film "The Color Purple," based on the Alice Walker novel, starring Whoopi Goldberg and Danny Glover.

Spielberg releases "Jurassic Park," a fantasy film about dinosaurs that earns more than $350 million and ranks No. 5 among the top grossing movies of all time. In the same year, "Schindler's List," the story of a man who helped save Polish Jews during the Holocaust, wins Spielberg two Oscars, one for best director and another as producer of the best picture.

Spielberg directs another World War II film, "Saving Private Ryan." He wins a second best director Oscar and thanks his father for inspiration during the ceremony.

The Spielberg family moves to Haddonfield, New Jersey.

Arnold Spielberg takes a job with General Electric and later moves the family to Scottsdale, Arizona.

Arnold Spielberg moves the family to Saratoga, California, south of San Francisco. Soon after, Steven Spielberg's parents separate, and his mother moves back to Arizona. Spielberg spends summer 1963 with his uncle in a Los Angeles suburb. He works at Disneyland and Universal Studios. In the fall, Spielberg returns to high school in Saratoga.

After three years in college, Spielberg leaves school and signs a contract with Universal Television Studios.

Spielberg releases his first feature film, "The Sugarland Express," starring Goldie Hawn.

Spielberg makes his second big hit, "Close Encounters of the Third Kind."

"E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial," the story of a lonely boy who finds an alien friend he desperately needs, sweeps the country.

Spielberg marries actress Kate Capshaw. The two met during the filming of "Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom" (1984).

Spielberg teams up with Jeffrey Katzenberg and David Geffen to launch DreamWorks SKG, a film and music studio.

Spielberg's "A.I." is among the mostly highly anticipated summer blockbusters. The movie is about an android boy, a futuristic Pinocchio who yearns to be something more.

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