Born Nov 23, 1944. From New York City.
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James Toback’s curious career began with his screenplay for “The Gambler,” the Dostoevsky adaptation released in 1972. He went on to direct most of his screenplays, including “Fingers” (1978), a sort of mob film that led Pauline Kael to ruminate on the then-fledgling director: “There’s almost a swagger in the way he consciously goes beyond the rationally acceptable: he’s looking for art in that beyond, wanting the unknown—the dangerous—to take over.” He is also a fixture of Hollywood lore, known as a onetime compatriot to Warren Beatty. (“Bugsy,” one of the few screenplays of his he didn’t direct, was nominated for an Oscar.) Toback recently earned widespread acclaim for his documentary “Tyson,” which mines the titular boxer’s life and legacy.