Cameron Crowe started out as a rock journalist for Rolling Stone at the age of 15 in The '70s. While his colleagues at the magazine were indifferent to (if not contemptuous of) the Hard Rock, Progressive Rock, and other popular music of the decade (including such groups/musicians as Joni Mitchell, Fleetwood Mac and Eagles), Crowe was a fan of most of it, and was often the only journalist at the magazine willing or able to snare interviews with those bands/musicians.
Near the end of the decade, Crowe left the magazine and wrote Fast Times at Ridgemont High, which became a film in 1982 (directed by Amy Heckerling). Dismissed at the time at being merely another teen sex comedy, it has since been Vindicated by History. After writing a sequel (1984's The Wild Life) which was nowhere near as successful commercially or critically, Crowe eventually turned to directing in 1989 with Say Anything.... He won an Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay in 2000 for Almost Famous, which was based on his time at Rolling Stone.
Because of the many positive things he wrote about them during his time at Rolling Stone, Cameron Crowe films may be the only time you can hear a Led Zeppelin song at the movies.
Films Directed By Cameron Crowe:
- Say Anything... (1989)
- Singles (1992)
- Jerry Maguire (1996)
- Almost Famous (2000)
- Vanilla Sky (2001)
- Elizabethtown (2005)
- We Bought a Zoo (2011)
- Aloha (2015)
TV Shows created by Cameron Crowe:
- Roadies (2016)
Tropes associated with his work include:
- Earn Your Happy Ending: Except for Vanilla Sky (which has a Bittersweet Ending), all of Crowe's films qualify as this.
- History Repeats: His latest film Aloha has an alarmingly similar plot to Elizabethtown: A guy played by a hunky, of-the-moment actor screws up royally at his job, gets chewed out by Alec Baldwin, then goes to a picturesque location in order to make peace with his past and find himself with the help of a spunky blonde.
- Manic Pixie Dream Girl: Elizabethtown features the Trope Namer.
- The Power of Love: Just about every movie he's directed runs on this trope.
- The Power of Rock: Obviously a big part of Almost Famous, but is heavily featured in other films he's done as well.
- Sliding Scale of Idealism vs. Cynicism: All of his films come out as idealistic, though they also show how tough it is to maintain that idealism. Best summed up by a line in Singles, when one character tells another, "You're a realist/dreamer."