Sam Peckinpar Directed the film Osterman Weekend with Rutger Hauer


Date of birth 21st February 1925

Place of BirthFresno, California, USA

Birth name David Samuel Peckinpah

Nicknames Bloody Sam & Mad Sam

Height 5' 9" (1.75 m)

Date of death 28th December 1984

Inglewood, California, USA. (stroke)


Sam was born and grew up in Fresno, California, when it was still a sleepy town surrounded by pine forests.  He spend most of his childhood alone through choice.  Sam's greatest influence was grandfather Denver Church Peckinpah, a judge, congressman and one of the best shots in the Sierra Nevadas.  Sam served in the Marine Corps during World War II but - to his disappointment - did not see combat.  In 1948 Sam enrolled as a theatre graduate student at the University of Southern California.

Sam drifted from job to job, from floor sweeper to small parts in films. Director Don Siegel liked Sam and got him small parts in a number of his films.  Peckinpah became a scriptwriter for such TV programs as "Gunsmoke" (1955).

In 1961 he directed his first film, the nondescript western The Deadly Companions.

Sam Peckinpar had quite an abrasive manner, often made worse by drink and drugs.  On one occasion, Sam managed to provoke the usually even-keeled Charlton Heston to threaten to run him through with a cavalry saber.

Sam's second marriage was on the rocks and he had a break from filming for about two years.  Sam then, in 1969, made the film The Wild Bunch, for which he will always be remembered.

The Osterman Weekend was Sam Peckinpar's last film.